Who said Amaretto was a thing of the past? Shag carpets, shades of browns and mustards, flared pants, and the soulful sound of Al Green singing “Let’s Stay Together” flash through your head with the first whiff of the nutty-sweet liquor. Sure, that iconically squared bottle might bring you straight to the 1970s, but Amaretto was first made in Saronno during the Renaissance. Adding peach pits to brandy to soften its punch, the sweet and distinctly nutty liqueur rapidly became a staple.
Gaining its flavor from almonds, apricot pits, or peach pits, the delightful spirit has been a popular addition to cocktails in the United States since it first appeared on the scene in the 1960s. Often whipped into culinary delights such as Tiramisu or an Almondine sauce, Amaretto adds a nuanced and bittersweet edge, and lends itself to a wide range of uses. We’ve put together some of our favorite cocktails to make with Amaretto. Let us know what your favorites are in the comments below.
An absolute classic, this simple, straightforward sipper first became popular in the 1970s. Using a blended or single malt scotch or bourbon as the base, amaretto adds a touch of bittersweet depth to transform the dignified liquor into something a little more approachable.
▢ 2 oz Scotch
▢ 1/4 oz Amaretto
- Stir the scotch and amaretto in a cocktail shaker with ice.
Strain into a whiskey glass with fresh ice.
Pair with: a worn leather chair, a cigar, and of course a freshly rewound copy of Francis Ford Coppola’s masterpiece.
Amaretto Coffee with Whipped Cream and Orange Oil
A perfect dessert cocktail, the sweet and nutty qualities of amaretto are a natural fit to freshly pressed espresso. The addition of an orange infused olive oil and whipped cream adds a touch of freshness and lots of delicious creaminess to round out this delicious drink.
▢ 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
▢ 2 shots of espresso
▢ 1/4 oz Amaretto
▢ 1 tbsp Orange Oil
- In a small bowl, whisk the cream until soft peaks form.
- Stir the Amaretto into your coffee, top it with whipped cream, and drizzle with Infused Orange Oil to serve.
Pair with: biscotti, a Scandinavian noir novel, and bittersweet chocolate.
Amaretto on the Beach
Bringing the best of a ‘70’s vacation straight into your home, allow this taste of paradise to transport you to pink sunsets, soft sand and a warm island breeze.
▢ 1 oz coconut rum
▢ 1 oz Amaretto
▢ 2 oz fresh orange juice
▢ 2 oz pineapple juice
▢ 1/2 oz grenadine
- Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and shake rum, amaretto, orange juice and pineapple juice until cold.
Strain into another glass filled with ice and top with grenadine. Optional garnish: maraschino cherry.
Pair with: patchouli, spray tans, and Tommy Bahama.
Marrying the classic Margarita and Amaretto Sour, this version of the favorite beach sipper swaps out orange liqueur for the Italian almond liqueur. Tart, tangy, and just a touch sweet, the nuanced almond addition adds depth and body to this refreshing cocktail.
▢ 1 oz fresh lime juice
▢ 1 oz Amaretto
▢ 2 oz tequila
▢ 1/4 oz Lemon Blossom Honey Simple
▢ 1 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice
▢ 2 oz freshly squeezed orange juice
▢ Sicilian Sea Salt with Organic Lemon for the rim
- Make the simple by dissolving 1 tbsp honey with 1 tbsp hot water.
- Rim a glass with Sicilian Sea Salt with Organic Lemon and fill with ice.
- Add lime juice, Amaretto, tequila, lemon blossom honey simple, lemon juice and orange juice into a cocktail shaker with ice.
Shake and strain into the salt rimmed glass.
Pair with: antipasti, Miley Cyrus, and a pile of friends.