Oh, it feels so good to stretch out the ol’ typin’ fingers and get back into the blogosphere. It’s been a busy few months here at TraderTiki headquarters, with the new syrups line, Tiki Nights at Teardrop Lounge in Portland and Vessel in Seattle, and a new job at… well, we can talk about all that later. For now, let’s get down to the nitty gritty with a lovely bowl of punch.
Fred over at Cocktail Virgin Slut will be hosting this iteration of the long running Mixology Monday, with this iteration featuring Tea! Tea is an ingredient I’ve long… well, for a few years at least, been ballyhooing as a wonderful ingredient. I first had a tippler’s tea in Pequod Punch, a drink from Jeff Berry’s Intoxica. The drink was so well received by me that… well, I received perhaps a bit too much. The tea and rum combination, so smooth and subtle, inspired my Veilleés Punch, and a few other ephemeral cocktails.
While in New York last year, I was treated to a great delight in the form of a simple Arrack punch using sugar, lime, Batavia Arrack, water, and just a sprinkle of nutmeg. Arrack’s unique flavor punches through the combination of citrus and sugar, and even watered down it still packs quite the whallop of taste. I thought I’d take this as inspiration to make a simple Arrack and Tea punch I like to call VOC Batavia Punch, named for the cursed ship Batavia of the Dutch East India Company, which suffered a mutiny, shipwreck, and several murders on its maiden voyage. Was this punch to blame? Who can say, but take a sip and lets find out.
VOC Batavia Punch, for one
- 1/2 tbsp sugar
- zest of 1/2 lemon
In a shaking tin, create an oleo saccharum by using a muddler to grind the sugar against the lemon, which should extract the oil. Muddle/Grind and leave for 2 minutes, to allow absorption.
In the same shaking tin, pour in
- 1 1/2 oz Batavia Arrack
- 3/4 oz Bols Genever
- 3/4 oz fresh lime juice
- 2 1/4 oz Strong Black Tea (cold)
Shake with plenty of cubed ice and pour into a 15oz glass. Garnish with a splash of nutmeg and lemon wheel, serve with straws.
For a punchbowl, use 1 Tbsp sugar per the zest of 1 lemon, 1 whole lemon zest per 2 drinks. Combine 2 parts Batavia Arrack, 1 parts Bols Genever, 1 part fresh lime juice, 3 parts Black tea, over a block of ice that is at least 1/2 the final volume of the the punch.
Like any good punch, this one goes down smooth and gets one stinkin’ real quick-like. The Arrack and Genever combo creates a striking flavor, something I can only describe as a rich funk. This is calmed by the smooth, oily tea, and balanced with the lime and sugar. Beware though, a cup full too many and you may find yourself shipwrecked, and like the poor botswain of the VOC Batavia, executed for “outrageous behavior”.