• July 28, 2017

Cocktail of the Week: Prickley Pear

Alexis Jesup
By Eric Twardzik

Take whatever reservations you have about pink cocktails, and lose them.

Bite-sized Back Bay seafood staple Saltie Girl is ditching stereotypes via the Prickley Pear, a rosy-hued, serves-two concoction with no shortage of fierce flavor.

The secret to its success may lie in the purée of its namesake fruit, which turns the libation pink without tinting its flavor candy-sweet. The final mix—built on a base of tequila with a bit of Bénédictine and lightened by lime and agave syrup—is bright and refreshing but also gains a sharp, acidic bite thanks to a homemade pineapple shrub.

At Saltie Girl, the drink arrives in a fantastic glass vessel shaped like a fish, with two straws for immediate access—but until you build up a home collection of fish-shaped drinking vessels, you can opt for a pitcher instead.

Prickley Pear
3 ounces blanco tequila
½ ounce Bénédictine
1½ ounces pineapple shrub*
1 ounce fresh lime juice
1 ounce prickly pear purée
½ ounce agave syrup
Mint, orchids, and cocktail umbrellas, to garnish

Combine ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake until chilled. Pour into pitcher over crushed ice and top with a splash of soda. Garnish with mint, orchids, and cocktail umbrellas.

*Pineapple shrub (yields 1 quart)
2 quarts apple cider vinegar
1 quart sugar
¼  pineapple, cubed  

Add pineapple to apple cider vinegar and allow mixture to sit for three days in a refrigerated container. Combine mixture with sugar in a saucepan over medium heat, and heat to just before boiling. Simmer mixture until it is reduced by half. Keeps for two to three weeks, refrigerated.

Brian Samuels