See more of the story

Alagna “Baglio Baiata” Vermouth Bianco

This is not your Uncle Frank’s vermouth, although it certainly could and perhaps should be. The Alagna “Baglio Baiata” Vermouth Bianco ($15 for a 1-liter bottle) manages to be sweet but bracing, a mouthful of flavor and energy and persistence — and deliciousness. This inzolio-based beauty from Sicily fairly assaults the nose with floral, fruit and spice aromas, then packs in citrus and nutty flavors before finishing with a sharpish edge. It’s perfect for a traditional (non-dry) martini or can be blended with sparkling wine for a swell low-alcohol cocktail (it’s 16.5%, low for a vermouth). Or serve it at either end of an evening, with cheeses and/or salty appetizers early on and as a digestif of sorts after a meal.

Available at Haskell’s, Farmington, Richfield, Lakeside and Lake Aire (Duluth).

Bill Ward