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Arts & Life

Cheers! 'A Grand Night' inspired by a Grand Rapids collaboration

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Lester Graham
/
Michigan Radio
'A Grand Night' cocktail features a coffee amaro from Grand Rapids.

Combining the best of an after dinner coffee and an after dinner amaro, Tammy Coxen of Tammy’s Tastings came up with the perfect night cap thanks to a collaboration between a Grand Rapids distiller and a Grand Rapids coffee roaster.

Tammy has been playing around with a new product from Long Road Distillers named Amaro Pazzo in a collaboration with Madcap Coffee.

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Credit Lester Graham / Michigan Radio
Tammy Coxen measuring one ounce of Amaro Pazzo for her new cocktail.

“There are a lot of different distillers in the state making coffee liqueurs. There’s ample opportunity everywhere,” Tammy noted, adding that she loves the sense of collaboration.

“But, what I really love about Amaro Pazzo is that it took coffee liqueur to a whole new level by incorporating these amaro elements,” she said.

Amaro is a category of liqueur. Historically, amari come from Italy. It seems as though every little town has its own amaro. Most of them are intended as an after dinner drink, a digestivo.

“They are often quite bitter, usually somewhat sweet,” Tammy explained. They include lots of botanicals and tons of interesting flavors.

Tammy was surprised that Amaro Pazzo’s coffee taste is not the first thing you note when taking a sip. 

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Credit Lester Graham / Michigan Radio
Stirring the ingredients with ice.

“There’s some orange peel in here so you get a little citrus up front. Then the gentian and wormwood that they’re using as bittering elements really come through. The coffee is actually on the finish,” she said.

She’s been experimenting to see how the new amaro might be used in a cocktail. Sticking with the ‘after dinner’ theme, she decided to concoct a night cap and calls it “A Grand Night” in honor of that Grand Rapids collaboration.

A Grand Night

2 oz Plantation Original dark rum
1 oz Amaro Pazzo
1/2 oz creme de cacao

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass with ice. Stir to combine. Strain into a coupe cocktail glass.

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