The Monarch: French Trinity Spiritual
The Monarch as a Manhattan replacement is easy to conceptualize. Sub cognac for bourbon (or better still, rye). The vermouth role is played by Bonal Quinquina. Bitters, orange bitters.
Yanni Goes in With Bonal
When guests survey our cocktail list, one of the most common questions is, "What is Quinquina?" Except they pronounce it phonetically, and its actually pronounced "keen-keena".
Quinquina is a generic term the French use to describe quinine-based bitters or apertifs. Quinine comes from the bark of cinchona trees in the Andes Mountains of Chile and Peru.
Bonal is made of grape must, bark, gentian (a floral tonic) and the famed herbs of Chartreuse; the blend was introduced in 1865 by a monk named Hippolyte Bonal. It would be unfair to sum up quinquina as, "like vermouth." It is serious and contemplative. Though technically an apertif, Bonal has enough richness -and certainly bitterness- to get a pass for after dinner. Served neat (and a slight chill) or with a twist are both enjoyable methods.
Posted January 26, 2012 • Filed under Spirits
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