When my sister and brother-in-law were coming to Portland, Andy and I decided to spruce up our bar. We bottled the nocino (Andy's amazing walnut liqueur), stocked plenty of brown spirits and made sure our bitters were still aplenty. As the self-proclaimed bartender of the household, I researched wintery beverages to shake up. I came across Allspice Dram repeatedly and began to research what it is. Allspice liqueur is made from the allspice berry, which is a Jamaican spice, used a lot in Caribbean cooking. Of course instead of buying it, I decided to make it myself. Although the process proved to be extremely simple, it does take longer than most simple infusions. Sadly, Leah and Matt never got to taste it (although with everything else, it was not missed!)
Today I got to finally bottle it up and I am anxious to whip up a drink. The process begins by crushing 1/4 cup of allspice berries in a mortar and pestle and then adding about a cup of rum (light or dark..we used Goslings dark rum). I let that sit for a week, shaking it up whenever you think about it. You then add a cinnamon stick and let it steep for another week or so (I sort of forgot about it). After two weeks of steeping, you strain the mixture and make a syrup out of 2/3 cup of brown sugar dissolved in 1 1/2 cups of water. Finally, mix the syrup with the allspice and...homemade allspice dram!
I've consulted various websites to come up with some cocktail ideas to feature my new addition to the bar, The view from the Great Island and Gramercy Tavern both have great ideas. Two at the top of my list are:
Jalisco Pear: tequila, pear liqueur and allspice dram
Winter Waltz: rye, apple brandy (luckily we have Oregon Clear Creek Apple Brandy!), Averna and allspice dram.
(Another shout out to Serious Eats for providing me with the recipe)