Tequila cocktails don’t always have to be summery or fruity affairs. It’s easy to relegate the agave-based booze to poolside margaritas, but there’s a world of possibilities out there for what is actually a very versatile spirit. Case in point: the Teatro. It’s a riff on the gin-based Bijou, crafted by Sother Teague for the Mexican-inspired East Village cocktail bar, Eterea. Its inspiration was a popular tipple in the same city over a century ago, but with so many cocktails these days, what is old is new again.
While the inspiration is vintage, the use of tequila, in addition to an equal part sweet vermouth, definitely changes the equation on this one. The earthy spice of the reposado and intense licorice notes of the Green Chartreuse give it an almost Sazerac quality but there’s also a generous Manhattan feel from the heavier hand of sweet vermouth. (Carpano Antica works particularly well.) For such a simple cocktail, there are lots of layers here to explore. And with no overproof spirits in the mix (not counting the Chartreuse), it’s extremely easy to empty several Nick & Nora glasses of this one.
1 ¼ oz. reposado tequila
1 ¼ oz. sweet vermouth
½ oz. Green Chartreuse
2 dashes orange bitters
Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass over ice and stir until well-chilled. Strain into a Nick & Nora glass (or a coupe will do) and garnish with a cocktail cherry.