There's a little place just out of town,
Where, if you go to lunch,
They'll make you forget your mother-in-law
With a drink called Fish-House Punch.
So I'm late. The title of this here blog refers to my, speed, my life. And I'm a fairly busy guy, just like Boudreau....
Anyway, feeling stupid that I didn't get my submission in on time for this month's MXMO, and heading over to Bibulo.us, I noticed nobody wrote about Fish House Punch!!! Well well well...
Ted Haigh, aka the wonderful Dr. Cocktail, wrote an evocative piece about Fish House Punch in the September/October edition of Imbibe, so maybe that's why nobody tackled it. Who wants to follow up on Ted Haigh? Me? Not really. For the most part, he nailed it, offering history (the recipe originates in 1732, making it older than the nation itself), personal experience (drinking the punch at a ladies house who eliminated everything but the liquor) and a sense of time and tradition (autumnal rhapsody demands a drink "of ancestors and history").
I don't have that much to add. What I can say is that it is enjoying a healthy renaissance, popping up on cocktail menus around the world (1806, and Death & Co to name two), and that it works as a solo cocktail, too.
Fish House Punch
3/4 oz. dark rum
3/4 oz. Cognac
3/4 oz. peach brandy
1/2 oz. simple syrup
1/4 oz. fresh lime juice
1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
Shake, strain into ice-filled rocks glass. Garnish with a lime wheel and a single cherry.
I lifted the above recipe from the 2007 edition of the Food & Wine cocktail guide. I've been serving this at Union for over a year now, and the reception has always been favorable. If you'd like to try it as it's meant to be tried, I give you David Wondrich's adaptation from an 1862 recipe by some dude named Jerry Thomas in his recent book Imbibe.
1 pint fresh lemon juice
1 pound Demerara sugar
3 oz. peach brandy
27 oz. cognac
18 oz. rum
3 quarts water
He also gives his own individual serving along with some great backstory at Esquire.
There are some cocktails dredged up and respected simply because of their age and pedigree, and there are some that have withstood the test of time because, well, they're delicious. Fish House Punch falls in the latter category.
Posted by keith waldbauer at 9:23 AM