Recipe by Lawrence Christopher Gabriel

Head Bartender at Cigar Bar and Poker Room, Solaire Resort and Casino (Entertainment City, 1 Aseana Ave, Parañaque, 1701 Metro Manila)

The recipe takes inspiration from the Christmas song Pasko na Naman. Often played as the final song during the last Simbang Gabi or Misa de Aguinaldo, this song is composed by Felipe de Leon and written by Philippine National Artist for Literature and Music, Levi Celerio.

The cocktail is called Bisperas and it is meant to be a digestif. It tastes like a comforting minty white chocolate.

“I named it BISPERAS, which means the eve of Christmas feast. This is the time where we go all-out to celebrate and gather for a feast of Noche Buena. The table would often consist of quezo de bola, hamon, lechon, spaghetti, to desserts like leche flan, fruit salad, puto bumbong and many more. With a full tummy, some people prefer to drink hot coffee, hot chocolate or usually tea to aid their digestion. I used buttermilk not only as my acid component but because it has a lot to do with helping in digestion. It helps to wash down spicy and oily food. It can also treat stomach ailments, which we can get from too much eating. Yellow Chartreuse was used as the herbal qualities are similar but way better than tea. As a sweetener, I used white chocolate syrup, because we Filipinos love chocolates in all forms. I just opt for the white to be more relevant in Christmas time. Lastly, my base spirit is Bulleit Bourbon. Nowadays Filipinos are diverting from gin and rum to whiskey, especially during special occasions. The rye content of Bulleit can stand up to the sweetness of my other ingredients, and since this is my favorite bourbon, I always stock Bulleit for every occasion. That’s why this Christmas, I’m not only drinking straight bourbon, I’ll be making this Bisperas cocktail for me, my family and my friends for us to enjoy. Merry Christmas!” — Lawrence

Ingredients

45 ml Bulleit Bourbon
5 ml Yellow Chartreuse
60 ml *sweetened buttermilk
10 ml Monin white chocolate syrup

 

*How to make sweetened buttermilk

Combine 1 part simple syrup to 5 parts buttermilk. Stir, bottle and store in the chiller. Shake before using.

 

How to make the cocktail

Combine all ingredients in a shaker, add ice and shake.
Strain into a rocks glass filled with ice. Garnish with misletoe candy.

 

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