pisco cocktails Archives • Piscologia
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Mai Nikkei Tai, Peruvian Mai Tai

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The influx of Japanese immigrants to Peru at the end of the 19th century greatly enhanced Peruvian cuisine through the development of Nikkei, the fusion of Peruvian and Japanese food. New ingredients such as ginger, soy, wasabi and raw fish and seafood slowly assimilated into Peruvian cuisine, eventually creating delectable dishes such as tiradito, pulpo al olivo and acevichado sushi.

In her Mai Nikkei Tai, Kami twisted the traditional Mai Tai recipe to nod to this culinary movement. A touch of ginger represents the Nikkei and Quebranta pisco replaces rum, embodying a truly Peruvian cocktail. The result is a delicious blend of Japanese and Peruvian flavors.

Mai Nikkei Tai 

  • 2 oz Pisco Quebranta 
  • .5 oz Fino sherry 
  • .25 oz Sesame Orgeat 
  • .25 oz (strong brewed) ginger syrup
  • .75 oz fresh lime juice 

Shake & strain over ice

Garnish with mint bouquet, lime & seasonal fruit 

Source:

Walhout, Hannah. “How Japanese Immigrants Shaped Peruvian Food.” Food & Wine, 17 Apr. 2019, www.foodandwine.com/chefs/nikkei-peruvian-japanese-food.

Capitán Cocktail, the Peruvian Manhattan

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Today we present to you another classic Peruvian cocktail, the Capitán. Also known as the “Manhattan Peruano”, this mix of vermouth and pisco represents the fusion of Peruvian and Italian cultures in Peru.

According to “¡Que pase el Capitán!”, vermouth was first imported to Peru from Italy in the year 1859. However, its popularity peaked after WW1 when Italian immigrants in Lima started consuming the botanical fortified wine with Peruvian pisco. The economical cocktail was named after its price, “20 centavos” (20 cents).  

When the 20 centavos’ popularity spread beyond the circles of Italian immigrants, its name evolved to Capitán. High in the Andes of Peru in the city of Puno, military captains used to stop in bars during their nightly patrols on horseback and order the 20 centavos cocktail. The bartenders would pass the drink to their uniformed customers saying, “For you, my Captain” (“Capitán” in Spanish). The name “Capitán” soon caught on and has been a part of Peruvian cocktail culture ever since.

Now you can now ponder that bit of history while savoring Kami’s version of the Capitán with PiscoLogía Pisco Acholado and sweet & dry vermouth.

Capitán Perfecto 

  • 2 oz Pisco Acholado 
  • 1/2 oz. Dry Vermouth 
  • 1/2 oz. Sweet Vermouth 
  • Nori Wrapped Kalamata Olive 

Stirred, served up 

Source:

Santa Cruz, John. “¡Qué Pase El Capitán! Crónicas Desde Perú .” Gastronomía Alternativa, www.gastronomiaalternativa.com/ga-23_19-que-pase-el-capitan.html.

Toast to Peru’s national hero with a tasty Peruvian pisco cocktail!

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In Peru, it is difficult not to stumble upon something associated with José de San Martín. From streets to provinces to statues to schools, this man’s legacy is ubiquitous. Born in Argentina, José de San Martín was a military leader who fought to liberate Argentina, Chile and Peru. However, he was notable not only for his efforts to gain independence in South America. San Martín also fought to abolish slavery, advocated for indigenous people and enacted freedom of speech in Peru.

 

José de San Martín first liberated Argentina and Chile from royalist rule. He then traveled to Peru to do the same. His efforts were successful; Peru’s independence was declared on July 28th, 1821. To this day, Peruvians celebrate Independence Day with copious amounts of pisco. Now they can add PiscoLogía’s San Martín cocktail to their repertoire.

 

Peru’s national hero died in France at the age of 72, shortly after hearing the news of Argentina’s victory against the Anglo-French blockade. To note this historical fact, Kami added a French twist to this cocktail with Chartreuse and Dubbonet.

 

Created by the master Kami Kenna, we present the San Martín cocktail to you:

 

 

San Martín, Protector of Peru 

 

2 oz Pisco Acholado

1 oz Dubonnet

Bar Spoon of Yellow Chartreuse

Garnish with grapefruit peel

Shaken, served up

 

 

 

 

 

Pairing your favorite Peruvian food with PiscoLogía

Peruvian pisco is an unaged wine that is distilled one time. We believe single distillation brings out the characteristics of each grape varietal, whereas a double or triple distillation might mask important flavors and aromas.

 

Because Peruvian pisco is a derivative of wine and it is so aromatic and flavorful, it pairs especially well with food. In this post, we have chosen some of our favorite Peruvian dishes and combined them with signature PiscoLogía cocktails to create a perfect harmony of food and drink. The next time you eat Peruvian cuisine, use this as a guide to enhance your culinary experience. For details about each cocktail recipe, please visit: http://piscologia.com/drink-recipes/.

 

 

 

Picarones Doughnuts made from squash and sweet potato. Served with chancaca (molasses) syrup.

 

Pair with: PiscoLogía Quebranta in a snifter

Paring notes: In this combination, the aromas of caramelized banana of our Quebranta pisco accentuate the sweetness of the molasses syrup.

 

 

 

 

Turrón Doña Pepa This dessert consists of chancaca syrup slathered between buttery layers of anise cookies. It is topped with generous amounts of sprinkles.

 

Pair with: Clover Club Peruano

Pairing notes: The raspberry undertones of this cocktail complement the fruity chancaca syrup and the sweet, crumbly cookies.

 

 

 

 

Choros a la chalaca Mussels stuffed with spicy peppers, onions, corn and tomato.

 

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Pair with: Piña Asada Fix

Pairing notes: The combination of sweet and tart in this cocktail cut through the intense flavors of the onion and spicy pepper chalaca salsa.

 

 

 

Rocoto relleno- Spicy pepper (rocoto) stuffed with meat, potatoes and vegetables. It is topped with cheese and baked. Usually served with scalloped potatoes.

 

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Pair with: Pisco Punch

Pairing notes: This limey/pineapple punch is refreshing but hardy, matching the robust flavors of the meat and cheese in this dish.

 

 

 

Ceviche- A seafood dish typically made from fresh raw fish cured in lime juice and spiced with chili peppers, chopped onions, salt, and cilantro.

 

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Pair with: Chilcano

Pairing notes: We think Peru’s most iconic dish should accompany Peru’s most iconic cocktail. The gingery acidic flavor of this cocktail pair beautifully with this spicy citrus dish.

 

 

 

Lomo saltado- A fusion of Peruvian/Chinese food. This stir fry dish combines sirloin, spicy peppers, onions, tomatoes and soy sauce.

 

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Pair with: No Tea, No Shade

Pairing notes: The tannins from the tea and bitterness of the Aperol pair well with the sweet, spicy, savory flavors of this meaty dish.

 

 

 

Ají de gallina– A creamy, spicy chicken dish. Ají de gallina is similar to Thai curry, but the Peruvian version uses evaporated milk instead of coconut milk and ají amarillo peppers instead of curry paste.

 

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Pair with: Pisco sour

Pairing notes: Another quintessential Peruvian dish that is best paired with a truly “Peruvian” cocktail. This creamy dish needs some acidity from the lime juice to create balance, while the foamy egg-white layer matches the velvety texture of the pepper sauce.

 

 

Peruvian Pisco in Spokane

Peruvian pisco, Meg McFarland, Kami Kenna, Peruvian pisco, boutique distillery peru, Piscologia

 

We would like to thank all the pisco enthusiasts in Spokane who have supported us after reading the recent article about our partners in the Spokesman Review. In her article “Spokane pair are partners in women-run, boutique Peruvian distillery PiscoLogia”,  Adriana Janovich tells the story of how Meg McFarland, Kami Kenna, and Nati Gordillo formed the partnership that now successfully operates our company, Topa Spirits, LLC. Many from the Spokane and Northern Idaho region have contacted us to find out where PiscoLogía is available. To read the article, please visit: http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2019/jan/22/spokane-pair-are-partners-in-women-run-boutique-pe/?fbclid=IwAR3EAmbT6IPqVbX8TaF1ZcXnEosXTfOpEKjg4NPH-f89e2UxHWYhyJAICD8

 

Here are some options to buy our Peruvian pisco in the Inland Northwest:

 

Spokane area:

 

My Fresh Basket

Kendall Yards

1030 W Summit Pkwy

Spokane, WA 99201

Ph: 509-558-2100

 

Millwood Grocery and Spirits

3409 N Argonne Rd

Millwood, WA 99212

Ph: 509-926-0380

 

Bulldog Liquor & Wine

1101 N Division St

Spokane, WA 99202

Ph: 509-315-9098

 

 

Other areas in Washington State:

PiscoLogía is distributed by American Northwest Import and Distribution in Washington State. To see where to purchase our Peruvian pisco in Washington, please contact them directly: http://www.anwdistributors.com/

 

Idaho:

Liquor distribution is controlled by the State of Idaho. Please check your local liquor store to see if PiscoLogía is available. If you can’t find it on the shelves, you can request that it be special ordered. For more information, please visit:

 

Idaho State Liquor Division

 

The (not-so) New Kids on the Block: Pisco and Mezcal

There are many parallels between the histories and cultures of Peru and Mexico, the crowns of the New World. Before the arrival of the Spanish, the Incas, Aztecs and Mayas had exceptionally advanced cultures. They were sophisticated astrologers, mathematicians, engineers and culinary experts. Today, Peru and Mexico not only share the Spanish language (and have many unique indigenous languages), but they both have immense pride in their national spirits, Pisco and Mezcal.

 

Fascinated by this socio-historical connection, our partner Kami Kenna loves combining Pisco and Mezcal in creative cocktails. We have highlighted one of her masterful creations, “The Meeting of the Minds” and the methodology behind it.

 

Kami: “When I think of Mezcal, the words ‘rustic, authentic, wild, alive, proud, terroir, historic’ come to mind. I associate words such as, ‘rustic, strict tradition, elegant, expressive, proud, terroir, historic’ with Pisco. I like to consider these concepts when creating combinations with both liquors. The flavors fit into this narrative and I play with proportions of the drink until they fill their starring roles.

 

When creating a cocktail, I like to pick a theme to help narrow my thoughts. If I incorporate a second base spirit, it’s important for me to understand their flavors individually and then together. I ask myself what other flavors can I combine to add interest and to highlight them.

 

In this case, I had a French 75 on my mind, so for sparkle, I grabbed a bottle of Txakolina – a delicious Basque wine. For this cocktail, I used the ‘rosado’ version, which worked perfectly as a topper and added the effervescent texture required for a French 75 style drink. It’s no secret that pineapple, lime and pisco make a dreamy Pisco Punch. For this cocktail, I decided to use a caramelized pineapple gomme syrup with clove and cardamom to add depth to hold up to the mezcal, a sweet and creamy Espadín with hints of mesquite from the roasting process. I was ecstatic with the final result, a cocktail I named “Meeting of the Minds”. I hope you enjoy this cocktail as much as I do!

 

Meeting of the Minds 

 

PiscoLogia Acholado-1 oz 

Mezcal Tosba- 1 oz 

Caramelised Pineapple Syrup- 1 oz

Fresh lime juice-1 oz 

Txakolina Rosado -1 oz 

 

Shake all ingredients together, top with Txakolina Rosado. Serve up. ¡Salud!

 

Peruvian Pisco Grapes: Acholado vs. Quebranta

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To understand the difference between Acholado and Quebranta, one must first understand what Peruvian pisco is. Peruvian pisco is a clear brandy made from 100% grapes. That means it is a fine wine that is distilled once and then aged in neutral casks.

Quebranta is a grape variety used to make Peruvian pisco, just like Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay are types of wine grapes. In Peru, there are 8 grapes used in pisco production: Quebranta, Negra Criolla, Mollar, Uvina (non-aromatic) and Italia, Torontel, Moscatel, and Albilla (aromatic). In Spanish, a pisco made with a single variety of grape is called “pisco puro”.

Acholado means “blend”. If a pisco is an Acholado, it is made from either a blend of two or more types of grapes or from a blend of single variety piscos. Nati, our master distiller, mixes a perfect concoction of Quebranta and Italia grapes to create our PiscoLogía Acholado.

Here is a comparison of Acholado and Quebranta:

PiscoLogía Acholado:

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Flavors: Matured dried currant & bananas

Aromas: Pecan and orange blossom

Pair with: Semi-sweet chocolate

Cocktail suggestion: “Eggs Benedictine”

  • 2 oz. PiscoLogía Acholado
  • 1 oz. Pineapple Syrup
  • 1 oz. Lime
  • .5 oz Benedictine
  • Egg white
  • Fresh grated nutmeg (garnish)

Serve on the rocks

PiscoLogía Quebranta:

Aromas: Grassy, herbal, carmelized banana

Flavors: Toasted almonds, pecans, tart green apples

Pair with: Camembert and apples

Cocktail suggestion: “Grape on Grape on Grape”

  • 2 oz. PiscoLogía Quebranta
  • .5 oz. Manzanilla Sherry
  • .5 oz Punte E Mes Sweet Vermouth

Serve Neat