The Pisco Sour is the Perfect Summer Drink

This is actually a maracuya sour which is a passionfruit pisco cocktail, and my particular favorite.

I recently traveled to Peru. Let me tell you, food and drink in Peru are no joke. Food is delicious and always artfully presented. The drinking culture is also not for rookies. Beer is very common and the most popular beers are Pilsen Callao, Cosqueña, Cristal, and Arequipeña. Cosqueña and Arequipeña indicate where the beer is made, Arequipa and Cusco, respectively. You can find craft beers popping up all over the country and the beer culture is finding a home in the Andean country. 

But this recipe is for the Peruvian National Cocktail, the pisco sour. Peru and her southern neighbor Chile, fight over where pisco originated but I can’t speak to that. I do know that in 1883—as a result of the War of the Pacific—Chile ended up with quite a bit of Peru’s land, and Bolivia lost its coastal land leaving it landlocked. Needless to say, you can find pisco sours in both Peru and Chile, I will tell you about my experience with Peruvian pisco sours because that’s where I am. 

Pisco is distilled from wine unlike other grape distillates such as brandy which is distilled from the pomace left over from the grapes after the juice is taken to make wine. Peruvian pisco must have an alcohol content of 38-48% and has to be aged in a vessel that will not alter its flavor, copper, glass, stainless steel are ok, oak is not. 

You can find pisco at most liquor stores and even Trader Joe’s, believe it or not! 


Makes 1 pisco sour

  • 3 oz. pisco
  • 1 oz. simple syrup
  • 1 egg white 
  • 1 oz. fresh lime juice 
  • 2 drops bitters

In a cocktail shaker, add ice, pisco, simple syrup, the egg white, and the lime juice.  Shake vigorously until totally blended and the egg white has frothed up a bit, good 20 seconds. Strain into an old-fashioned glass and drop a couple drops of bitters on the egg white foam. Enjoy!