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Paper Plane Cocktail

Try this take on a whiskey sour with bitterness courtesy of the Italian amaro Nonino, with hits of citrus from Aperol and lemon juice, a recipe from Paul Feinstein’s comprehensive new book, Italian Cocktails.

Paper plane cocktail and bottle of amaro

The Paper Plane cocktail, made with Amaro Nonino, Aperol, and bourbon.

Italian cocktail culture finally gets its bible with Paul Feinstein's definitive new book, Italy Cocktails—An Elegant Collection of Over 100 Recipes Inspired by ItaliaTo source the recipes, the veteran food and travel writer looked to bars and brands from Italy to the United States and beyond, resulting in a collection that spans aperitivo to digestivo and everything in between. You'll find inspiration to try new spirits and make creative cocktails such as the Paper Plane, a take on a whiskey sour that Feinstein attributes to bartender Sam Ross.

You could argue that the modern drinking world was truly introduced to Amaro Nonino when famed New York bartender Sam Ross (also the creator of the Penicillin) invented this cocktail that consists of a maximum of ve ingredients, with the same amounts of each in 2007. The Paper Plane is a take on a whiskey sour but adds the bitterness of amaro with the refreshing citrus notes from the Aperol.

Excerpted with permission from Italy Cocktails — An Elegant Collection of Over 100 Recipes Inspired by Italia by Paul Feinstein published by Cider Mill Press, December 2023.

Paper Plane Cocktail

Paper Plane Cocktail

Recipe by Sam Ross
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  • ¾ oz. Amaro Nonino Quintessentia

  • ¾ oz. Aperol

  • ¾ oz. bourbon

  • ¾ oz. fresh lemon juice


  • Mix all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker lled with ice.
  • Shake vigorously and strain the cocktail into a coupe.

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