Pisco is the native spirit of Peru and Chile. It is made from grapes, so can be considered a Brandy. It is usually, but not always, a clear (un-aged) spirit.
We will learn all about it with Kappa Pisco Brand Ambasador Anne-Louise Marquis. We spoke to Anne-Louise in episode #121 about Grand Marnier.
Cocktail of the week is Pisco sour. I followed the recipe on kappapisco.com:
2 oz Kappa Pisco
1 oz Fresh Lemon Juice
1 oz Simple Syrup, (I used 3/4 oz)
1 Egg White
Shake vigorously with ice
Strain into a chilled coup glass (or they suggest a champagne flute).
Top with a few drops of Angostura bitters for decoration (and taste).
We explore the subject of Egg Whites in Cocktails in more detail below.
Book of the Week: Food & Wine Cocktails - 2015 Edition. This is a great book that comes out every year from the editors of Food & Wine Magazine. They collect cocktail recipes from top bartenders all around the U.S. and mix in some classics as well. There are great innovative recipes in this book and beautiful photos. It will be a great addition to your cocktail book collection or a great gift! (Buy Now on Amazon).
Information about drinks with egg whites:
A lot of people will dry shake drinks with egg whites, (that is shake without ice), then add ice to the shaker and shake again. When dry shaking, I have found that sometimes your 2 piece shaker doesn’t make a good seal, I’m guessing it because the tin doesn’t contract a little like it does when its ice cold,
The reason for adding egg white to your drink is to get a nice frothy "head" or foam on it. It also adds a nice "silky" quality to the drink.
I usually double stain shaken drinks that will be served “Up” to get rid of any tiny ice particles that are in the tin after shaking and would get right through the Harthorn shaker. This is not recommended with drinks with egg whites however, because the foamy “head” you worked so hard for will be reduced significantly when it is poured through the fine strainer.
Egg whites will add very little in the way of flavor to your drink. The purpose of adding then is for texture and foam.
Of course we should probably talk about food safety for a minute. You want the freshest eggs you can get. Best if you can get them at a local farm or farmers market. Just to be extra safe with eggs from a farm, you might want to give them an extra rinse in cold water. The outsides (shells) wont be sterilized the same way as commercial eggs in most cases.
Some guests may be wary or having raw eggs in their cocktail, but do not try to hide it because of course some people are allergic to eggs!
It is possible to buy pasteurized eggs - something to consider.
Pasteurized Liquid egg whites are also available pre-packaged. Certainly more convenient. I've never used them, so I can't offer an opinion how these will work as opposed to fresh eggs, however it does seem more artificial somehow.
In a bar setting, the ideal way to prepare egg whites is to separate them ahead of time and store your egg whites is in a squeeze bottle, (see video below for a great way to separate eggs)
Keep your prepared egg whites in a cooler or ice bath, not under the bar somewhere at room temperature! Make sure you don't have an egg shells in your drink. Jeffrey Morgenthaler suggests in his book to crack them one at a time into a bowl, examine for egg shells and then transfer to the squeeze bottle or other vessel. If you have Jeffrey Morgenthaler’s The Bar Book, consider reading that section again. If you don't have this book, I highly recommend it: BUY IT NOW!! Jeffrey was a guest on this very podcast back in episode #113.
In one article that Jeffrey Morgenthaler wrote about drinks with eggs in them, he very casually says in the recipe "one egg white - beaten". Beat the egg white a bit BEFORE adding any other ingredients, then add all the other ingredients, including the ice - no dry shake.
As an aside, in that Jeffrey Morgenthaler article he makes a cocktail called the Kentucky Breakfast which looks excellent.
In Jeffrey Morgenthaler's Book - The Bar Book he does not mention beating the eggs first but does dry shake...and he explains the reason for the dry shake. I must admit that I was never convinced about the dry shake, but finally now I get it. Jeffrey explains the reason you dry shake is not that anything magical happens when you shake without ice, its just that you can shake longer without over diluting the drink.
Some people like to add the spring from their Harthorn strainer into the shaker while dry shaking, which acts like an egg beater. This does seem to help, although makes a bit of a mess and then the spring needs to be put back on the strainer. A good alternative is the little spring ball that comes with some shaker bottles made for making protein shakes.
On the other hand, I have read a least one article that states that eggs will emulsify better at warmer temperatures.
Kellie Thorn, beverage director for Hugh Acheson and bar manager at Atlanta's Empire State South even adds olive oil before dry shaking in her Fall Sour recipe, which is very similar to the way some salad dressings are emulsified. See the video below of Kellie making the Fall Sour.
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