Drink of the Week: Cilantro’s Pachamama

Cilantro has had some great cocktail lists in recent years and this winter’s selection of exotic libations with a  tropical bent is no exception. Aptly dubbed “Into the Wild,” the list features a No Speak Americano with Aperol, Punt e Mes and a black-tea-anise syrup; a Stray Greyhound with grapefruit juice, Punt e Mes and rosemary syrup; and a Lion Around with Lillet, vodka, gin and dandelion honey wine, among others.

But it’s the Pachamama, whose name references the Incan fertility goddess, that got my attention. It’s a gin-lemon-sugar drink that’s elevated with black walnut bitters and an absinthe rinse. Then, it’s served quite flamboyantly with a flaming sprig of thyme, as if it’s an offering to Pachamama herself. To achieve this dramatic flair the thyme has been soaked in Green Chartruse, which helps it flame awhile.

When it’s safe to drink the overall effect is a slightly smoky, very herbaceous cocktail that’s just right for any drinking altar (like a bar). If you don’t finish the whole thing they’ll throw you into the volcano, so drink up!

This gin-based cocktail is simple yet surprisingly complex.

This gin-based cocktail is simple yet surprisingly complex.

Pachamama

  • Absinthe rinse
  • 2 oz The Botanist gin
  • .5 oz lemon juice
  • .5 oz simple syrup (1:1 sugar to water ratio)
  • 3 dashes black walnut bitters
  • Garnish: Thyme soaked in Green Chartreuse

Method: Soak a sprig of thyme in Green Chartreuse. Rinse a martini glass with absinthe. In a cocktail shaker, combine gin, lemon juice, simple syrup and bitters with ice. Shake, then strain into the martini glass. Remove thyme from Green Chartreuse, set afire and place atop the glass. — Recipe courtesy Cilantro

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