How to Make a Paper Plane Cocktail like Tom Cruise


This cocktail’s name is a mouthful: “Fighter Weapon School, a.k.a Top Gun,” which is a riff on the Paper Plane cocktail, which is a riff on the Last Word. Let’s untangle that. 

The Last Word is a cocktail that is made with four equal parts of gin, green chartreuse, maraschino liqueur, and lime juice. About 10 years ago, bartender Sam Ross used that distinctive “four equal parts” philosophy to create the Paper Plane, a bourbon cocktail with Aperol, amaro, and lime juice. Then, Frederic Zemmour of Riviera 31 in Los Angeles created this Top Gun-inspired recipe by adding a dash of passion fruit juice to lighten the cocktail’s bitterness with fresh, summery flavor.

What the hell does Tom Cruise have to do with this, you ask?

The Fighter Weapons School, located in California, is called Top Gun by the student pilots who go through it. It inspired Cruise’s most iconic film, Top Gun. The Paper Plane is, obviously, plane-themed. Riviera 31 just connected the dots.

So mix up a “Fighter Weapon School, a.k.a Top Gun” when you’re in the mood for something dangerous and delicious.

Ingredients

  • 3/4 oz. bourbon
  • 3/4 oz. Aperol
  • 3/4 oz.  Amaro Nonino Quintessentia
  • 3/4 oz. lemon juice
  • splash passion fruit juice

Instructions

Add ingredients to a shaker. Shake with ice, then strain into a cocktail glass.


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