Cocktail: Firm Handshake | Bartender: Josh Lindley

I have been fortunate to be invited by Sprits of Italy to visit a bunch of Italian Distilleries in the last year. The most recent trip had me making a cocktail (which happily ended up being more like 50 cocktails) at Beer and Food Attraction.

The parameters of what I had to do with the drink were simple enough; make a cocktail using ingredients made by the sponsors of this (awesome) trade show.

We were in southern Mexico at the time and so didn’t really have access to a lot of the sponsor products. However there was lots of fresh fruit and a well stocked liquor section in the local grocery store.

I love tropical drinks. Creating a balance between sweet and tangy fruit and bitter, spicy liqueurs is what I find most interesting about them. After looking through the (awesome) list of products that I would have access to at the show, A Firm Handshake is what i came up with.

For those unfamiliar, a Toronto Cocktail is like a Manhattan with Fernet in place of vermouth and that’s where I started here, to represent my hometown while overseas. But as mentioned, I wanted something juicy and tangy to really showcase some of the things on offer at the trade show.

30ml Rye Whisk(e)y
25ml Fernet Branca
30ml Passionfruit Pulp
25ml Grapefruit Juice
10ml Simple Syrup

Combine all ingredients in a shaker tin. Add ice and shake hard for 10-12 seconds. Strain into a collins glass. Top with soda OR if you have access to a really bright, citrusy wheat beer, try that out too.


Josh Lindley
Co-Creator at Bartender Atlas
Josh Lindley has been bartending in Toronto since 2007. Before working for Hendrick's Gin as a Brand Ambassador he was bar manager at Campagnolo and a hired gun at Bar Isabel. He has contributed to many magazines, tv shows and newspapers with his recipes and opinions. Currently pouring at Chantecler, he enjoys being an ambassador to Toronto and talking about horror movies, punk rock and basketball.
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