New and improved – the oft-used phrase is applied quite a lot in the world of cocktalia, mixologists of every stripe constantly trying to improve upon tried and true classic tipples.
More often, dreck.
I feared the latter would be the fate of the Ti’ Punch Mojales.
One of the signature drinks at Le Piment, my absolute favorite restaurant in Orient Bay, St. Martin (I’ll have A LOT more to say about this place next week!), the Mojales is styled as somewhat of a new and improved Ti’ Punch.
As anyone who has ever enjoyed a Ti’ Punch (or read this) already knows, the Ti’ Punch doesn’t really need any new improving. It’s perfect. In fact to me, it may be the most perfect West Indian cocktail there is; a simple mix of rum, sugar, and lime – all measured to taste/capability – and artfully mixed with an authentic bois le le swizzle stick from Martinique.
No cocktail umbrella or fruit garnish of any kind.
A real, honest taste of the islands.
Le Piment’s Mojales version, though, does nothing to sully the traditional Ti’ Punch pedigree. In fact, to me, it charts a bit of a new course more representative of an entirely new drink.
Oh, tried and true Ti’ Punch ties are most definitely there, though. The drink’s foundation is a traditional Ti’ Punch – Rhum HSE blanc, lime, and one teaspoon of sugar. Le Piment’s added special touch: fresh-squeezed passion fruit juice, seeds and all. (There’s ice in there too, as you can see.)
The result is ridiculous refreshment; tart, though supremely balanced with the sugar keeping the passion fruit in check. Chewing seeds as the glass empties provides a nice added dimension as well; just an all around great drink you’ll want to sample again and again, whether dining at Le Piment (HIGHLY recommended) or just stopping in for cocktails after enjoying Orient Beach.