Cynar is an artichoke based bittersweet liqueur made from an infusion of 13 herbs and plants. The name of the drink derives from Cynar scolymus, the botanical name for artichoke, as artichoke leaves lend the distinctive flavour. The secret recipe, which has remained the same since its creation, is based on some of the natural substances found in the artichokes, including ‘cynarine’. Created by Angelo Dalle Molle, a Venetian entrepreneur and philanthropist, Cynar was launched in Italy in 1952. Since then, the brand has grown and is now distributed internationally. Cynar became popular in Italy thanks to the first ads (during the Italian “Carosello”) performed by the famous actor, Ernesto Calindri and the claim “Cynar, against the attrition of modern life”.
Like its older sibling, Cynar 70 Proof is crafted from the same secret recipe of 13 infused herbs and plants.
Cynar (33 abv)
Visual: Medium brown.
Nose: Distinctly herbal and vegetal. It reminds me of forest floor.
Taste: Much like molasses in character with a tight, bitter edge that creeps in after a few seconds. Quite similar to sweet vermouth, but more intriguing.
Finish: Medium-long with the sweet and the bitter playing tag.
Overall: Unique, easily quaffable and mixable. A better choice than many Italian vermouths on the market.
GSN Rating: A-
Cynar 70 (70 proof)
Visual: Dark reddish-brown.
Nose: Sharper and noticeably more alcoholic than the regular Cynar. A lot of high notes with much of the softness kept in hiding.
Taste: Strong, less sweet and slightly more bitter. Similar in some respects to German herbal digestif bitters. The herbs are well blended and aggressive.
Finish: Long with more dry, bitter and nearly quinine-like tones lingering for a good while.
Overall: An entirely different animal than the flagship Cynar. Comparing the two is nigh impossible. They are both excellent in differing ways. This will definitely hold up in a mixed drink better than the regular Cynar, but you will also have to adjust the sweetener up a notch if the drink calls for it. Kudos to Cynar for adding a new dimension to their portfolio!
GSN Rating: A
For more information go to: Cynar