Les vergers Boiron are the global leader in chef crafted: frozen vegetable and fruit purees and coulis for the high-end, food industry. They are made in France using flavors that speak of places far away, unlocking dreams and making new memories in each shake of the cocktail artists wrist.
I’ve been the grateful recipient of their tasty, high end products for several years now during Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans. I’m honored to share with you my thoughts because these ingredients are the reason why my cocktails are so memorable, every single time. They make it easy for me to do a great job and to make me shine like a pro. The elements in each taste are thoughtfully prepared using the best ingredients in the world in France. There is a flavor of Old World elegance meeting ultra-modern technology driven metrics, that is beyond anything that I’ve experienced to date. I’m proud to put my insignia upon them as one of my very favorite- and those who know me- know that I don’t give scores or ratings.
Blood Peaches are the basis for a cocktail that I find irresistible in the spring. Peaches are the first of the fruits that signal the coming warm months. Most people have never had a blood peach, much less imagine a more sumptuous way to swallow down the early harvest of this sun-ripened goodness. Each sip is packed full of the stone fruit essence, dry at the start, leading into a voluptuous creaminess across the tongue and lips- leading to a thirst inducing slurp across the palate- essential in a craft cocktail that includes both the Few Navy Strength gin and a healthy dose of Classic Massachusetts Rum. I used Privateer Queen’s Share. The combination of these two liquors couldn’t be further apart on the flavor scale, but married together with the Blood Peach and a dollop of the Les vergers Boiron: Lemongrass puree… I’m bringing the day of the sea back to the world of the voyageur and thrusting it upon the Rhumb Line- that imaginary line that runs around the circumference of the globe.
The Lemongrass puree evokes the exotic nature of travel to places like Vietnam where a healthy splash of sweet rice wine vinegar would do more than enliven a craft cocktail in a land without great refrigeration. It would heal the gut when compromised by uncertain oils and fat consumption. A dose of vinegar per day will definitely (stave off) the doctor today. (I’m not a doctor, but I did write Apothecary Cocktails – so you see where this is going…)
At any rate that mystical line that has my attention surrounds the center of the globe. By sea, the sailors have already weathered the doldrums, a place where the wind seems to be sucked out of your lungs and replaced with dank, cold and salty. A sailor could pour a gallon of brackish bilge scented water down his gullet and still be left with the stink of the sea. Enter the Navy Strength gin. This is hardy stuff. It lasts for months in a wooden barrel, gaining prestige with each roll of the stern. Like Madeira, which was reserved for the landed gentry and the officers, a well-aged barreled gin was a thing that sailors enjoyed. And why not? Anything to take the edge off of listing slightly and then not again for a week. It gives a man something to do other than go berserk.
Working in a bar can do the same thing. That’s why a drink program can feel like being stuck in the doldrums. No inspiration. No fun. That’s why I recommend using the Les vergers Boiron to your cocktail program. Why? Because it’s historic, that’s why. The sailors would have added anything to their rum, be it gin, citrus, water, sugar, caramel, molasses… What have you… It all would become punch of sorts. And punch is what you should be making every day in your establishment. It’s easy and it’s fun. It’s just not possible to pour every single bottle right down to the bottom. I know, having started as a bar-back so there is much shrink and waste that you can do something about that puts money in your pocket.
You cannot permit every last drop to go down the drain. There must be someone out there who is creative, a person who seeks to raise the bar. I’m not looking for the next ‘world’s best bartender’, but I am looking for passion! Les vergers Boiron make it easy to have that passion in every carefully made cocktail. Adding Navy Strength gin to pot-still distilled rum is that passion! And that splash of vinegar? To heal the gut. After all that side-to-side out at sea without good refrigeration has got to hurt. The same with rich cooking. A veritable thimble of vinegar, melded into a craft cocktail is preventative medicine for the gut! Just ask the early Apothecarian. I did by writing an entire book about it. It’s named, Apothecary Cocktails.
So add these simple ingredients together and let the flavors speak for themselves.
Đông Nai Fizz (makes two)
- 3 Tbsp. filtered water
- 1 Tbsp. Lemongrass Puree from Les vergers Boiron
- 1 Tbsp. Blood Peach Puree from Les vergers Boiron
- 4 Tbsp. Sweet Rice Wine Vinegar (Most Vietnamese grocers have this)
- 3 oz. Few Navy Strength Gin
- 3 oz. Privateer Rum (of your choice)
- Angostura and Peychaud’s for healing the gut-along with the vinegar
- Splash of ice cold seltzer
- To a Boston Shaker filled ¾ with bar ice
- Add the liquid ingredients
- Shake Hard for 30 seconds to make a frosty treat
- Double Strain into antique coupe glasses
- Splash with ice cold seltzer (preferably from a hand spritzer)
- Dot with Angostura Bitters for good gastric health
- Dot with Peychaud’s Bitters, also for good gastric health and colorful demeanor!
To learn more cocktail recipes and insights incorporating fruit purees and sweet rice wine vinegar, visit Warren’s website.