Last week, I had the excellent opportunity to sample some killer cocktails from Amaro Drinkery Italia, the little sister to Alec Schuler’s Arugula in Boulder. The food menu is small plates similar to what you might find next door, but with a simpler palate; lovely cheese plates and salumi platters cozy up next to fresh salads or portions of braised pork, spare ribs and poached sausages.
And while the food is easily as good as that served just a few feet away at Arugula, the real draw here are the cocktails. Mixologists Dante and Bianca have been given free reign behind the bar and have come up with an extensive menu of seasonal specialties as well as their own twist on perennial favorites. The Fire in the Sky is a must-try, as theatrical as it is tasty. If you’re uncertain what to order, don’t worry; Dante and Bianca are there to help, to educate, and to encourage you to try something new and different. And with no cocktails ringing up at more than $12, you won’t feel like you’ve been pressured to order the most expensive thing on the menu just because it’s hip.
Next week, on October 16th, you too can get a taste of this hip little spot as some of Boulder’s top mixologists, including Bianca Huggins (Amaro) and Greg Van Wagner (Oak At Fourteenth), will be shaking it up to see who can mix up the best Amari and 303 cocktails. As the mixologists compete, guests will be able to enjoy small bites and cocktail samples from the contestants, and ultimately decide the winner.
The Mixology Contest benefits The School Food Project, a local project dedicated to getting healthy foods in schools. Tickets are $20 in advance, $30 at the door.