The Punch

1 July 2022 | Cocktails
The Punch

With this article we provoke a bit of a gang war, two clans will necessarily see a reason to clash: Agricole versus industrial!

To quote a great man: “Love each other f*ck! ". If you considered all spirits your babies, there would be less warfare! In short, let's skip the small talk, let's talk about punch.

Punch was probably born in Europe, when spirits were really too gross to be drunk on their own. The men then doubled their ingenuity by infusing spices and herbs in it in order to mask the taste of the bad cereal/fermentation/distillation -no mention to cross out-. Arranged rum therefore better watch out! We are still in the second half of the 17th century, that is 350 years ago!


Punch is therefore a mixed drink, refreshing or served hot. Less strong in alcohol than the cocktail, served individually and much less strong in alcohol than the spirit served neat.

Punch is your best evening companion, the one that will keep you in a light, pleasant state of inebriation, without ever attacking you by surprise!

To let yourself be seduced - but not deceived! - by this beverage, a certain number of provisions are to be expected. We call it the 4 pillars of Punch, they have been around for more than 3 centuries so don't be clever trying to improvise yourself expert without even following them.

1. Oleo-saccharum

Oleo what???? It's a "banal" infusion of lemon in sugar. More specifically, the lemon essential oils that will impregnate your powdered sugar. It's just awesome. You must have wondered what gave your lemon pie the good lemon taste, hint: it's not the juice.

Add the skin of the lemon (never green) to the powdered sugar, try to remove as much of the "white" as possible, which is bitter. Leave to infuse for 1 hour.

Tip: If you have an effective grater, microplane if possible, grate the lemons and put the peel in the sugar, the effect is almost instantaneous.

2. The Shrub

The shrub is the lemon and sugar mixture impregnated with lemon oils. In this form, you can produce liters of it and keep it in the fridge for a while, the acidity and sugar preventing the development of bacteria. The shrub is the basis of all punches. If you add alcohol to the shrub, know that you can keep it in your cupboard without any risk. Tip for lazy people!

3. Order

In the cocktail, very often the order does not matter, it is liquids that you will mix. Here, depending on whether the punch is served hot or cold, the order matters a little more for purists.

Hot punch: The boiling water is added last, in order to keep the punch hot as long as possible

Cold Punch: Spirits are added last since powdered sugar does not dissolve well in alcohol

4. Proportions

Although the proportions often vary and the great punchers each had their own preferences, know that David Wondrich, a contemporary master, respects the following: 1 part acidity / 1 part sweetness / 4 parts alcohol / 6 parts soft .

Of course we adjust by tasting and as many times as necessary... well, don't drink all the punch down before your friends arrive!

Little punch recipe for well-meaning friends!

  • Grate 3 lemons in 200 grams of sugar, the famous oleo-saccharum. Remove the entire lemon rind. Add 200 grams (or 20cl) of freshly squeezed #nopulco lemon juice.
  • Pour 1 liter of fresh water over it. Mix until the sugar dissolves.
  • Then add a mixture of rum, here we like it full-bodied. 1/3 of Jamaican navy Strength, the Smith & Cross, delicious, 2/3 of a lighter rum. So 25cl of smith & cross and 50cl of Plantation 3 stars.
  • Add lots of ice cubes and serve!

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