Apparent Sour

Aperol, Elderflower liqueur, Lime juice, Rosemary
Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with smacked rosemary.
Cocktail summary
Created byfrom Bobby Heugel of Anvil Bar & Refuge in Houston, TX
AuthenticityAuthentic recipe
Posted byendless_optimism on 05/25/2011


I made these last night using blood orange juice instead of lime juice. More intense color, different perfume. Altogether very interesting.

christina in tacoma's picture

The rosemary garnish is delicious, but this drink is really sweet. I added 1.5 oz gin, which helped some. If I were to try again, I would probably just make a Bitter Elder with rosemary added...

I am going to give this recipe a try with a rosemary tincture in lieu of substituting gin to 'beef' it up. Haha, but a London dry would be all wrong anyway. I would consider dumping some Hendricks or an Old Tom in there but any gin is going to overpower the subtle notes of the Aperol and StG's. a tincture is pretty harsh too but a few drops of one seasoned with rosemary should do just the trick.

I will try small versions all three ways and proffer some reflections.

I tried the original recipe in a half portion and it was way too sweet and sour in alternating doses.

I used an ounce of Hendricks (half ounce) on the variation and found it to be a delightful drink. However, it was similar to a Negroni with more sweet and less bitter in the aftertaste (this is obviously discounting the tones of rosemary that make is markedly different in aroma). The real problem was this: the drink didn't taste much like a 'sour' anymore with the gin. It was a good drink but an entirely different one.

Using the half measures again, I made a version and used sweetened lime juice (in lieu of fresh squeezed in the others) and 2 ml of rosemary tincture and no garnish. It was easily the best of the three and still had a flavoring in keeping with the drink's name. The sweetened lime juice gave it that nice 'sour' feel and fortified the mixture against the introduction of 50-60% alcohol tincture (I used equal parts water and everclear for the recipe).

Finally, I celebrated my tweak with a regular sized version:
1 1/2 oz Aperol
3/4 oz St. Germain
3/4 oz Rose's Sweetened Lime
3 ML of Rosemary Tincture

shaken well in ice and strained into a chilled coup then garnished with a small sprig of rosemary (no need to slap). It was fantastic and I will be making this for friends soon enough to get their thoughts.

Cocktail sponsor