Monday, March 19, 2012

okolehao punch

1 1/2 oz Gin (Beefeater)
1 1/2 oz Coconut Milk
3/4 oz Lemon Juice
1 dash Curaçao (1/4 oz Senior Curaçao)
1 tsp Sugar

Shake with ice and strain into a coconut shell (rocks or highball glass) filled with crushed ice.

Two Wednesdays ago, I decided to make a coconut curry recipe as I needed a few ounces of coconut milk for the Okolehao Punch that appears in Crosby Gaige's Cocktail Guide and Ladies' Companion. The punch recipe was contributed by Charles Rochester, the "Lord of Lexington," who managed the show at the Hotel Lexington's Polynesian-themed room; I provided a little bit of history about the hotel's Hawaiian Room last month in a post about another of their libations which I found in Ted Saucier's Bottom's Up. Given the name, one would expect the drink to be made from the Hawaiian liquor crafted from fermented ti plant root. However, okolehao was often difficult to source and Beachbum Berry recommends Bourbon as the closest readily available flavor analog. Here, the spirit was gin, although this did not surprise me since other similarly named drinks including the Hawaii Cocktail feature juniper-flavored spirits instead of rum.
The Okolehao Punch offered up a slight citrus aroma that prepared the mouth for a creamy lemon sip. The swallow was a combination of orange and coconut notes that were elegantly spiced by gin's botanicals.