Drink of the Week: El Americano Blanco

El Americano Blanco.Now, please, don’t take the name of the this mixed beverage, my own creation, too literally. Yes, we live in times when basic human decency is on trial, but trust me, the drink which, my poor high school Spanish and imaginary Italian notwithstanding, translates as “the white American” is not in any way inspired by our current president’s voting base. If I ever create a drink called “the White Nationalist,” that’s what we’ll be talking about, though it would probably be very bitter and extremely poisonous. No, it’s a simple and quite wholesome clear variation on an Americano, as much as a White Negroni is a clear variation on the traditional, more dark colored beverage.

This one is a bit less sweet and bitter than most Americano variations, but that doesn’t mean it’s lacking in flavor. It’s a simple, tasty and refreshing drink but one that might be open to even more variation. Consider this recipe a starting point.

El Americano Blanco

1 or 1 1/2 ounces bianco vermouth
1 or 1 1/2 ounces Salers Aperitif
Soda water
1 lime slice (damn near obligatory garnish)

Build this in either a rocks glass, a highball or a Tom Collins glass over plentiful ice. Depending on the size of your glass, use either one ounce of the vermouth and Salers for the smaller rocks glass or one and a half ounces for the larger highball or Collins glass. Top off with soda water and stir, but leave room for your lime slice. For whatever reason, it’s needed here to balance out the flavors.


El Americano Blanco is a somewhat hard to describe, little fortified spritzer. It’s lightly sweet, lightly bitter and it doesn’t seem to completely come together without that lime slice. There are other beverages that are supposed to be similar to Salers – a gentian root flavored vermouth-like number – that might also work, but I didn’t have any of those on hand. I did try this with two outstanding bianco vermouths — Dolin’s and the delightfully sweet Cinzano 1757. Both worked pretty darn well, but the version with Cinzano was decidely more mellow, a nice contrast to the more astringent Salers iteration.

I could go on, but that’s really the whole story. Don’t forget the lime slice.