There's aloe in your drink

Always thought to be the humble wonder plant, this ingredient can bring that much-needed kick to your drink.

The uses of aloe have been preached about for ages. Known for its umpteen health benefits, aloe has found its way into our diets. But what would you say about adding it as an ingredient to your cocktail?

With people becoming conscious about their diets, they even want to indulge guiltlessly by adding a bit of a healthy dose to their drinks.

The cocktail game is growing by leaps and bounds. People are not hesitating to experiment with different ingredients and flavours. And aloe vera in cocktails has been a pleasant change we have seen. With healthy drinks becoming a trend, so did drinks with aloe vera.

The aloe vera has made its way into herbal liquors like Amaro. The drinks give a refreshing, summery feel too. The addition of aloe in your drinks keeps you hydrated too. Using aloe vera may seem a little unconventional, but it is one of the best ways to use the juice.

Chareau is a new aloe-based liqueur that has been gaining in popularity. It is made from Northern California grapes, then infused with cucumber, spearmint, lemon peel, muskmelon. Lastly, add aloe vera juice. The liqueur has a clean, fresh taste, which will get you asking for the next.

Aloe juice can be used very easily with absolutely any spirit you like. The addition of the ingredient just adds that hydrating and refreshing touch to your drink. A few of the spirits it mixes well with are gin, tequila, scotch and bourbon. Herbaceous spirits go well with aloe vera — you can also add it to your vodka cocktail. A delicious concoction of lime, water, aloe vera, mint, vodka would be an absolute delight.

However, one needs to ensure that the aloe vera flavour isn’t overpowering. This wonderplant may have a subtle taste but it isn’t insignificant. The presence of the ingredient in a drink can be very much felt. Hence, it is imperative to work on proportions.

If you are using aloe vera gel, be warned that it can get a bit thick to use in a cocktail. The texture won’t get any thinner when you mix it with other ingredients. Always dilute it with a bit of water and then add to the cocktail. Add ingredients like lime, cucumber and mint to balance out the flavours.

Make sure the aloe vera is fresh and straight from the source. One thing we should keep in mind when making aloe vera cocktails is, follow the recipe to the T.

If the recipe requires being shaken in a shaker, don’t make the mistake of thinking a stirrer could do the job. Don’t overdo the aloe vera in your drink. It is easier to use aloe vera juice than the gel. Always remember to add the aloe vera to your drink in the end so that it preserves its nutrients.

Here’s to more experiments!

Subhadeep Datta is the general manager at Goldfinch Hotel, Mumbai

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