Sickly-sweet Amaretto Sours, staples at sorority parties of yore, have long given the namesake almond liqueur a bad rep. But Will Edwards, who oversees the bar at Flatiron newcomer élan isn’t fooled by the negative hype.
“Amaretto is inherently decadent. Surprisingly, its residual sugar content doesn’t translate dramatically to cocktails,” he says. Take his frothy This Just In — “the name is intended as a news flash of sorts, like this just in: amaretto is delicious,” Edwards explains — in which amaretto is buoyed by an egg white and an unrelenting blast of habanero heat against a sturdy rye backbone.
“The goal is for the cocktail to burst with amaretto, but linger with the nuances of the other ingredients. It’s intended as a vehicle to bolster appreciation for the liqueur,” says Edwards.
Because it would be foolish to leave élan without indulging in acclaimed chef David Waltuck’s food, Edwards recommends sipping the This Just In alongside the Asian-inspired potato pot-stickers and General Tso’s sweetbreads. As he points out, “Just think of Szechuan cuisine and the way chile pepper and acidity so brilliantly balance when done right.”
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