Napa Valley Sweet VermouthMADE BY MATTHIASSON WINE IN NAPA, CALIFORNIA
This sweet Italian-style vermouth is made with Flora grapes, whose natural sugars and flavors are seriously ampled up as they're allowed to ripen on the vine until they become wrinkled and dry.
After the wine is aged in oak, it's blended with neutral grape spirits infused with Matthiasson's own blood oranges and sour cherries (everything grows in California!!) and some organic coriander they purchase. Bitterness is added, mostly with their own cardoons (kind of like artichokes), but also with some sourced cinchona bark, wormwood and blessed thistle for added complexity.
This complicated recipe makes one of the most remarkable vermouths we've ever tasted. Sweet, yet bitter with bright fruity notes and warm spices – we sip it straight and couldn't imagine ever wanting it any other way. Well, until we tried it in a Negroni.
Matthiasson only made 50 cases of this one, so this won't be around forever.
tip of the tongue
Like we said, a Negroni: Combine 1 1/2 oz Russell Henry Dry Gin (or any other London Dry style gin), 3/4 oz Campari and 3/4 oz Matthiasson Sweet White Vermouth in a cocktail shaker with lots of ice. Shake until very cold and strain into a chilled cocktail glass or a tumbler filled with fresh ice (ideally, one or two large cubes). Garnish with an orange twist.