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Piccolo Giardino: A Low-ABV Spring Cocktail

This post is sponsored by Amaro Lucano. All words and opinions are my own.

Spring is a really wonderful time for cocktails in New England. When we finally come out of the endless winter chill, there’s nothing like enjoying those first few outdoor cocktails on the patio! Today I’m sharing an incredibly simple and very delicious drink for just that purpose, featuring Amaro Lucano.

When the afternoon sun is warm, and the days are getting long, I love to wrap up work early and fix a nice low-ABV sip to have on the patio or out in the back field while my daughter runs around. We have a nice big field out back, and that stretch of flat land makes the sky above look so big. Once it’s warm enough, there’s nothing I love more than fixing a drink and plopping down in an adirondack chair, just watching the clouds drift by.

Lower-ABV cocktails are great this time of year, when you want something easy and refreshing that won’t slow you down. A great simple cocktail formula is a duo, or a drink containing just two ingredients. A while back, I tried a one-to-one duo of Amaro Lucano and sweet vermouth, with a couple dashes of bitters, and it was heaven! Fast forward a couple of months, and switch up the bitters, and you have a great patio cocktail that’s easy to make for one or for a group. I like this petite drink served up, but it’s also very nice served on the rocks, because as the dilution increases, the drink changes and different flavors come through. Try it whichever way suits your taste!

Amaro Lucano is a really versatile amaro, so if you’re not sure where to start with amari, this is one of the bottles you’ll want to pick up first. The more amari that I try, the more that I appreciate Amaro Lucano’s well-balanced bittersweet flavor. In my opinion, it’s right in the middle of bitter and sweet, leaning perhaps a touch to the bitter side in the best way possible. When mixed with just some vermouth and bitters, all of the wonderful herbal flavors are showcased at center stage. This is a great little aperitif to serve at a cocktail or dinner party, or a digestif to enjoy at the end of a meal!

Piccolo Giardino (Little Garden) Cocktail Recipe:


  • 1.25 oz Amaro Lucano

  • 1.25 oz sweet vermouth (I recommend Punt e Mes for this recipe)

  • 2 dashes orange bitters

  • 1 dash lavender bitters

Instructions: Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with an expressed lemon twist.