Anfora is primarily a wine bar. Like its sister restaurants, dell'Anima and L'Artusi, it is known for its well-chosen and often unique wine selections, made in large part by partner Joe Campanale. What you might not know is that Joe carefully crafts his cocktail menus as well, along with his beverage team at the three restaurants, using seasonal ingredients, and sometimes tipping a hat to regulars—one cocktail, the Gilliland, is a Manhattan variation named after a beloved customer who always ordered Manhattans but moved to California. Although several Italian ingredients dance about the cocktail menu, it is somewhat international and offbeat, with items like Bonal, lavender, and chamomile all making appearances.
The bar itself is sleek and modern, with three enormous communal leather banquettes on the opposite wall. It was buzzing on a recent Wednesday night—no sign of August out-of-town vacations to be found. But summer shone through in one of the cocktail selections: the Farmer's Friend (created by Damien Good, Assistant Beverage Director at L'Artusi) is a fruity drink but not overly sweet, like many others, resulting in a well-balanced summery tipple.
Recipe, after the jump!
12 blueberries 3 sprigs fresh thyme simple syrup to taste (depending on ripeness of blueberries) 0.5 ounce lemon juice 0.5 ounce hibiscus tea* 2 ounces white rum (Flor de Cana recommended)
In mixing glass, muddle the blueberries and thyme. Add simple syrup, lemon, hibiscus tea and rum. Add ice and shake. Strain into rocks glass with ice, and garnish with a sprig of thyme.
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