Anyone who takes a Peru tour has to try the national drink.The Pisco Sour cocktail is based around Pisco and lime juice, along with a helping of whisked up egg white. The drink was created by adding the ‘sour’ element in the English style through various ingredients that counteract the acidity of the small key lime used in the drink.
Pisco Sour Recipe
The classic recipe is based on 3 ounces of Pisco, 1 ounce of green lime juice to add the acidity, 1 ounce of syrup, 1 egg white, 6 cubes of ice and 1 or 2 drops of Angostura bitters used as decoration. The ingredients must be mixed in a cocktail shaker prior to serving. If a liquidator is used, then all ingredients less the egg white must be mixed for one minute, and for five further seconds after adding the egg white.
Origins of the national drink of Peru
Where to try Pisco Sour on your Peru tour
But don’t get disheartened. Following the pioneering work that took place at Bar Morris, many of the more elegant hotels in Lima of that era started to imitate the drink, including Hotel Maury and the exclusive Hotel Bolivar on Plaza San Martin, which remains today the most famous place in Lima to sup on a Pisco sour and are often pointed out by guides on a Peru tour. It is said that the great American writer Ernest Hemingway holds the record for the most Pisco sours consumed in one sitting there. Since such times the aperitif has spread not just within Peru itself, but further field thanks to the opening of Peruvian restaurants around the world.
Its diffusion has been spurred on by various initiatives to promote the drink over the years. In 2003 the Peruvian government took a decision to actively promote it both domestically and internationally. This has been implemented through initiatives such as the stipulation that all entities representing the Peruvian government, its diplomatic missions and consulates, must spend at least 50% of their budget for the purchase of spirits on Pisco. A ministerial resolution brought in on 22nd April 2004 decreed that the first Saturday of February of each year was to be celebrated as Pisco Sour day across the nation. In 2007 the National Institute of Peruvian culture declared pisco sour an official part of the cultural heritage of the nation.
Why a Pisco Sour back home never tastes as like the one had on your Peru tour….?
One big obstacle limiting the diffusion of Pisco sour around the world has to do with one of its key ingredients, the lime. The lime used is grown in the north of Peru and is significantly smaller than the more widely produced and globally exported Tahiti lime, as well as being notably more acidic, an essential aspect of the drink. So until there is a notable drive to export this variety of lime, barmen across the world will find it hard to replicate a true Pisco sour.
All the more reason then, if you’re heading to Lima or any city on your Peru tour, to hunt out the best bar for a well-made Pisco sour. You’ll be drinking to the health and heritage of a nation.