Looking to Update Your Bourbon? Try Nocino

Bourbon's warmth and nocino's subtle sweeteness create an easy-sipping cocktail perfect for all seasons.
Ghost Story / Photo by Aaron Graubart

Courtesy David Yee, bartender, Watershed Kitchen & Bar, Columbus, OH

Many craft distilleries have tasting rooms to show off their spirits, but at Watershed Distillery in Columbus, Ohio, visitors can head to a full-service bar to select cocktails from an innovative menu made over with a new theme each season. After a humorous IKEA-themed drink menu, the latest has a “survival” motif, featuring drinks that hint at camping, hiking and other outdoorsy pursuits. A portion of the proceeds benefits a local parks organization.

The Ghost Story, of course, refers to tales told around the campfire. “It’s a spiced but refreshing cocktail,” says bartender David Yee. “The warm notes from the Bourbon play well with the subtle sweetness of the nocino.” The end result is “an approachable, all-season cocktail.”

Get to know Nocino 

This Italian liqueur, pronounced no-CHEE-no, is typically made with green walnuts. It’s a deep-hued, nutty sipper with a tinge of natural bitterness. Check out the Spirit Buying Guide for recommendations.

Smoked Whiskey Campfire Cocktail

The Ghost Story Cocktail

Ingredients
  • 1 ounce Bourbon
  • 1¼ ounces nocino
  • ¼ ounce lemon juice
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Lemon peel
Directions

In cocktail shaker, combine first four ingredients with ice. Shake well, then strain into rocks glass over large ice cube. Twist lemon peel over drink to express oils, then drop in glass or discard.

Published on September 6, 2018
About the Author
Kara Newman 
Spirits Editor

Kara Newman reviews spirits and writes about spirits and cocktail trends for Wine Enthusiast. She's the author of several cocktail books, including Shake.Stir.Sip. and NIGHTCAP: More than 40 Cocktails to Close Out Any Evening, which debuts in September 2018. Email: spirits@wineenthusiast.net



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