In your opinion Luca, what is it about the Daiquiri that has made it a constant throughout drinking history?
The Daiquiri has stood the test of time, as with most classic cocktails, due to its beautiful simplicity. The mixture of Bacardí white light rum, lime and sugar syrup tastes refreshing and exquisite, but can be challenging to balance, and is therefore the mark of a great bartender. Its straight forward recipe allows room for interesting variations, and its association with the Caribbean has seen it morph from its origins as a Chilean industrialist’s after-work concoction to frozen fruit versions slurped in the sun. It’s the Madonna of cocktails, not only surviving changing eras, but leading the way.
What external influences inspired you from the era you have chosen?
Oriole’s menu is inspired by various places around the world. We are always trying to make authentic links between the ingredients in our drinks, be they spirits or raw botanicals, and the places they hail from. Our Daiquiri is inspired by Dominica one of the Windward Islands in the Caribbean, where prickly pears and spices grow in abundance. The inclusion of prickly pear jam and nutmeg mace draws upon the exotic experimentation of the Tiki era.
What cues from the era have you included in your drink?
The drink retains the elegance and simplicity of the classic Daiquiri, but is brightened up by the prickly pear jam and garnish.
Tell us about your Daiquiri and why people should drink it on National Daiquiri Day.
National Daiquiri Day is a good excuse to revisit one of the world’s most enticing recipes, and trying out some of the endless possible variations on the basic recipe. Also, it’s a cocktail with only one spirit (and a fine one at that) so the hangover won’t be (as) bad.
How will your bar be celebrating National Daiquiri Day?
At Oriole, we’ll be celebrating with the band ‘Group Atlantico’. They will be performing the music of Ernesto Nazereth, a Latin American pianist of the 1910s and 20s, whose diverse compositions draw upon music from across the Americas, including Brazilian choro, to Biguine from Martinique and Guadeloupe. No doubt he knocked back a few Daiquiris in his time!
Can you suggest one simple way that cocktail lovers can elevate their Daiquiri making at home?
Our rule for making drinks at home is never scrimp on the ingredients. As every good cook knows, the ingredients need to be the absolute best to achieve outstanding flavours. It’s no different with drinks. As well as that, investing in nice glassware and thinking about a simple garnish are small touches that everyone appreciates.
Bacardí Carta Blanca
Prickly pear jam
Oriole Bar, Smithfield Markets, East Poultry Ave, London EC1A 9LH.