Hey, we only get so many hot days a year here in San Francisco, so when the season approaches, I like to be prepared and have a cooling cocktail at the ready. Last year, it was all about the michelada. But as the summer came to a close, and we journeyed to perhaps the hottest place of all, Palm Springs, I enjoyed a spectacularly refreshing drink at Spencer’s, called the Bicicletta.
The drink is simplicity itself, just Campari, white wine and a spritz of club soda, but the whole is more than the sum of its parts. I am fond of Campari in general, but especially on hot days. Aside from memories of sweltering days on the Amalfi Coast, I find that Campari actually has a cooling effect. The white wine rounds out the cocktail, mellowing the intense bittersweet of the amaro, and of course the club gives it a fizzy kick. They are surprisingly easy to sip on during the dog day afternoons when nothing else is feasible. Luckily, the club soda and ice ensure that you can do so without getting completely fuore come un balcone.
1 part Campari
2 parts light white wine, like Pinot Grigio
good splash club soda
Pour ingredients over ice in a wine glass and stir to combine. Sip while fanning yourself and watching the world go by from behind your enormous Fendi sunglasses. Repeat as necessary.