Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Haitian Libation

February 19, 1942 is arguably the lowest and darkest day in the administration of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. It was on this day that he signed Executive Order 9066 which laid the foundation for the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. But what does this have to do with cocktails? Well, aside from Frankin Delano Roosevelt? Nothing. But FDR does measure favorably in terms of cocktails.

Remember, FDR is the President who led the charge to have the 18th Amendment to the United States Constitution (aka Prohibition) repealed with the 21st Amendment. Not only that, FDR was an avid drinker who loved his martinis and apparently came up with an oddly named cocktail called The Haitian Libation. Now according to the Sloshspot.com blogpost Presidential Cocktails: History of the White House Wet Bar the Haitian Libation is described as such:
His “Haitian Libation” was a mixture of dark rum, orange juice, brown sugar, and an egg white, shaken in a  tumbler. According to his son Elliott, this drink was best suited “for women companions, when he wanted them to feel frivolous.”
Apparently FDR liked to get his groove on with frivolous feeling ladies. Rock on!!!! In terms of the Haitian Libation, I have no idea on why it was called that or what the measurements are in terms of making the cocktail.

Perhaps FDR had it made with a Haitian rum such as Rhum Barbancourt? This would make sense since according to the Los Angeles Times article by Scott Kraft entitled In Haiti, a rum everyone can agree on  dated February 9, 2010:
When President Franklin Delano Roosevelt arrived here in 1934 to mark the end of America's occupation of Haiti, he insisted on toasting the hand-over with local Barbancourt rum.
Well, that kind of gives some validity to the theory I have on the name but it still leaves me with two issues. One is that I still don't know the measurements. Two is that I don't have any Rhum Barbancourt. Guess I'll have to just wing it. Here is what I came up with:

The Haitian Libation a-la SiscoVanilla
1.5oz Dark Rum (I Used Bacardi Select)
3oz Orange Juice
.5 teaspoon of Brown Sugar
1 egg white

Build in a cocktail shaker. Dry shake (shake with no ice). Add ice to shaker and shake vigorously. Double strain into a glass.
Now mind you folks, this is my first attempt at making a cocktail with an egg white so I am really working in uncharted territory here. So how was it.

As you can see, the cocktail has a nice frothy head and that's due to the egg white. I have to say that this cocktail is light and rather refreshing. The orange flavor of the juice stands out and the rum hangs out sublimely in the background. I thought that adding the brown sugar would make this a supremely sweet cocktail. It doesn't. I actually like it very much. Definitely a nice spring/summer cocktail. Now I don't knowif  it it'll make me "frivolous".

Perhaps I should make a trip down to The Rum House and see if they make it with Rhum Barbancourt or would attempt to make it with some other rum. Sounds like another field trip for good old Sisco Vanilla.

Until Then Happy Drinking,
Sisco Vanilla