Mixology Monday LXXXV: The Nu Manhattan: Bourbon, Vermouth, Nutella, Angostura

Mixology Monday LogoThis month’s Mixology Monday is “Aw, nuts!” It comes to us via Elana at the excellent blog Stir and Strain. Her challenge is interesting, and it begs for infusions and liqueurs. Me, I had to take a different approach to incorporate nuts into my drink. I searched all over my house and didn’t find a single freakin’ nut. Sure, I have amaretto, but I wanted to do something a little different. So I didn’t find any nuts in my pantry, but I did find…Nutella.

Yes, Nutella, that decadent, chocolatey hazelnut spread that my children devour on everything from plain bread to bananas to pancakes.

So Nutella it was.

As soon I saw it, I thought of the Manhattan. I generally like to put a little triple sec in my Manhattan, the way Dushan Zaric recommends just to give it a little sweetness, so I thought I could use a little Nutella instead. It works. And the Nu Manhattan cocktail was born.

In a cocktail shaker, combine with ice:

  • 2 1/4 oz bourbon
  • 1 1/2 oz sweet vermouth
  • 10 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 1 barspoon Nutella

and shake it really well. The Nutella doesn’t want to dissolve, so you really have to shake it. I know it breaks the rule of stirring drinks that don’t have a citrus or other mixing component, but you know, when you’re putting Nutella into your Manhattan, you’re already breaking a lot of rules.

Then double strain it through a fine mesh strainer into a cocktail glass, and garnish it with a bit of mint. Do use a fine strainer, or you will end up with little bits of Nutella in your glass.

The look is not appetizing, I admit. Nutella is a dark, rich brown, and it doesn’t make a pretty drink. The nose is all mint and nuts, with a hint of chocolate, almost like a Peppermint Patty. And it tastes like a candy bar, too. Rich and velvety with a Snickers front end and a Fernet-like back end.

So thanks, Elana, for making me venture out and try Nutella in my Manhattan. I may have to try it with other spirits or drink versions. If anyone has any ideas, leave me a comment!

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