Palermo has more up its sleeve than out-of-this-world food. Now, I know Sicily is famous for its wines and trust me when I say I drank my fair share. However, my friend Salvatore Spatafora introduced me to an innovative cocktail bar: Bocum Mixology. Located in the heart of the old town, the bi-level lounge opened in 2015 and is the Sicilian capital’s first proper cocktail bar with a focus on mixology.
Downstairs is a straight-forward winebar where you can sip those Etna Rossi, Etna Bianchi, grilli and other Sicilian specialties (perhaps even the Pomice?). However, the cozy second-floor is where the mixology magic happens.
Low tables and seating enhance the second-floor lounge’s cozy, feels-like-home vibes, while prints of what could easily be family portraits adorn the walls. I felt like I was sitting down for a drink in whatever the contemporary equivalent of the Downton Abbey pre-dinner cocktail room was. Here, I sampled one of my all-time favorite concoctions: Frangiflutti cocktail.
The Italian word for breakwater, the Frangifluitti cocktail is made with London Dry Sea gin, Ancho Reyes, citrus juice (a mix of lemon, lime and orange), sugar, seawater, lemon foam and seaweed. The Mexican chili liqueur and Spanish gin are an homage to the island’s diverse influences and heritage. They start by making a gin sour then by adding the seawater, which enhances the botanical flavors of the fruit. Then topped with lemon meringue-like foam and garnished with seaweed!
Now, I’m a beach bum so this drink was dreamy. I love gin and I love citrus and the flavors of the sea, and Bocum stole my heart by incorporating some of my favorite things into one nifty libation. Everything blended together seamlessly, making the Frangiflutti cocktail a refreshing sipper encompassing the spirit of Sicily: bright citrus, the sea and the exotic flair that characterizes much of the island’s cuisine.
Founded by Stefania Milano and Franco Virga, Bocum has more than 500 labels of mostly organic and biodynamic wines–both local and international as well liquors and spirits, many of which are infused with organically grown fruits, vegetables and aromatic herbs. Barman Gianluca Di Giorgio oversees the cocktail program while sommelier Antonio Corsano manages the downstairs enoteca.
Via dei Cassari, 6
Open Wednesday to Monday, 6pm to 2am