Tuesday, December 30, 2008


1/4 oz Green Chartreuse
Orange Twist

2 oz Batavia Arrack
1/2 oz Fernet Branca (*)
1/2 oz Demerara Syrup (*)

Flame the Green Chartreuse in a straight sided wine glass, and twist the orange peel over the flame. Extinguish the flame after a minute or so. Stir the other ingredients with ice and strain on top of the extinguished Chartreuse. Drop in original orange twist.

(*) Postnote 1/31/22: The current spec at Drink is 2 oz Batavia Arrack, 1/4 oz Fernet Branca, 1/4 oz Demerara Syrup, 1 dash Angostura Bitters with the same 1/4 oz Green Chartreuse on fire plus the orange twist. I prefer the balance with 1/2 oz Demerara Syrup and I do not drop in the twist. Moreover, I slowly strain into the flaming Chartreuse to extinguish the fire over the course of a few seconds.

To keep up with Andrea's tiki-themed adventure, John Gertsen at Drink made me a Krakatoa on Sunday night [1]. I cannot recall what conversation preceded him deciding to make me one or whether I just told him to make me what he was already appearing excited about creating for me. The common thread between this drink and my first one was the Fernet and the orange oil flavors. The Krakatoa uses a base spirit called Batavia Arrack, a spicy sugar cane and red rice rum distilled in Java, and the drink is symbolically named after the island near Java which suffered a tremendous volcanic eruption in 1883.

Tastewise, the flaming of the Green Chartreuse gave it a more vegetal almost celery like flavor. The spiciness of the Batavia Arrack worked well with the Chartreuse and Fernet Branca flavors. Indeed, the cumulative taste met and actually exceeded the high level of showmanship in the creation of this drink.

[1] Sunday was also the 8th night of Hannukah, and Drink was celebrating this festival with flaming drinks such as this and the Blue Blazer, Scorpion Bowl, and others. If only cocktails and religion could be melded so beautifully...


Craig said...

Sam made me a Krakatoa last night (2/25) when I asked for a drink featuring Batavia Arrack. It was awesome. I'd never had Batavia before, so he poured me a small sample of the spirit to sip neat in order to pull out the flavors from the drink. Interesting stuff, I may have to pick some up.

My (vegetarian) friend visiting from New York had a drink with their bacon-infused bourbon. It was intense.

frederic said...

I believe the bacon-infused bourbon was from Don Lee, the visiting bartender from Please Don't Tell (NYC) who was here this past week.

The best use of Batavia Arrack is for classic cocktails is making Swedish Punsch which can then be mixed into drinks. Deep Ellum in Allston has a drink or two (one of which we wrote up here) on their menu using their version.

Otherwise, Batavia is a great funky rum that can be swapped for Rhum Agricole in many recipes.

Craig said...

That makes sense... My friend was saying that he'd seen the bacon bourbon at PDT, and Sam mentioned they had a guest bartender from there.

I think next time I hit D.E., I'll get something with Swedish Punsch.

Have you ever done a Ti punch (or some variant thereof) with Batavia? I guess Martinique and Indonesia are on the same latitude...