Myth #2: The 3-1-1 recipe is the best for pisco sour
This is the 2nd post of a series of mythbusters to clarify misconceptions about Peruvian pisco.
We think the best recipe for the pisco sour is: 2 oz. Peruvian pisco + 1 oz. lime juice + 1/2 oz. simple syrup
Many people claim that the traditional 3-1-1 recipe (3 oz. pisco + 1 oz. simple syrup + 1 oz. lime juice) is the best for the pisco sour. However, we believe less booze is better for the most classic Peruvian cocktail.
When consulted about the 3-1-1 recipe, our favorite award-winning bartender Kami said: “3 ounces of pisco is too much booze. I like to use only 2 ounces of pisco in my sours”. The alcohol in a cocktail serves to provide a nice buzz, but it’s most enjoyed when it pairs well with the flavors of your drink. In the case of a pisco sour, you want the pisco to be in harmony with the sweetness of the simple syrup and the acidity of the limes, not overpower them.
Kami elaborated on the subject further, saying “you also need to take in account your location and the origin of your ingredients when making cocktails. Peruvian limes are very acidic, so in Peru, I use the 2-1-1 recipe. In the USA or Canada, the regular lime isn’t as pungent, so I use 1 ounce of lime juice and 1/2 oz of simple syrup, creating a 2:1 ratio of sour to sweet”.
One must also consider the alcohol content of a cocktail to drink responsibly. A cocktail with 3 shots of liquor will put a woman of average weight at or above .08 percent of blood alcohol concentration (the legal limit to drive in Washington State and Canada). The sugar and lime will mask the high level of alcohol, so you may not realize just how much you are consuming as you enjoy the smooth, delicious cocktail. Why not enjoy your pisco sour with less booze to slow down the pace of drinking? It is safer and better for your health.
On that safety note, here is Kami’s classic pisco sour recipe, to be adjusted according to your geographical location:
2 oz PiscoLogía Pisco
1/2 oz simple syrup
1 oz fresh lime juice
1 egg white