Sunday, November 8, 2009

pisco sours

I recently went on a trip to Chile to visit a very good friend of mine, Melissa. While there, one of our favorite pastimes was to sample as many pisco sours as possible. I quickly learned to love pisco (and let's face it - it really wasn't that hard).

Here's a picture of me enjoying my very first pisco sour in Santiago.  Can you see the lightbulb going off?  Can you see the pleasure centre in my brain saying "Wooo hoooooo!  These are TASTY!"

Needless to say this was the first of many.  

In Chile, pisco is a hugely popular drink made from grapes (Chile and Peru are apparently battling over the distinction of labeling it their national drink).  

I managed to return with two bottles of pisco (Canadian customs only allows you one bottle of hard liquor but somehow I ended up with two bottles in my luggage - oopsie!).  Both bottles arrived unscathed, but once I returned to Canada I was on the hunt for a local source.  Concern was high... I mean, I've grown terribly accustomed to this beverage and Chile wasn't exactly a country I was just going to jaunt off to when the inclination hit me... Fortunately after checking out two other liquor stores, three times was indeed a charm and I hit paydirt.  Pisco!  Granted, the bottle had a layer of dust on it, but that's on the outside so who cares!  It's available in Canada and now I have an endless supply for pisco sours, and their tasty relative, the piscola.

Muy muy rico!!! 

These were the best pisco sours on my trip at a place we stopped for lunch in Puerto Montt.


Here's the recipe:

Chilean Pisco Sour

3 parts pisco
1 part freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon superfine sugar (like berry sugar)
1 tablespoon egg whites

Mix together in a cocktail shaker.

(I also rim the glasses with sugar too)

I do like to use egg whites, but I use "Simply Egg White" as in my mind it's safer than using just regular egg white and it's better than breaking open an egg and having a yolk to use up. I find the addition of egg whites makes for a creamer and richer pisco sour.

Here's a picture of me with an expert pisco sour maker at the Hotel Termas Puyehue who gave Melissa and me a lesson in the fine art of pisco sour making:

Another simple, yet tasty drink that I highly recommend is the piscola.


Get a large glass, put 2 to 3 ice cubes in it.
Add pisco to about 1/3 of the glass.

Fill the remainder of the glass with Coca-Cola.

It's also tasty with a bit of lemon.

I will always have great memories of hanging out in Chile and enjoying pisco (sours and piscolas) with my wonderful friend Melissa... Thanks Melissa!  

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