Mixing with Minty: Sunday Funday




Recently I got together with Jenn Wong from Way of the Wong to make drinks on a Sunday Funday. Often you see us bopping around LA trying all the drinks at all the bars but we decided to test our own bartending skills. After all, I can claim experience from classes and well, being very familiar with bar stools.

I brought over a few different new spirits and liqueurs I picked up to play with. We love the Giffard line of liqueurs and I’m super excited to own the Banane du Brasil. This was the first Giffard liqueur I tried and although resistant at first, I fell in love with its deep rich flavor. It reminded reminded me of really good ice cream. And in fact, I would try a little spooned over a simple scoop or two for dessert one day.

In the meantime, we opened up Bar Notes, an app to find out what to do with it. We came across a drink from Shawn over at Blackbird in San Francisco. I’ve been to this bar and was impressed by the speed of the bartenders and quality drinks. It may not necessarily scream craft cocktail bar to you but is in fact a neighborhood bar that so happens to serve good drinks.

Kokomo by Shawn Vergara of Blackbird, San Francisco

  • 1.5 oz El Dorado 3-Year rum
  • .5 oz Giffard Banane du Brasil
  • 1.5 oz coconut water
  • 1 oz orgeat
  • .5 oz lime juice
  • nutmeg

Shake all ingredients and strain into a hurricane type glass, top with crushed ice, garnish with lime and nutmeg. We made some adjustments since we didn’t have the specified rum so we went with Flor de Cana. I would have liked to have tried a different orgeat but the one from Trader Vic’s works. We opted to use a tulip glass meant for beer. It worked out well and it turned out be very refreshing.


Hotel Nacional

Hotel Nacional


Hotel Nacional

  • 1.5 oz white rum
  • .75 oz pineapple juice
  • .5 oz lime juice
  • tablespoon of cane sugar (or .5 oz of cane sugar syrup)
  • barspoon of apricot eau de vie
  • Angostura bitters


Shake all ingredients and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with lime wheel (we decided to give you a lime nipple instead).

I also have the Giffard Abricot du Roussillon liqueur and though it’s not quite apricot eau de vie (brandy), I decided to try it in a Hotel Nacional. It ended up too sweet so I would skip the cane sugar syrup next time. And maybe up the lime juice a smidge. Also maybe an additional dash of bitters could have helped as well.


La Conferenca

La Conferencia


Next we tried to figure out what to do with the aguardiente I have from Ecuador. When I first tasted the Zhumir Aguardiente, it really reminded me of a grassy rhum agricole. And later cachaca. I found out this is in fact sugar cane based so that’s why it felt really familiar. Aguardientes can be made from either fruit or grains but it seems many are sugar cane based.

With that in mind, we decided to pursue a recipe featuring rhum agricole. While flipping through the PDT book, we came up with Phil Ward’s La Conferencia.

La Conferencia by Phil Ward, from the PDT book

  • .5 oz El Tesoro reposado tequila
  • .5 oz Del Maguey Vida mezcal
  • .5 oz La Favorite rhum agricole blanc
  • .5 oz Santa Teresa rum
  • .5 oz sugar cane syrup
  • Angostura bitters
  • Bittermens Xocolatl mole bitters
  • Orange twist


Subbing out the El Tersoro for Don Julio reposado and the rhum agricole for the Zhumir, we set to work stirring this drink. Strain into a double rocks glass over a big rock. We decided to go with a lemon twist instead of orange just for the color contrast (and also because I prefer lemon over orange generally in brown, stirred drinks). I also brought over Arizona Bitters Lab’s Mas Mole bitters. These were great and I also love AZ Bitters’ Orange Sunshine and Figgy Pudding.

Do you have suggestions for Giffard liqeurs and this Zhumir? Shoot me a comment below.

© The Minty // LA Cocktails  2015


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