Where: Black Jack, 1612 14th St. NW
Bartender: E. Jay Apaga
Mystery Ingredient: Dulce de leche
Bartender Response: “It’s a cool flavor,” Apaga said. But one question remained: “How do you drink it?”
What We Got: A savory daiquiri with dulce de leche simple syrup and citrus flavors.
How It Tasted: You know those orange-shaped chocolates people give out at Christmas time? Imagine that, but lighter and more summery. “It’s super weird,” Apaga said. “I like it.” He was right; it is super weird.
Improv Points (1 to 5): 5. The cocktail’s simplicity was intriguing. Orange and lime with sticky, thick dulce de leche is not an obvious combination, but the acid helped cut some of the caramel sweetness and made the dulce de leche seem fresher, brighter, and less overpowering. Impressively, Apaga was able to transform the consistency of the heavy, sugary paste into something smooth and drinkable.
1 ounce of dulce de leche
ounce simple syrup
2 ounces Santa Teresa Rhum Orange liqueur
Juice of half a lime
Combine dulce de leche with simple syrup in a cocktail shaker, stirring to dilute. Add orange liqueur and lime, cover with ice, shake thoroughly. Double strain into glass.
Photo by Adele Chapin