Libation Heaven

Perricone’s is known for its classic Italian food and its welcoming ambiance, but if you’ve neglected the cocktail menu here, then you owe them another visit.
Text by Eric Nathal Photos by Chris Bejarano | June 9, 2018 | People

It was 1996 and Peruvian native Katherine Nava decided to hop on a plane and come see what Miami was all about. “I first arrived to study but I fell in love with the city and decided to call it home,” she says. Today, she’s one of the most popular happy hour bartenders at Perricone’s — and she loves every second of it. “You never know who you’re serving and I love that I get to meet so many interesting people every day,” she says.
Nava, faired-skinned and light-haired, often gets mistaken for Eastern European. “I think I must look Russian because people come up to me all the time and just start speaking to me in Russian,” she says. “When I tell them that I’m Peruvian they don’t believe me!”
So with such a worldly mix in her repertoire, what’s her favorite drink to make? “It changes all the time but I just came up with a passion fruit margarita and everyone loves it,” she says. “It’s refreshing and perfect for any occasion.” It’s also very easy to make at home and you don’t need too many ingredients. Just pour some Jose Cuervo SIlver over a glass with ice, add a bit of fresh lime juice, some passion fruit puree and shake. “After that, all you have to do is add a splash of sour mix and the result is guaranteed to be delicious,” she says.
Surprisingly, Nava’s main pet peeves include a very specific type of music and a very popular drink! “Although I’m Latina, I’m not a fan of salsa music,” she says. “I’m also not a fan of making bloody marys, I don’t know why, maybe it’s because I don’t like tomato juice — but the funny thing is that my customers love the way I make them…some have said the best in town!”
If you want to enjoy a quiet evening at Perricone’s, she recommends going there on Monday or Wednesdays. “It’s still busy during those days but it’s a bit quieter and you really get to enjoy what we’re all about.”

Passion Fruit Margarita
2 oz. Jose Cuervo Silver
4 oz. Passion Fruit Puree
Splash of Lime
Splash of Sour Mix