Taste of Milan: Puglia Memories at the Park Hyatt

This is what happens when a barman from Lecce goes travelling… Giacomo Maroccia who used to work for our friend Davide de Matteis at 300 Mila, Lecce, left his home town quite a while ago to see the world and make new experiences. He travelled the US at first, remained in Texas for a while, then came back to Italy to go studying. We popped into him working part time at the Park Hyatt (Via Tommaso Grossi 1, Milan, Tel: +39 02 8821 1234), Milan, the other day, where he prepared us a couple of Spicy Spritzs, his own variation of the classic, as a welcome drink. Since it’s the perfect thing to have on hot summer days like these (and since he used to be one of our favorite barmen in the area and we’re missing him a lot), we want to share the recipe with you. Here we go: ENJOY!!

Spicy Spritz

4 cl Tequila Blanco
5-6 Leaves of Mint
1 Fresh squeezed Lime
1 Teaspoon brown sugar
Ginger root
Red currant
Soda water
Ginger ale

Place mint leaves, ginger and red currant into a large red wine
glass. Squeeze the juice from a cut lime over it. Add the brown sugar, a splash of club soda and gently smash the the ingredients with a muddler. Add ice (preferably cubes),then Tequila and top-up with ginger ale. Stir gently and garnish with a mint sprig.

Fashion Tip: Swimwear & Bikinis by Sucrette, Lecce

Looking for beautiful swimsuits and bikinis for your holiday in Puglia? It’s as easy as that: Drop by Terry Calogiuri’s recently opened boutique Sucrette in the heart of Lecce.

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Cocktail Course: How to Prepare Hugo Spritz

A tasty alternative to the classic Spritz: Hugo, once invented in Bolzano, North of Italy, is becoming more and more popular all around the south. At 300 Mila Lounge, Lecce (according to Gambero Rosso one of the 30 BEST aperitivo bars in ITALY; Via 140° Reg. Fanteria, Tel. 0832288383) it’s one of the top sellers, especially in the winter, since it’s a bit sweeter and not quite as strong as the Campari or Aperol Spritz. Put ice cubes in a glass, add the juice of 1/2 lime, then 2 cl of elder liquor. Pick a couple of fresh mint leves and squeeze them beside the ice cubes. Add Bellavista or any kind of dry Prosecco, according to your taste.

Cocktail Course: How to Carve Roses out of Strawberries

Here’s how you prepare one of the most beautiful and impressive cocktail decorations: Cutting a rose out of a strawberry. Seen at Palazzo Personè, Lecce, right beside the famous Basilica Santa Croce (Via Umberto I, no. 5). “All you need are strawberries of a certain size”, says Andrea, the bar chef. Insert a long wooden stick from the bottom side. Cut tiny  carvings like slices into the fresh fruit, as shown in the video, without removing the green stem part. Start from the bottom, finish on top.