El Draque might be one of the oldest drinks in Cocktail Party, clocking in at around 430 years old (if the legends are to be believed). Yet, it manages to taste like a modern cocktail, something like a Mojito or a Daiquiri with even more carefully-chosen ingredients.
The legend in question claims that famed explorer/privateer/slave trader Sir Francis Drake was sailing somewhere near Havana, Cuba when his crew fell ill. Drawing on medical wisdom from the local Taino and Ciboney cultures, Drake concocted an elixir made from mint, lime, rum-soaked chuchuhuasi tree bark and a bit of sugar. Naturally, this cured his crew – and presumably delighted the locals, who then are claimed to have named a bark-free version after the name the Spanish used to refer to Drake in his privateer days.
Most versions of the recipe would have you muddle the lime, syrup, and mint in a the serving glass. This is fine – but we much prefer how the folks at Smuggler’s Cove do it, muddling in the shaker and fine-straining for a crisp, clean sip.
- 5 leaves Mint
- ¾ part Lime juice
- ¾ part Brown sugar syrup
- 2 parts Aged cachaça
Gently muddle the lime juice, mint, and syrup in a shaker. Add the aged cachaça and plenty of ice and shake well. Double-strain through a fine mesh strainer into a chilled cocktail or coupe glass.
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- El Draque: Legendary Precursor to The Mojito + The World’s First Cocktail at Uncommon Carribean
- Smuggler’s Cove: Exotic Cocktails, Rum, and the Cult of Tiki by Martin Cate