Since we did Meyer Lemon cocktails last week, let’s make this a weekly thing. This weekend, we will be drinking Ti Punch.
One of the themes of the blog is cooking and entertaining at home. And nothing entertains (or ends the work week) like a cocktail. And right now there is a lot of fantastic and inspiring (and perhaps, overwrought) mixlogy out there. But let’s face it, much of the best mixology these days is not easy to do at home. That does not mean we cannot drink great cocktails, we just need to focus on drinks that use ingredients we actually can find and don’t break the bank. The easiest way to make great cocktails at home is to use fresh juices. Last week it was Meyer Lemons. This week it is limes. And Ti’ Punch shows just how much you can do with a fresh ingredient and a good recipe.
Ti’ Punch is a very old cocktail that originates from the Caribbean and traditionally combines Rhum Agricole, Limes and a sugar syrup. Rhum Agricole is from Martinique and is made from cane sugar, rather than Molasses. It tends to run hot (about 100 proof) and has more light and “grassy” flavors than molasses-based rum. That may not sound great, but Rhum Agricole is a good rum for cocktails and worth a try. A decent bottle will cost about 30 bucks. But if you have decent white rum or Cachaca, that will also work. As for the sugar, you can use simple syrup, but if you have Cane Syrup, you will get a deeper flavor. Neither better or worse, just different. If you like to geek up on these things, try the Ti’ Punch with simple syrup, a simple syrup using demerara sugar and then cane syrup. They will look and taste quite different. Finally, you will need fresh lime juice. That is the one solid requirement.
The drink itself is very good, as you would expect from any rum, sugar, lime cocktail. I mean, how bad can it be? But this drink will actually improve over time in the glass as the ice melts. It also has a great aroma, you can linger over this drink and enjoy the subtle change over time. If you have a friend who prefers wine to cocktails, have them try this. They may enjoy the experience more than they would expect.
Some of the best mixologists in New York and San Francisco feature this drink for a reason, it is a well developed cocktail. And something you can make at home. Try it out.
Notes Before You Start:
– Cane syrup can be found at most supermarkets (look near the molasses)
– We suggest proportions, but they are up to you. In the Caribbean, when Ti’ Punch is served, it is often served so the guest can mix their own (in Martinique this is called “preparing your own death”, but in a good way..;-).
– The drink improves as the ice melts, large chunks of ice will improve the drink.
What you get: A very tasty, but refined cocktail. This is a classic you should have in your cocktail toolkit.
What you need: No special equipment required. It is good to have Rhum Agricole, which you should find in most liquor stores. Otherwise use good white rum or cachaca.
How Long? 5-10 minutes, max. The only time commitment is juicing the limes and making simple syrup (if using).
– 2 oz. Rhum Agricole
– 1 oz. cane syrup or simple syrup
– 1 oz. freshly squeezed lime juice
1. Combine rum, syrup and juice in a cocktail shaker or glass. Stir to combine.
2. Pour rum mixture into a large glass. Gently add ice.
3. Garnish with lime peel, if you like.