The Tasting Panel magazine

September 2015

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september 2015  /  the tasting panel  /  1 15 R umChata is often touted as "a bartender's best friend," so we decided to see the liqueur in action at StillWater Spirits and Sound, a Prohibition-themed bar and live music venue located in Dana Point, California. StillWater Bar Manager Edgar Carbajal is a big fan of RumChata, and often finds himself mak- ing drinks with the horchata-flavored liqueur. "While people love drinking RumChata straight, a popular combination is RumChata and Fireball," Carbajal explains. "With fall coming up, we also serve a lot of Pumpkin Pie Bombs, which are like Jäger Bombs, except you drop a shot of RumChata into a pumpkin beer. They're delicious!" Since StillWater is located in Southern California, only a short drive from the Mexico border, Carbajal says that many people are familiar with horchata, the Mexican rice- and cinnamon-flavored milk drink on which RumChata is based. "Because people know and love horchata around here, even people who haven't tried RumChata are curious about it when they come in and see a horchata- flavored spirit. Once they try it, they love it and ask for more." One of Stillwater's popular winter drinks is the StillWater Coffee, made with hot coffee, Fireball and RumChata. Carbajal is also playing with the idea of a Rumchata-flavored hot chocolate cocktail for the winter. Carbajal cites RumChata's versatility and easy mixibility as one of the reasons it is so popular: "RumChata's rum flavor is very subtle, so it actually mixes well with other spirits like vodka and whiskey," Cabajal points out. "It actually mixes with almost everything, so the liqueur sells itself!" Although Carbajal has plenty of RumChata- flavored drinks up his sleeve for the winter, he's been whipping up a lot of RumChata Coladas, a drink that was recently added to the StillWater menu. "Since Rumchata and Piña Coladas are both creamy drinks, it seemed like the perfect combo. We don't use blenders at StillWater, so all the ice is hand-crushed, which gives it a more crafted feel." Proving its versatility even further, StillWater is looking to use RumChata beyond the cocktail sphere, with the kitchen considering various desserts made with RumChata, especially involving ice cream. "I'd love to do something like an ice cream float with RumChata," muses Carbajal. "Another idea we've been playing around with is fried ice cream with a Rumchata sauce." From coffee to coladas, StillWater is creating the perfect RumChata concoctions for any time of the year. RumChata Colada ◗ ¾ oz. RumChata ◗ ¾ oz. amaretto ◗ 2 oz. pineapple juice ◗ 1½ oz. coconut purée In a mixing glass, crush ice and all ingredients. Shake eight times and pour into a tulip glass. Garnish with a cinnamon stick and a sprinkle of cinnamon powder.

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