A traditional cocktail in Peru, the chilcano is a mix of pisco, ginger ale and fresh lime juice. Celebrated as a national holiday in Peru, national chilcano week takes place during the second week in January and corresponds to summer in Peru. The chilcano is light and refreshing, and is a picture perfect cocktail to serve at any fiesta! While this cocktail is popular in the summertime, it’s a delightful drink that can be enjoyed year round.
I say we celebrate the chilcano all year by adding the flavors of the seasons. And ‘tis the season for cranberries, so let’s kick off the weekend by shaking up a Cranberry Chilcano.
To start, I made a cranberry purée for this cocktail, similar to the preparation for sugared cranberries, but I cooked the cranberries longer until they bursted and began to break down. Then I blended the cranberries and simple syrup in a blender until smooth.
- For Cranberry Puree
- 1 cup fresh cranberries
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- For Cranberry Chilcano
- 2 ounces Pisco
- 1 ounce cranberry puree
- 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed key lime juice
- Ginger ale
For Cranberry Puree: Combine fresh cranberries, sugar and water to a saucepan. Bring to a boil stirring until all sugar dissolves. Reduce heat, simmer and cook until all cranberries burst, stirring often. Carefully add to blender, puree until smooth, strain and cool.
For Cranberry Chilcano: Fill a glass with ice cubes. Add pisco, cranberry puree and lime juice. Top with ginger ale and garnish with lime wedges and cranberries.