While I had a few ideas floating through my head, when I read some of the suggestions which included "semi-solid shots [and] jiggling jellies," I knew which recipe I should try. Instead of going the route of modern molecular mixology, I would go the relatively ancient way. That being a recipe proffered by William Schmidt in his 1892 book The Flowing Bowl. In that tome of wonder is a semi-solid presentation of Batavia Arrack called Arrack Foam. William's directions were:
Arrack Foam: Mix one quart of sour cream with half a pint of arrack, and four ounces of lump-sugar; beat to foam, and serve it in glasses.In parsing the recipe, luckily I had advice from bartenders John Gertsen and Will Thompson of Drink. When they made this at the behest of the Dude Kicker kids, they opted for crème fraîche for the sour cream. They also chose to foam up the drink using a nitrous charger. While I kept the crème fraîche idea, I opted for a cobbler shaker and a balled up Hawthorne strainer spring for the foaming. Moreover, I decided to scale back eight fold to make two servings especially since crème fraîche is quite rich:
• 4 oz Crème FraîcheFor a garnish (despite one not being listed by William), I went with borage, bee balm, and nasturtium flowers which are all edible (the nasturium flowers were garnishing the glass, not the foam).
• 1 oz Batavia Arrack
• 1/2 oz Sugar
Stir the crème fraîche and sugar in a shaker until the sugar is incorporated. Add Batavia Arrack and a balled up Hawthorne strainer spring, shake vigorously, and spoon into chilled cups or glasses. Garnish lavishly with flowers or berries of the season, and serve with a small spoon.
So cheers to 12 Bottle Bar for hosting this month's Mixology Monday (even if Batavia Arrack is not on their bottle list) and to Paul Clarke for letting someone dare us to incorporate echolocation into our recipes!