Drink of the Week: Linie Aquavit

A once-obscure Scandinavian spirit, aquavit is continuing to gain popularity in the U.S. with more availability of traditional Nordic brands and dozens of American distillers now making versions. As we explore in our September/October 2019 issue, bartenders are also increasingly reaching for the spirit to create cocktails with distinct flavor profiles. “My go-to aquavit is Linie from Norway,” says Chantal Tseng, head bartender at D.C.’s Petworth Citizen & Reading Room. Linie Aquavit has been produced in Norway using the same recipe since 1821 with a neutral base distilled from potatoes and a caraway-forward botanical bill. But where they diverge from other traditional aquavits happens after distillation, when the spirit is put into ex-sherry casks and loaded onto a ship for a voyage down to Australia and back for four months of aging at sea. “The sherry cask elements complement the spices beautifully and the caraway, fennel and anise character is superb in cocktails,” says Tseng. For inspiration, check out our aquavit cocktail gallery, or simply enjoy the spirit sipped neat. $29.99, klwines.com.