The Rancho Cocktail Recipe

The Rancho Cocktail Recipe

The Rancho Cocktail Recipe

If you tried yesterday’s 909 Cocktail, chances are that you have a little bit of blood orange left. So did we, which is no surprise since we had a whole tree to work with. I was intrigued by the way the blood orange’s deep, rich citrus flavor played with herbal tones, and decided to take it in a more bitter direction. So, I paired it with the bitterest thing in the in-laws’ liquor cabinet: Averna.

Averna is an Amaro, that is an Italian liqueur that is both bitter and sweet. While Averna is in fact both of these things, it definitely majors in the bitter and minors in the sweet. It has a strong, bitter root flavor with hints of root beer, but even stronger hints of what you’d think old-timey medicine would taste like. I realize I’m not giving it a very promising description, but we actually love the stuff. Small doses of it do a great job of bringing a complex, bitter edge to a drink. Combining it with blood orange juice gave it a rich, velvety taste, adding some of that sweetness it doesn’t have on its own.

For our base, we used red vermouth, to accent both the herbs of the Averna and the sweetness of the blood oranges. It made for a nice, unusual low-alcohol cocktail.


  • 2 oz red vermouth
  • 1/2 oz Averna
  • 1 oz blood orange juice
  • blood orange twist, for garnish


  • In an old fashioned glass, combine all of the liquid ingredients.
  • Add ice to fill the glass.
  • Garnish with the twist.

Roberts & June