Since April, Chris has been visiting from Chile and of course, like the proud Chilean that he is, talks incessantly about their national liquor, Pisco, and it’s accompanying drink, the Pisco Sour.

I’ve heard about the Pisco, talked about the Pisco, tried the Pisco and yes, the Pisco is good. With every party the Carvallo family had, inevitably Pisco made it’s appearance and with it, it’s friend the Pisco Sour. I have to admit, the Pisco Sour was never my drink of choice. I think it may be the addition of raw eggs combined with the liquor that always made me think twice about consuming this cocktail.

But nevertheless, Mrs. Carvallo would break out the blender, crack a few eggs and the let the Pisco flow.

This time around Chris brought over a new product from Chile, Pisco Capel.  It’s a ready made Pisco Sour.

Pisco Capel
Pisco Capel, a ready made Pisco Sour

Now you ask any Chilean where Pisco comes from and they will tell you with immense pride “CHILE!”.  But ask any Peruvian where Pisco comes from and they will tell you with immense pride “PERU!”  It’s been a heated debate between the two countries for years.  It may have even started a couple wars, who knows.  But what I do know is Chileans and Peruvians alike are quite proud of it.

I don’t know much about Peruvian Pisco, but fortunately, thanks to the Carvallos, I know much about Chilean Pisco which is made in the Valle del  Elqui in central Chile. The Elqui Valley, which is referred to as the “zona pisquera,” is the only pisco producing area in Chile. It’s a brandy that’s been distilled from muscat grapes grown in the region.

If you’re trying to hunt down a bottle of the stuff at the local LCBO, you’re most likely to find Pisco Control Reservado which is an 80 proof pisco.

So how do you make a Pisco Sour?  Well every Chilean will tell you a different recipe for this concoction but here is how I’ve been taught by the Carvallos, connoisseurs and frequent drinkers of the brew.

Pisco Sours
1½ oz Pisco (Pisco Control)
1 oz Simple Syrup
1 oz fresh Lemon Juice
½ Egg White

Combine all ingredients in a blender. Blend until the drink becomes frothy. Pour into a glass with fresh crushed ice.

For a twist on the Pisco Sour, try a Mango Sour. It’s a delicious and refreshing smoothie that you can enjoy on the patio on a hot summer day.

Mango Sours
1 can of mango juice from concentrate
1-1/2 cans of water
2 ripe mangos, diced
1 can of Pisco (or any favourite alcohol. I added Cachaca, a Brazilian liquor, to mine but you can easily substitute vodka)
crushed ice

Add all the ingredients to a blender and blend away!