When I first discovered this drink, I was working at Microsoft programming the user interface for Avatar Kinect, and Microsoft internally calls the Kinect user interface “NUI” which stands for “Natural User Interface.” Of course, the idea of a drink called Nui Nui appealed to me, but I didn’t have any allspice dram, and finding it in Washington has been difficult.
It took me a while to get around to it, but I followed Imbibe Magazine’s recipe for Allspice Dram. The recipe is very easy, and costs less than half of what it would take to buy a bottle of allspice dram. Some recipes call for cinnamon or other spices in addition to the allspice, but my philosophy is that if I want other flavors in my drink, I will add them explicitly. I’d rather have a strong allspice tincture and a strong cinnamon tincture, which I can mix at drink-time, because that maximizes my flexibility.
Chuck’s Jamaican Pimento Dram (Allspice Liqueur) No. 3
2-1/4 cups 151-proof Demerara rum
1/2 cup whole dried allspice berries, crushed
3 cups water
1-1/2 lb. brown sugar
The Nui Nui was basically the impetus for me to make this liqueur. I learned the recipe for it from Kaiser Penguin, though the first two times I made it I didn’t quite follow it to the letter. Somehow, even though he has a giant picture of the drink with crushed ice, I managed to double strain it and serve it up. It wasn’t bad that way, but as I was gathering the links for this post I realized my error, and decided to make one up in the proper fashion:
4oz dark rum (Flor de Cana)
1/4oz pimento liqueur (homemade)
3/4oz cinnamon-vanilla syrup
1oz lime juice
1oz orange juice
2 dashes Angostura bitters
Shake with crushed ice and pour it all into the glass. Garnish with a long orange peel.
The difference between ‘up’ and ‘crushed ice’ for this drink is amazing! The additional dilution from the crushed ice makes the drink much colder, and as you drink it, there is the sensation of the texture of cold plain water intermixed with the more viscous texture of the drink. Surprisingly, the intensity of the flavor does not suffer from this preparation, as long as you drink it before the ice gets scared.
I folded my orange peels into a rose shape after I expressed the oils on top of the drink. A cinnamon stick, cut to be slightly taller than the glass, positioned like a straw, would not be amiss here either. Why not use both?