30/30, #29: the Daisy de Santiago

Told you there’d be another Charles H. Baker drink before this whole 30/30 things was over….

Baker describes this daiquiri-with-benefits as “a Lovely Thing Introduced to Us through the Gracious Offices of the Late Facuno Bacardi, of Lamented Memory”, and says that “along with the immortal Daiquiri, this is the best Bacardi drink on record.”

That’s a tall claim, and one that might well stand up if Baker’s preparation instructions are slightly tinkered with. Baker says to serve the rum-lime-simple syrup combo over shaved ice in a large goblet, and then to float a half-jigger of yellow Chartreuse on top before adding a squirt of soda water, and garnishing with mint, fruit and whatnot.

I made a few adjustments to Baker’s recipe, and it could use one or two more; having almost always been disappointed by drinks constructed with shaved ice, I went the crushed route, in a double old-fashioned glass. And since the soda water would seem to disrupt the float, I added the bubbles first, and then attempted to float the Chartreuse, only to be reminded of how much heavier the liqueur was as compared to everything else in the drink as it quickly dribbled down through the ice and settled on the bottom of the glass in a hazy yellow cloud that was actually quite pretty, as you would be able to see if I’d bothered to photograph it.

Lacking specifics from Baker, I chose to go the white rum route with the Daisy de Santiago; next time, I’m going the aged route, and I imagine Bacardi 8 should serve quite nicely. I also skipped the garnish, which was foolish in a way, as the mint would have provided aromatics that this drink could certainly use.

The Daisy de Santiago has enough life in it to have earned a cocktail menu position at places including The Violet Hour in Chicago and Clover Club in Brooklyn; I’m curious to know how they make theirs, as it has the promise of being an absolutely lovely drink, but a little tweaking of the preparation is needed to really make it shine.

Here’s how I prepared it, with the suggested modifications I mentioned; let me know if you have details on how you or bartenders you’ve seen go about the same drink:

Daisy de Santiago

  • 2 ounces rum (I used the white rum from Appleton; go aged next time)
  • juice of 1 lime (about 1 ounce)
  • dash simple syrup
  • 3/4 ounce yellow Chartreuse

Shake the rum, lime and simple with ice and strain into double old-fashioned glass filled with crushed ice. Add about 1 ounce of soda water, and gently pour Chartreuse over top of drink. Garnish with a good sprig o’ mint — I’d say this is essential, for the aroma — and fresh fruit as desired.

This drink is part of 30/30, a series of 30 drinks in 30 days — or as much as I can keep up before collapsing in a weary, booze-addled heap.

4 Responses to 30/30, #29: the Daisy de Santiago

  1. Holy shit! He’s going to do it!!!! 30 in 30! Will that record ever be broken??!?!?
    I have witnessed history, ladies and gentlemen, and it stands before me with a beard!

  2. This was one of our ‘SF cocktail week’ drinks at Heaven’s Dog.
    We did 1 oz lime, 2 oz Barbancourt white, 1/2 oz yellow Chartreuse, 1/2 oz simple. build in a wine glass, add crushed ice, add 1 oz soda water, stir and top with a spanked mint tip.

  3. I make a point of going to the Violet Hour on the regular, and I’ve gotten the Daisy de Santiago a number of times, usually from Michael (the bar manager). Specifics:

    -Flor de Cana rum. They use FdC for basically every single drink that calls for white rum, and praise it mightily.

    -He hits the top of it with a couple dashes of their Spring Bitters. Not sure what’s in those, but they smell nice

    -This is probably the biggest difference: it’s served in a rocks glass with one big chunk of ice (and a straw), rather than over crushed ice. Crushed ice seems like it would dilute the drink too much too quickly, and I’d imagine a lot of the taste of the rum would be lost. I think there’s also very little soda added, if any.

    I know the basic VH Daiquiri recipe is 2 oz Flor de Cana, 3/4 oz lime, 3/4 1:1 simple syrup, so I imagine it starts with something like that…

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