There are plenty of cocktails around town this time of year that play with traditional holiday flavors — orange, cinnamon, mint. And mostly, they're cloying, or at best fun and balanced but not particularly interesting.
At Picca, the most interesting drink on the current cocktail list fits the season, but only incidentally. It's a play on a mixed up world, a drink with enough international influences to spin your head. Pisco, fino sherry, cognac, lime juice, Vietnamese cinnamon syrup and angostura bitters should probably not go so well together, but if anyone could make it work it's Julian Cox, and here it works beautifully.
The main flavors that shine through are the warming cognac and a soft cinnamon. But the sherry gives the drink a dry, nutty edge, and the pisco and lime juice brighten everything, making for a drink that's refreshing and not cloying in the slightest.
It all goes to show — regional specificity and authenticity is all well and good, but sometimes a little multiculturalism in the glass is exactly what a chilly evening calls for.
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