Wednesday, June 1, 2011

white witch

Juice 1/2 Lime (1/2 oz)
1/2 oz White Crème de Cacao (Marie Brizard)
1/2 oz Cointreau
1 oz White Jamaican Rum (J.Wray & Nephew)

Add to Sling glass with ice and stir. Fill with soda water (~2 oz). Decorate with a spent lime shell and mint sprigs dusted with bar sugar. I skipped the sugar dusting, used crushed ice instead of cubes, and added a straw.

After the Theresa #4, I was still in a highball mood, and I spotted a drink, the White Witch, that would make use of the new bottle of Marie Brizard crème de cacao that was replacing a less glorious brand. I found the recipe in our 1972 edition of Trader Vic's Bartender's Guide but not in the 1948 version; the book provides little information about the drink save for that it was probably created some time in that 24 year span. Given that the drink calls for Jamaican rum, perhaps the White Witch refers to Annie Palmer who married the owner of the Rose Hall Plantation in Jamaica in 1820. This husband and Annie's next two husbands died suspiciously and it was hypothesized that Annie brought about their demise. Stories of her deep involvement in voodoo, romantic involvements with her slaves (before murdering them too), and the like suggested that she was indeed a psychopath to be feared. Perhaps the drink would make a good nerve calmer after a spooky séance or a thirst quencher after playing a round of golf on the Rose Hall estate (now a Ritz-Carlton golf resort). With neither of those two options open at that moment, I just figured that the drink would be tasty for crème de cacao pairs up well with Cointreau in the Prospector Cocktail and works well with with citrus in the Mady and Twentieth Century.
The mint garnish contributed greatly to the aroma and, along with the spent lime shell, helped to break up the stark absence of color. On the sip, the lime and soda water provided a crispness that was also flavored by the orange notes from the Cointreau. Meanwhile on the swallow, the funky notes from the overproof Jamaican rum were chased by a lingering chocolate note from the liqueur. Overall, the White Witch was dangerously easy to drink and the flavor combinations did indeed play well together.

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