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A Primer on Blanco Vermouth

 

It’s kind of lived in the shadows of its cousins. Dry is obviously for Martinis and sweet is for Manhattans. But what on earth do you do with blanco (or white) vermouth? Turns out a lot, actually. A little sweeter and  more aromatic, it can be sipped before dinner, or used in cocktails. Learn about the top producers and some recipe inspiration to get you started.

 

White Hot & Fortified

By Kelly Magyarics, DWS

Dry is for Martinis, and sweet is for Manhattans. But just what the heck do you do with white vermouth? This style – which may be labeled “blanc,” “bianco” or “white” – dates back almost as far as its more popular (and more frequently stirred) siblings, yet also tends to be the most difficult to understand. But with more bottles on shelves from producers includingCarpano, Dolin, Alessio and Cinzano, it’s time to give the pale yellow aromatized wine a peek.

At first glance it may look a little like dry vermouth, but that’s pretty much where the similarity ends. “Ultimately, blanco and dry vermouth are pretty similar at a basic level, but the increased residual sugar and rounder aromatic profile in a blanco really sets it apart,” says Peter Koll, restaurant director at the new Hazel in Washington, D.C., which boasts a robust vermouth program. He goes on to add that the botanicals in dry vermouth tend to be more aggressive and the finish drier; on the flip side, softer, more approachable blanco is a tad more versatile. “The floral botanicals, softer citrus and spice allow it to play well with both light and dark spirits.” Read the entire article on Nightclub & Bar.

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