“One part sour, two parts sweet, three parts strong and four parts weak and a pinch of spice” muttered the Hatter, waiting ever impatiently for something, not quite remembering who.
While this snippet didn’t make it into Carroll’s epistle, it is a valuable lesson in the construction of punch. It was passed on to me by Jacob Briars, vodka professor, chairman of the drinking classes and curator of the world’s largest collection of Hawthorn strainer springs.
I had a challenge of making punch for a hundred people. This recipe tantalized and intrigued, while being strong (and odd) enough to not be readily consumed by all in attendance.
Garden Party Punch (fills a 10 litre punch bowl)
3 750ml bottles of 42 Below feijoa vodka, 750mls fresh squeezed lemon juice, 1.5 liters elderflower cordial, 1.5 liters of cloudy apple juice, 1.5 liters of ginger beer.
The sober among you will know that only makes 7.5 liters. I’d suggest filling up 2 liters of that available space with a giant ice cube, done in layers with fruit or a fresh (non poisonous) flower. The remaining space should accommodate at least a cucumbers worth of thin slices, the adventurous among you could cut stars or other event relevant shapes. A good handful of ripped mint leaves will finish things off wonderfully.
Stir frequently and sip wisely.
The elderflower turns the taste of the feijoa up to the max, as my American cousins are fond of saying. If you don’t know what a feijoa is, I suggest a trip to New Zealand, where they are prevalent, or Chile, where they are native.