Brian Bartels of Fedora in New York City authored his “Black Squirrel” amaro recipe based on his family’s unique history in Wisconsin. So how about we let him do the talking here:
The Black Squirrel is famous in the Bartels Family. It’s our hometown bar when we all get back together in Reedsburg, Wisconsin, the Butter Capital of the World.
When we opened Fedora in New York, I wanted to put on an Old Fashioned that was original but also paid homage to the Wisconsin legacy of Old Fashioneds. We debuted the Black Squirrel Old Fashioned in January 2011 and it’s been the most popular cocktail ever since.
As someone who loves amaro, I am always looking for new styles and recipes. Using the flavors and influences of our Black Squirrel hit like a lightning bolt, as those same ingredients (citrus, maple, toasted pecan, cinnamon) are elements I am happy to engage any time of the day – even for breakfast!
And it’s worth mentioning how black squirrels are everywhere in Wisconsin, but they’re actually rare in most parts of the world. This is our way of continuing to celebrate them through the wonderful world of amaro.
Thank you, Brian, for sharing your tradition with all of us!