NI’s 2017 Dining Awards: The Sips
Best Craft Cocktail: The Stanchez, Bar Tulia
Chef Vincenzo Betulia has a penchant for amaro, a sweet herbal Italian liqueur often sipped as an after-dinner digestif. In this craft cocktail, he mixes two brands of amaro with Milagro tequila, peach nectar for added fruitiness, and for a pinch of fire, habanero syrup.
Honorable mention: My Blueberry Buck, The Continental
Take a shot of blueberry-sage–infused Banyan Reserve vodka, pour in ginger beer, and give it a squeeze of lime, and there you have The Continental’s take on the Moscow Mule.
Best Coffee: Bad Ass Coffee Company
Direct from the Big Island of Hawaii, the Kona coffee that Bad Ass Coffee Company brews goes into such specialties as Eye Opener Espresso, Bad Ass Mocha, Grasshopper Latte, and Caramel Kreme de Kona. One of the world’s most sought-after coffees, Kona beans are shipped green to Florida for fresh roasting.
Honorable mention: Kunjani Craft Coffee & Gallery
From a mother-daughter team who relocated to Naples from Zimbabwe, Kunjani serves African-inspired organic coffee amid African and local art.
Best Wine List: Bleu Provence
Only one of two restaurants in Florida and 88 in the world to have won Wine Spectator’s Grand Award (2015 and 2016), Bleu Provence boasts more than 30,000 bottles of more than 3,000 different wines from around the world in its cave. It also operates the adjacent Bleu Cellar retail store.
Honorable mention: The Wine Loft of Naples
Its wine list circles the globe with a few select vintners in each varietal category. These they sell by the bottle, glass, or as part of three-selection flight.