Chef Lili Dagan knows the antidote to quarantine gloom is a tropical drink. Here’s her recipe for a bright and frothy cocktail we’re calling el Gajes del Oficio, or “the occupational hazard.”
I live in Bushwick, right down the street from a place called Tulicingo Deli Grocery. I can always count on them to have super cheap and extremely ripe fruit. While out shopping the other day, I passed by a bin of pineapples so fragrant that I couldn’t help but buy one. As the weather starts to warm up, all I want to do is sit outside and sip on a tropical drink. I can’t go to a bar right now, but here’s what I came up with instead.
This cocktail is sort of the lovechild of my three favorite patio drinks: a mezcal negroni, a piña colada, and an Aperol spritz. It’s a little labor intensive, but I promise it’s worth it (and hey, we have the time). Can’t find fresh pineapple? I suppose canned will do.
Cocktail recipe: el Gajes del Oficio
- 1 pineapple
- 2 limes
- 1 oz Aperol
- 2 oz mezcal or Tequila
- 1 jalapeño
- Spiced salt, for the rim (we used Tajin)
- Peel, core, and dice your pineapple. Save the skins!
- Make some pineapple water. Transfer the reserved skins to a stockpot with a knob of fresh ginger and 4 cloves of smashed garlic. Bring to a boil and then simmer on medium heat for 40 minutes. Simmer for 40 minutes, then strain and let cool.
- While the pineapple water cools, blend the pineapple and strain it through a fine mesh sieve.
- To assemble, gather a cocktail shaker, a glass, some ice cubes, limes, a citrus juicer, Aperol, mezcal (tequila would work too), and some spicy salt.
- Salt the rim of your glass and prepare your garnishes (I used a wheel of lime, you could add a jalapeño wheel if you’re feeling spicy!) and plop a few ice cubes in there.
- Add a few ice cubes into your shaker, 2 oz of pineapple juice, 2 oz of pineapple water, 2 oz of Mezcal, 1 oz of Aperol, juice of half a lime, 3 slices of jalapeño and then shake it.
- Strain into your prepared glass and garnish with a wheel of lime. Enjoy!