So About That Falernum...

 Ah, the metric system.  We kinda-sorta use it here in Canada.  On the back label of the Fabbri Falernum is a recipe for a Falernum Mai Tai.  The recipe is metric. The recipe is in Italian.  There are some English instructions as well on the back label but not a recipe per se. Instead there is merely a guideline of how much falernum to use as a ratio to the rest of the cocktail.  Odd. Oh well.

When we do use metric in Canada, specifically for liquid volumes, we only ever use litres or millilitres.  There may be exceptions in medicine and industry but for everyday use it is the case.  The Fabbri recipe is of course in centilitres which seems quite common in Europe.  I'm sure I've had some 70cL bottles of spirits. Rather than converting to ounces I made this recipe as is, in a Canadian fashion.  Anyway, on to the recipe:

Falernum Mai Tai
10 mL lime juice
15 mL falernum
15 mL orange curacao
20 mL dark rum
40 mL white rum
garnish: lime zest & dusting of cinnamon

I used Havana Club 3 Años and Bacardi Black. This is an alright drink.  If I was served this as a "Mai Tai" I would gladly drink it and enjoy it and then order something else if I was looking for a second drink.  That's life.

Outside of this cocktail though I've been quite impressed by this Falernum.  I had low expectations and my expectations were pleasantly exceeded. When I tried the syrup on its own it came across as a thick, subdued orzata with a hint of undefined spice. Once mixed into various cocktails I've found I enjoy some of the cocktails more than I did with my previous falernums and that the spice component of the cocktail is elevated. This is the case even when the amount of falernum is small, but it's not universal.  Ah, the alchemy of mixology. 

So what were my previous falernums? I used to always make my own but haven't for a while. Prior to the Fabbri I was (and still am) using Shameful Tiki Room Falernum. Before that was Barcarola (for which I also had low to mid expectations) when I had run out of homemade and wanted a cheap replacement in a hurry. I had intended, when I first bought the Fabbri, to present my notes and thoughts about each falernum I've made or bought. I no longer feel inclined to do this.  Unlike the various orgeats and orzatas I've bought or made over the years there is no clear "winner" to me.  Rather in an ideal setup and if the budget allows I'd have all these falernums available and possibly more!  

Just as not every rum is right for every cocktail not every falernum is right, for me, for every cocktail.

Stay tuned?        


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