It’s rare that a recently invented cocktail takes the world by storm (ok, exaggeration) and makes it into the annals of cocktail legend (ok, more exaggeration). However if there was any modern cocktail to show as an example it would be this, the Paper Plane. The original paper plane cocktail was only created in 2007
The great thing about this cocktail is it’s known as an equal parts cocktail. This means you don’t actually need a measuring device, as long as each addition stays the same volume as the first. If I’m bartending at a friend’s place and they don’t have a jigger, I’ll just make equal parts cocktails using a shot glass.
Paper Plane Ingredients
The official IBA ingredients list for the original paper plane are as specified:
3 cl (30 ml) Bourbon
3 cl (30 ml) Amaro Nonino
3 cl (30 ml) Aperol
3 cl (30 ml) Lemon Juice (freshly squeezed)
To make the cocktail is simple; add all ingredients to a shaker with ice and give a hard shake for a few seconds before straining into a glass. Here I’m using my Riedel Nick & Nora’s, but you can use whatever you like. You cannot forget the best part though, the garnish: a maraschino brandied cherry and a paper plane for show.
Paper Plane Cocktail Substitutions
While altering a cocktail usually changes the cocktail (after all, with only a few ingredients the flavor profile is easy to distort) there is one substitution I’m a fan of with the paper plane. This is the substitution of Amaro Montenegro for Amaro Nonino.
I actually think this is a popular move since Amaro Montenegro is more commonplace than Nonino, and in my personal opinion it improves the drink.
If you do sub Nonino for Montenegro, then I will also suggest subbing Aperol for Campari. The added sweetness of Montenegro definitely benefits from the added bitterness of Campari.
The Original Paper Plane Cocktail
- Cocktail Shaker
- 30 ml Bourbon I recommend Buffalo Trace
- 30 ml Amaro Nonino can sub for Amaro Montenegro if you can't find Nonino
- 30 ml Aperol should sub for Campari if you subbed the Nonino with Montenegro
- 30 ml Lemon Juice freshly squeezed
- Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake for a few seconds then double strain into a glass.
- Garnish with a maraschino cherry and a paper plane.