What Is Cynar

Have you ever heard of Cynar? Even if you haven't, chances are you've seen it on a bar menu or in your local liquor store. It's an Italian made from artichokes and other botanicals, and has been around since 1952.

Cynar is an amaro (Italian herbal liqueur), similar in flavor to the popular Averna, but much less sweet. It has a strong, earthy flavor with notes of artichoke, herbs, spice and caramel. The bitterness is balanced by its sweetness, giving it a complex yet smooth finish. This makes it an excellent digestif after a meal or enjoyed neat as an aperitif.

The spirit's name comes from cynarin, an acid found in artichokes believed to aid digestion. The flavor of Cynar is subtle in comparison to some of its competitors such as Fernet-Branca or Campari wich can be much too for some palates. Instead, Cynar delivers a mellow yet bold flavor with vegetal undertones and a sumptuous caramel finish that is truly sublime.

If you're looking for something unique and interesting to add to your bar cart or cocktail repertoire then look no further than Cynar! Whether enjoyed straight up over ice or mixed with or tonic water as an Italian spritz; Cynar is sure to please any crowd. So why not give it a try? You won't regret it!

what is cynar

Exploring the Taste of Cynar

Cynar has a unique flavor profile that has been described as vegetal, earthy, bitter, herbaceous yet sweet. It is derived from Cynarin, an acid found in artichokes and while the artichoke flavor is subtle, it may be detected in the aftertaste. The bitterness of Cynar is balanced with a slight sweetness to create a complex flavor that can be enjoyed neat or with mixers.

Drinking Cynar in the Italian Style

In Italy, Cynar is traditionally enjoyed as an aperitivo, a pre-dinner drink meant to stimulate the appetite. It is typically served on its own or mixed with soda, orange , or tonic. It can also be enjoyed after a meal as a digestivo. Cynar helps settle the stomach and its deep bitterness helps salve the effects of a heavy meal. It is often accompanied by snacks such as olives, nuts or salumi (Italian cured meats).

What Are Other Aperitifs Similar to Cynar?

Cynar is an Italian amaro, or herbal liqueur, made with artichoke leaves, along with oher herbs and spices. It has a distinctively bitter flavor, but is balanced by some sweetness. There are several other amari that have a similar flavor profile to Cynar. Meletti Amaro is a sweet-but-bitter liqueur from the Marche region of Italy, made from over 20 herbs and roots. Amaro Nonino is also from Italy, and has notes of clove, citrus peel and gentian root. Amaro Averna is a Sicilian classic, with strong notes of citrus peel and licorice. All three of these are good substitutes for Cynar in or enjoyed neat.


Cynar is a unique Italian amaro that has a subtle artichoke flavor blended with earthy and herbal botanical notes. It has a silky and sumptuous caramel finish that makes it an ideal choice for an aperitif or digestivo. The complexity of flavors make Cynar an enjoyable option for those who are looking for something different from traditional cocktails. While the artichoke component may sound off-putting, it adds to the drink's overall flavor profile in a subtle and delightful way.

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Thomas Ashford

Thomas Ashford is a highly educated brewer with years of experience in the industry. He has a Bachelor Degree in Chemistry and a Master Degree in Brewing Science. He is also BJCP Certified Beer Judge. Tom has worked hard to become one of the most experienced brewers in the industry. He has experience monitoring brewhouse and cellaring operations, coordinating brewhouse projects, and optimizing brewery operations for maximum efficiency. He is also familiar mixology and an experienced sommelier. Tom is an expert organizer of beer festivals, wine tastings, and brewery tours.