Who doesn’t love a good swizzle?! I sure can’t resist them! Swizzles are, as the Trader Vic once observed, “the most delightful form of anesthesia given out today.” Cheers to that! If you have not been blessed with sipping on a swizzle before, they are a style of cocktail that involves stirring a drink with crushed ice using a swizzle stick, a distinctive cocktail tool made from a species of trees native to the Caribbean. Swizzles are often built in the glass (preferably a highball), followed by swizzling crushed ice among the ingredients, diluting and chilling the drink to perfection. They are topped off with several dashes of ANGOSTURA aromatic bitters. If you do not have a bottle at home, run right now to get some of their aromatic or orange bitters and get swizzling (there is a recipe for a Matcha Swizzle at the end of the post if you need swizzle-spiration)!
ANGOSTURA bitters are used in a number of swizzled drinks, but the most recognizable (in part due to the beautiful gradients of mint, spirit and bitters) is the Queen’s Park Swizzle. Created in Trinidad, it is constructed with rum and a heavy serving of ANGOSTURA aromatic bitters dashed on top. It is thirst quenching and oh-so delicious! ANGOSTURA bitters were invented in 1924 by a man named Dr. Johann Siegert. They were originally intended for medicinal purposes such as stomach ailments, but much like many medicinal ingredients of the time, were then used in tipples. After a move to Trinidad and Tobago, their use developed into a bittering agent to top tasty cocktails to bring them to life. And the rest is delicious history!
To bring more awareness to the swizzle, THE HOUSE OF ANGOSTURA created Swizzle Royale, a North American bartender competition. They have invited bartenders in seven cities across the US and Canada to create their own spins on swizzled drinks. Each event is hosted at a local bar and judged by industry leaders. Last Monday’s competition in Oakland was comprised of three rounds. The first saw eight contestants from California facing off as they created their original swizzles, mastered prior to the competition. After the judges voted for their favorite recipes, the second round placed four swizzlers in a speed competition in which the bartenders were challenged to make two rounds of three classic swizzled drinks in five minutes. (Woah!) Finally, the contest was narrowed down to the top two contestants, who then went head to head for a mystery box round! The final two remaining contestants were both female bartenders from Pagan Idol in SF, luckily familiar with more esoteric tiki and tropical ingredients. The box contained ANGOSTURA orange bitters, Pepino melon and matcha powder. The round allowed them 15 minutes to taste and contemplate the box’s items as they came up with a new swizzle recipe using the ingredients. In the end, Jeanie won by a small margin with her Matcha Pepino Swizzle. The earthiness of the matcha was tempered by the chocolatey creme da cacao, tangy passionfruit and the ANGOSTURA orange bitters. It was perfect for the warm day in Oakland! Be sure to check here to see if Swizzle Royale is coming to city near you!
Are you a home bartender? Enter the ANGOSTURA #SwizzleContest and join ] the fun! The contest is open to all in the United States until the end of August 2018. Create your very own take on this tiki classic and enter for a shot to win a trip to the Austin City Limits Music Festival this October. The winning drink will be served at ANGOSTURA’s VIP booth during the festival so music lovers in attendance can enjoy the ultimate swizzle. If you need some inspiration, get Jeanie’s recipe below. Happy Swizzling!
glass: snifter or highball
- 1.5 oz Angostura 7
- .5 oz Angostura 1919
- .75 lemon
- 1 oz passionfruit juice
- 1 oz pepino matcha syrup (recipe below)
- .5 cream de cacao
- 1 dash Angostura Orange bitters
- garnish: Orange twist, orchid
Pour ingredients into snifter, add crushed ice, swizzle. Garnish with orchid and twist of orange.
Pepino Matcha Syrup
- 1/2 Pepino melon
- 4 grams matcha powder
- 2 oz Demerara sugar
- 1/2 oz water
Muddle 1/2 pepino with one packet Matcha, Demerara sugar, and water in a shaker. Shake and strain. Store in a sealed container in the fridge.
This post is sponsored by ANGOSTURA All opinions are my own. Thank you for reading and supporting the partnerships that keep the cocktails flowing on Craft + Cocktails!