You heard it first on the Fool's Paradise with Rex programme on WFMU. Here is your recipe for the official Grade "A" Fancy holiday cocktail for 2023 —
Beyond the Valley of the Ultra Blitzen
1 oz. Cocci Americano Aperitif
1/4 oz. Verino Mastiha Antica liqueur
2 tsp. cava
Stir first three liquids over ice; strain into a cocktail glass. Add cava. For garnish, depending on the size of the apple, and your glass, cut a slice or triangular half slice and slide it into glass. (Yes, we sat the garnish on the rim to make it pretty for the photo, but to get the best of both ingestibles, you want the apple to bob in the glass to absorb some of that aromatic broth. They're perfect together.)
Shopping: If you're in NYC all the boozes can be found at Astor Wines & Spirits: the Nicaraguan rum, French aperitif, Greek liqueur, and Spanish cava. Then just a short walk up to the greenmarket for a fresh apple.
Bottle notes: the light, dry rum, the sweet/bitter Cocchi, and Spanish bubbly will probably be familiar territory. The liqueur was new to us and pretty exciting, which is why we worked this year's cocktail around its heady floral and herbal notes. The ingredient mastiha, also called mastic, is made from the resin of a variety of evergreen bush found only on the isle of Chios. It's used in baking, for a natural chewing gum, and is said to have medicinal properties. Lots more online, should you choose that rabbit hole.