When a friend of ours, who is a bartender, heard that we were going to be in Lima, Peru, he immediately told us that we absolutely had to try a Pisco Sour while we were there. We had never heard of Pisco or a Pisco Sour, but we agreed that we would give it a try. We weren’t disappointed. Pisco is an alcohol that is distilled from grapes and is essentially a brandy. Although we’ve had whiskey sours before, a Pisco Sour is similar in that it utilizes simple syrup and lime juice, but it doesn’t taste at all like a whiskey sour. It basically tastes like a frothy lemonade, but don’t let its sweet taste fool you, it is a strong drink. Just because Pisco is distilled from grapes, it isn’t wine, it is forty percent alcohol, or eighty proof.
One of the reasons that it is so light and airy is that an egg white is added and then it is shaken vigorously. Some places use a blender, but the better Pisco Sours are made using a hand-shaker. The dash of bitters at the end adds to the taste and the presentation. We tried Pisco Sours while in both Lima, Cochabamba, and La Paz with varied results. Ultimately the best Pisco Sour that we had was the first one we tried in Lima. We bought a bottle of Pisco on our way home at the duty-free store in Lima and will be trying our own hands at making Pisco Sours here in the very near future. If you ever get the chance to try them, you definitely should, they are delicious.