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The best Pisco Sour recipe

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With Peru's National Pisco Sour Day around the corner (July 24), we thought it would be a good idea to share the recipe with you. A sweet yet sharp cocktail made from Pisco and limes.

But before we get to making them, it's worth knowing about Pisco. It is a clear spirit, distilled from grapes, widely consumed and produced in both Chile and Peru. Historically, Pisco has been the matter of heated dispute between the two countries, both of them claiming Pisco is theirs.

To better understand it you need to know these simple facts:

  • Cultivation and production of the Pisco started in Peru.

  • Pisco is a port in Peru from where the drink was first exported.

  • Organisation of Intellectual Property Rights in Geneva recently ruled that Pisco is a Peruvian product.

  • Chile produces, exports and drinks almost 15 times more Pisco than does Peru.

But the debate doesn't stop here, the Pisco Sour was invented by an English sailor in Iquique, a Chilean City which used to be Peruvian until the Pacific War when Chile took it. However, the recipe was greatly improved in Lima (Peru), many years later. And so it goes on...

If you want to keep friends in South America, when a Peruvian asks you who makes the best pisco sour, you say 'Peru!'. When a Chilean asks you, you say, 'Chile!'. If you are in a room with both Peruvians and Chileans then we can't help but we'd love to hear your experiences!

So now that you know the history, here is the recipe:

Ingredients

  • Pure Quebranta Pisco

  • Icing (powdered) sugar

  • Lime (ideally key lime or similarly potent) juice

  • Egg white

  • Ice cubes

  • Angostura Bitters

Preparation

  • In a cocktail shaker mix Pisco and fresh lime juice in a ratio of anywhere between 3:1 and 3:2.

  • Add sugar, usually about a tablespoon.

  • Now add the egg white, lots of ice and shake vigorously.

  • Adjust sweet/sour to suit.

  • Serve in short, stubby glasses with three drops of Angostura Bitters.

The drink should be a delicate green with a slight white foamy head on it. Enjoy in moderation! Pisco sour is traditionally an aperitif. Those in the know, know that whilst easy to drink these little chaps, if you have more than two before dinner you risk not being able to distinguish your knife from your fork.

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The Pothole is Pura Aventura's popular monthly email. We share what we love, what interests us and what we find challenging. And we don't Photoshop out the bits everyone else does. We like to think our considered opinions provide food for thought, and will sometimes put a smile on your face. They've even been known to make people cry. You can click here to subscribe and, naturally, unsubscribe at any time.

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