if someone were to ask you, "what's your favorite cocktail?" how would you respond? would it be a quick, off-the-cuff, run-of-the-mill answer like, the cosmo? sure, cocktal trends come and go, but favorites last a lifetime.
my favorite cocktail has a bit of a story behind it, the infamous bellini. the name is as beautiful as the drink itself, a flute filled with a complimentary combination of white peach nectar and champagne. this world famous drink originated at harry's bar in venice, italy where, according to perfectcocktail.net, giuseppe "harry" cipriani was inspired by the venetian painter, giovanni bellini. this bar also gained its popularity from a recognizable list of patrons, including ernest hemingway and orson welles.
i must admit, my first experience with this drink is likely what prompted my prejudice towards them; my mom and stepdad brought me to the restaurant harry cipriani at the sherry netherland hotel in new york city at the ripe age of sixteen. being the impressionable teenager that i was, i could not help but take in the entire atmosphere; i was immediately entranced by the buzzing environment. the drink sitting in front of me was a bellini with veuve clicquot, a distinguishable champagne with an interesting history (i recommend picking up a copy of 'the widow clicquot'). the bubbles from the champagne along with the sweet nectar that left a delicious after-taste is something i will never forget.
fortunately i had the opportunity to extend my affinity with the bellini beyond manhattan. while studying abroad in italy, i traveled to venice for a weekend with my dad and brother. among other wonderful experiences in the city, i had the utmost delight of tasting a bellini from its birthplace, harry's bar. as i sipped on my bellini i couldn't be happier, i was gleeful and elated, with a smile showcasing every pearly white.
in the end, my favorite cocktail has a long history and personal story to go with it. but i wonder.. if i were a cocktail, would i be a bellini or something a bit more complicated? comparing oneself to the complexities of mixology brings a whole new level of creativity.