Liqueur Review: SNAP

SnapSNAP
Liqueur
Final Grade: B+
Price: $30 (750ml)

SNAP is an organic liqueur* produced by Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction (AITA, for short), a Philadelphia-based design company. They previously launched the spirit ROOT, which has caught on with a lot of bartenders around the country.

Fresh out of the bottle, SNAP's aroma is warm and sweet like gingerbread, with a soft honey color. Sipped neap, SNAP's flavor is spicy and sweet, with a slightly syrupy texture and a strong bite. (This liqueur is 80 proof — 40 % alcohol — so it has some kick to it.)

You can taste the molasses in it, along with the cinnamon and, further back, the ginger. I was expecting the ginger to be a little more forward in the flavor profile, and while it's definitely there, it's just one part of the mix.

SNAP was formulated with the flavors of lebkuchen in mind, the traditional German Christmas cookie made with molasses, honey and spices (including cloves and nutmeg, in addition to cinnamon and ginger). Some have described lebkuchen as the ancestor of ginger snaps, thus the name of this spirit.

SNAP is fine to drink neat, but the flavor and sweetness soon overwhelmed my palate. (It's made with blackstrap molasses, which is powerful stuff.) I decided to mix it in a cocktail to see what it would do. The website for AITA lists several cocktail suggestions for their liqueurs, and I settled on a variation of one of them.

 

Ginger Rye

2 oz Rye Whiskey
1 oz SNAP
1/2 oz Lemon Juice
1/2 oz Simple Syrup
2 Dashes Fee Brothers Whiskey Barrel-Aged Bitters

Shake the ingredients with ice, then strain into an ice-filled rocks glass. 

 

For the whiskey, I used High West Whiskey Double Rye, and for the syrup, I used homemade Demerara Sugar Syrup (2:1, sugar to water). The spiciness of the rye complements the flavors of SNAP nicely, and the lemon juice balanced well with the sweetness.

This is where SNAP has some very interesting potential, as it makes for an excellent cocktail ingredient. In addition to rye whiskey or bourbon, I can see SNAP mixing very well with an aged rum. This is a unique spirit — not the kind of thing you'd drink everyday. But it's definitely recommended as part of the mixologist's arsenal.

Report Card

Quality Grade: B+
Value Grade: B
Final Grade: B+

*There is some question of whether or not SNAP is technically a liqueur. I've chosen to list it as such for convenience sake, as that is what I think it most closely resembles.

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