Panama’s Bird of Paradise Fizz

Panama's Bird of Paradise Fizz
Photo by Todd Huffman

This drink is a bit of an outlier. It showcases gin, and it hails from Panama, which is part of the Caribbean region, but not one of the islands. Still, it’s delicious and a perfect example of what a Caribbean cocktail can be.

This pretty pink sipper makes an appearance in The Gentleman’s Companion: Around the World With Jigger, Beaker and Flask (Derrydale Press, 1939), written by globetrotting mixologist Charles H. Baker. The drink originated at the Strangers Club in Colón, once a popular watering hole for weary travelers who sought passage through the Panama Canal Zone.

“We always have found welcome there during the [12 or so times] we have been in the ‘Zone’ going west to east, or vice versa,” wrote Baker, where this vibrantly hued drink provided “a colorful, eye-filling experience.”

Adapted from Beachbum Berry’s Potions of the Caribbean (Cocktail Kingdom, 2013) by Jeff Berry

  • 3 ounces dry gin
  • 1½ ounces lime juice
  • 1 ounce heavy cream
  • 3 teaspoons raspberry syrup
  • 1 tablespoon egg white
  • 3 dashes orange flower water
  • 1 ounce club soda (more if desired)
  • 1 tropical flower, like bougainvillea, for garnish

In a cocktail shaker, combine gin, lime, cream, raspberry syrup and egg white with plenty of crushed ice. Shake well, and pour unstrained into a tall glass, leaving some room at the top. Add orange flower water, top with soda and stir. Garnish, and serve with a straw.

Tiki Time

Are the drinks at tiki bars Caribbean? Sometimes. They tend to be a mashup of influences from the South Seas, Hawaii, the Caribbean and beyond.

Published on March 23, 2017