There are tonnes of things to fall in love with from the moment you set foot in Peru to the minute you leave, not least the Pisco Sour.
Both Chile and Peru claim the classic cocktail as their national drink, and we’re yet to decide which country does it better (or if there’s any real difference at all). But we can say for certain that sipping on a Pisco Sour back in Cusco after several days hiking to one of the world’s most monumental sites feels pretty damn good.
Where did the Pisco Sour come from?
The cocktail’s origins are just as foggy as its texture, but we’ve heard tales of its creation in the popular old wood-panelled Morris Bar in Lima some time around the start of the 20th century.
But the Grappa-like Pisco brandy that puts an earthy undertone in the cocktail has been around in Peru much longer than that. Apparently it appeared back when the Spanish conquistadores arrived to take over Peru in the middle of the 1500s, bringing grapes from the Canary Islands so they could still get their wine fix (who wouldn’t?!).
The leftover grapes from those initial batches were distilled to create the drink that was to become the pride of Peru. The result? A delicious and dangerously strong brandy that turned out to be the perfect ingredient for a solid alternative to the classic Whisky Sour.
We say “dangerously strong” and we mean it. It’s illegal for producers to add water for dilution, so the alcohol content is always between 38-48%. Remember that as you tuck into your third glass (if you can).
How do you make the perfect Pisco Sour?
The flavours are complex, but thankfully the recipe isn’t.
Pisco Sour Recipe
The cocktail should be foamy, sweet and sour in equal measures. In a glassful of ingredients that sound so wrong on paper but which taste so right on your lips. Speaking of ingredients, these are the ones you need…
- Three parts Pisco
- One part sugar syrup
- One part fresh lime juice
- One part egg whites
- A dash of Angostura Bitters
- Crushed ice
- Cocktail shaker
- A blender
Yes, we did say blender, the real secret ingredient to any great cocktail. And now that you’ve got your head around that, here’s what you do.
1. Start by popping your syrup, lime juice and Pisco in your blender with the ice and whizz it up.
2. Then pour your mix into a cocktail shaker and add the egg whites. Give it all a good old shake until you’ve created a decent froth.
3. Serve in glasses, slip a dash of Angostura Bitters in the middle of the foamy top and get your lips on that.
Vegan Pisco Sour
If you want to enjoy a Pisco Sour and lose the egg whites, what’s the alternative? AQUAFABA
Aquafaba is the liquid from a can of chickpeas. When whipped, aquafaba turns into a fluffy, light mixture (just like egg whites!) so it’s fantastic as a substitute. Plus, it doesn’t really taste like anything.
So there we have it, a simple way to enjoy a Pisco Sour without the egg white!
If you would like to visit Peru why not check out all of our Peru Trips.
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