The Missionary Proposition

MPvev copy copy

by Raul Faria

The Missionary Proposition was named after the liqueur Benedictine, which brings to mind images of Benedictine Monks working on healing potions of different herbs and flowers. Wait… what did you think that name meant? Get your mind out of the gutter! The name is a fun double entendre and the cocktail itself is pretty sexy too if you ask me. The Missionary Proposition was created for VeeV Acai Spirit. Acai are antioxidant rich, superfood berries that grow in the Brazilian rainforest and taste like a blackberry, blueberry and blackcurrant berry combined. When creating the cocktail I wanted to balance sweet with tart and bitter then add layers of spices and herbs. My initial inspiration for the cocktail (and the name) was what I imagined European Explorers and Christian Missionaries had both found and brought to Brazil back in those days and how distinct Tropical and European flavors can combine and find harmony in the glass. Another aspect of the inspiration behind this cocktail was the tag line for this competition “A better way to drink”. I wanted to show that your cocktail can be very straightforward and simple to make yet contain an insane amount of complexity of flavor. From the bright, tropical notes of the VeeV Acai Spirit, to the bitter orange notes in the Campari, a touch of Benedictine rounding it all out with its ancient recipe of herbs and spices, I think that definitely a better way to drink. Ready to make one?

1) Lets get our tools together; we will need our Boston Shaker, our Hawthorne Strainer, a Citrus Press, a Jigger with a 1oz and a .5 oz measure, and a Cocktail (Martini) Glass. Our shopping list will consist of VeeV Acai Spirit, Campari, Benedictine, Bittermans Xocolatyl Mole Bitters, Egg Whites and Oranges. Optional tool will be our Double-Strainer to catch any seeds or pulp from the oranges.

2) Lets begin with .25 oz Egg Whites to our mixing glass portion of the Boston Shaker. Id recommend using the small cartons of Egg Whites as they are pasteurized and ready to go, but if you’re pretty egg savy go right ahead and use fresh eggs and seperate the whites from the yolks.

3) Now we can add 1 oz of fresh Orange Juice to our glass. If you do not have the oversized Citrus Presses that will fit an Orange Half then simply cut the Oranges into pieces that will fit the standard Citrus Press. Optionally and recommended is the use of the Double-Strainer to catch any seeds or pulp. I would squeeze the juice beforehand and strain it through the Double-Strainer and have it set aside for later use.

4) Time to add the star of the show, 1.5 oz of VeeV Acai Spirit. VeeV is made from wheat based distillate and flavored with Acai Berry extract. The Acai berries are processed immediately upon harvesting to ensure full Acai flavor makes into the bottle. It’s a bright, citrusy spirit that’s fun to mix with. VeeV Acai Spirit is also the first carbon neutral spirit and the company donates 1% of all sales to rainforest preservation.

5) Next up is our 1 oz of Campari. I found the bitterness of the Campari plays well with the berry sweetness of the VeeV.

6) Now lets add our .25 oz of Benedictine to the glass. Benedictine is a secret recipe reportedly originating from a Benedictine Abbey that was destroyed during the French Revolution. That “Da Vinci Code’esque” origin may or may not have been the embellished by Benedictine’s creator, the prolific wine merchant Alexandre Le Grand, who was very focused on marketing his product. It is a blend of multiple single herb distillates and is a key ingredient in the classic cocktail Singapore Sling.

7) Lets add our 4 dashes of Bittermens Xocolatl Mole Bitters. This stuff has fun cacao, cinnamon and allspice notes and adds a fun layer of flavor to Old Fashions and Manhattans.

8) We are going to “Dry Shake” our cocktail first to help develop a nice foam on top. Dry shaking is merely shaking without the ice. This is primarily done with cocktails that contain egg whites. So lets get our dry shake on! Now that we have our agitated liquid in the can (since that’s where it will end up after we separate our glass and tin) we will add ice to the tin and place the mixing glass inside and create the seal with the glass this time. Now shake! Strain into our chilled cocktail glass and garnish with an expressed orange peel. Enjoy 🙂

The Missionary Proposition- 1.5oz VeeV Acai Spirit, 1 oz of Campari, 1 oz Fresh Orange Juice, .25 oz of Egg White, .25 oz Benedictine, 4 dashes of Bittermens Xocolatl Bitters, Dry Shake, Shake, Strain into a chilled Cocktail Glass and garnish with an expressed Orange Peel.

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