Amber and Wine

A challenge for Scandinavian bartenders

Scandinavian bartenders are faced with a challenge. The average consumer of aquavit – the most uniquely Scandinavian spirit of any, is 60+ and the younger generations don’t seem to be picking up the taste. And who can blame them. If your first memories of aquavit is uncle Einer dropping his pants before dinner even got started, who wouldn’t develop an aversion to the product!? Innovation is needed to bring the aquavit into the new millennium.

Quite a few bartenders around Copenhagen have taken up the challenge. Rasmus Poulsgaard from Duck and Cover is one. He is of the opinion that we owe it to our cultural heritage to reinvent uses for aquavit in the contemporary bar. As Danish restaurants explore new uses for local ingredients why shouldn’t bars explore new uses for aquavit? What a good question!

A stunning result of this noble quest is Duck and Cover’s Amber and Wine. An elegant variation on a martini combining the pine and resin of Norldguld Aquavit with the lightly sweet fortified wine Lillet Blanc.

4 cl Nordguld aquavit
2 cl Lillet Blanc
1 barspoon of orange curacao

Stir all ingredients with ice and serve in a martini glass. Garnish with a quarter slice of a lemon (a slice for fruitiness rather than the bitternes zesting).

Nordguld Aquavit is distilled from caraway and amber (also known as Nordic gold – which is the literary meaning og “Nordguld”) and matured in sherry casks for several months. The hint of orange compliments the amber and brings out an exotic fruity quality in the drink which blends beautifully with the sweet Lillet blanc and the slice of lemon.

If this is how the rebirth of aquavit tastes like, we will toast to a long and healthy life!

Author image
Thomas Klem Andersen
I believe that true mastery eventually leads to original creation given the right conditions. I love creative cocktails that push the limits of flavor pairing. But I can't deny I have a personal preference for whisky and love everything that is clear and stirred.