The island's drinking culture has revolved around arrack
Sri Lankan coconut arrack is undeniably one of the purest, naturally derived alcoholic beverages globally, distilled through a natural fermentation process.
Nowadays, arrack has grown so popular that many delicious cocktails can be found in Europe too.
Even popular restaurants like Dishoom and Hoppers list it in their menus.
Most enjoy arrack on its own, but you can try your hand at mixing the liquor with tropical fruits, wine-based spirits and syrups for a refreshing blend.
Arrack is made by fermented sap of the coconut flower and it ranks among the world’s oldest beverages.
The island’s drinking culture has revolved around arrack since ancient times, and it has been consumed across South Asia for almost 1500 years. Nevertheless, its popularity seems to never decline.
Sri Lanka is one of the top producers, despite the great variety of arrack in other countries.
How is it produced?
The production process does not require many steps, but all are fundamental to produce the finest arrack.
The process begins before sunrise with toddy tappers scaling coconut trees to collect the sap, which is then collected in pots.
It is then naturally fermented, filtered and poured into wooden barrels.
The best-tasting arrack tends to lie in the barrels for more than a decade. They develop a deeper taste and it is then blended.
Original Cocktails with Sri Lankan Arrack to Try
Here you can find some original and easy cocktails to try at home:
- 51ml Ceylon Arrack
- 145ml ginger beer
- Fresh lime
- Pour Ceylon Arrack into a Highball Glass filled with ice.
- Add ginger beer to taste.
- Top off with a squeeze of lime.
- Garnish with a lime slice.
- 15ml Ceylon Arrack
- 35ml Banks 5 Island rum
- 3 fresh pineapple chunks
- 20ml lime juice
- 15ml smoked paprika syrup
- Mix up the smoked paprika syrup with the pineapple chunks.
- Pour all the ingredients into a cocktail shaker and top with ice.
- Shake thoroughly until all the ingredients have fully combined.
- Serve in a tall glass.
- 60ml Ceylon Arrack
- 6 Mint leaves
- 1/5-inch fresh ginger
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- 2 slices of mango
- 60ml mango puree
- Ginger ale to taste
- Lime juice to taste
- Mix up the mint, sugar, mango slices, ginger and lime juice at the bottom of a large glass.
- Add crushed ice to the top, and pour the Ceylon Arrack and mango pulp into the glass.
- Mix well with a bar spoon.
- Add crushed ice and top up with ginger ale.
- Garnish with strands of ginger and a sprig of mint.
- 60ml Ceylon Arrack
- 25ml lemon juice
- 2 tsp of caster sugar
- 2 drops of peach bitters
- Egg white
- Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and serve in a wide glass.
- 25ml Ceylon arrack
- 25ml El-Dorado three-year-old rum
- 12½ml Turkish delight syrup
- 3 dashes of absinthe
- Mix all the ingredients together in a cocktail shaker.
- Strain into a Turkish coffee pot, and consider topping it up with a splash of champagne.
- Strain into a small wine glass and garnish with a slice of fresh mango.
- Garnish with rosebuds and a piece of Turkish delight.
Try out these cocktail recipes and you can enjoy the wonders of Sri Lankan arrack.