Grab a grappa


I'm always looking around for something interesting to drink (I think there's a word for that?), particularly in the hot, sticky summer when my beloved Highland Park scotch loses some of its toasty, smoky appeal. As soon as I get some free time I'm going to try out this recipe for "fake grappa," courtesy of the Village Voice:

Cherries, which are just coming into season now, are sprinkled with sugar and soaked in vodka for a few months. ... The cherries, which lose their bright color and turn brownish, absorb a dangerous amount of alcohol over the months of soaking—we call it lethal fruit, and it's always what puts me over the edge after a long, wine-fueled holiday feast.

Real grappa, of course, is made from grape leftovers and was designed as a sort of "waste not, want not" drink. In Italy they use it to chase espresso, in which case it's called "Amazza Caffè:"  literally, the "coffee killer."