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The Modern Bar Cart Podcast

Dec 14, 2023

In this spirited discussion with Alain Royer and Henry Preiss of Preiss Imports, some of the topics we discuss include:

  • What precisely Izarra liqueur is and the geographic and cultural forces that allowed it to remain more of a regional specialty, while Chartreuse enjoyed wider exposure. 

  • How other specialty liqueurs, like Jaegermeister and Luxardo Maraschino, managed to burst the bonds of their relatively “niche” statuses and become heavyweights in the cocktail world.

  • The unique culture and flavors of the Basque nation, a people who transcend political and geographic boundaries and holds tenaciously to their own distinct identity even in today’s increasingly remixed and digital world.

  • Then, of course, we taste through Izarra’s two flagship offerings: Izarra Verte and Izarra Jaune. We compare and contrast these spirits with their logical Chartreuse analogues and explore the best service methods and use cases for each.

  • We wrap up the conversation by reviewing how Henry and his team are rolling out this beautiful duo of alpine liqueurs in liquor stores and bars across the country and give you some insights on how to get your hands on a bottle.

  • Along the way, we cover the medicinal underpinnings of our contemporary genepies and amari, the crucial role of the Armagnac region in the production of these Basque spirits, the one Izarra product that didn’t quite survive the test of time, and much, much more.