We know, raw eggs in a cocktail sounds weird. But try a cocktail with it, and you'll understand why this technique has been around for over 150 years. Egg whites are a classic cocktail ingredient that bring silky texture and perfect presentation to Flips and Sours, a class of cocktails that are more sour-sweet than their namesake suggests. This post will give you the tools to make your own egg white cocktails at home, whether from a recipe or from your imagination.
Raw egg white is best used in cocktails that need texture to bridge the divide between ingredients that are on the extreme edge of flavor profiles. The whiskey sour is a classic example of this. Without the egg white, whiskey, lemon, simple syrup, and bitters is a delicious combination but it does not taste smooth. It tastes very sour, very sweet, and very boozy in quick succession. The egg white aerates and emulsifies the cocktail, pulling the ingredients into a suspension that dulls the harsh edges of the sour, sweet, and boozy cocktail, making it smooth and balanced.
Wait, you ask, but is this actually safe to drink? Our lawyers say we need to tell you eating raw egg white is at your own risk. The truth is it's safer than eating cookie dough. We do it all the time, and it's totally worth it- just be sure to use fresh eggs from a company with good egg tracing practices (we recommend Eggland's Best).
There are three steps to a good egg white cocktail. The key is getting enough foam without over-diluting the cocktail. For this, you need a two-part shake. We do the classic dry shake here. Though the reverse dry shake has been popularized in recent years, we think it over dilutes the cocktail and prevents the foam from holding shape.
Step One- Separate the Egg. Egg white cocktails only call for egg white, and using boxed egg whites won't get you the texture you really want with this cocktail. Have two bowls on your countertop. Crack the egg and carefully pour the egg white out of the least jagged side of the eggshell (this helps keep pieces of eggshell out of your cocktail). Put the egg yolk in the other bowl and save it to make your next scrambled eggs even better. One large egg white is enough for 1.5 cocktails. If you enjoy a lot of foam, use one egg white per cocktail.
Step Two- The Dry Shake. Combine all ingredients, including the egg white, without ice in a boston-style shaker. Shake vigorously for 15-20 seconds to combine the egg white with the other ingredients. Pressure builds up here, so be careful when you're opening the shaker at the end.
Step Three- The Ice Shake. Open the shaker carefully and add enough ice to bring the liquid to 2/3 the height of the tall side of the Boston shaker. Close the shaker and shake for another 15 seconds. Strain into a rocks or coupe glass without ice. A julep strainer is best for this, or simply tilt your hawthorne strainer inwards to allow more foam to escape. Serve quickly!
Pro-tip: If you have an olive oil mister, clean it out and fill it with bitters. Mist bitters of your choice over the top of the foam for subtle smell and taste in the cocktail. If you have any cool stencils, hold them over the foam while you spray the bitters to create a cool design on the foam.
Be creative- Substitute the syrup you use to sweeten the cocktail and the bitters you use to add complexity. Think of a whiskey sour with ginger syrup instead of simple and cardamom bitters instead of aromatic. Or a rum sour made with True Kola Syrup and orange bitters. Share what you make on instagram and tag us @prattstandard.
Now try the Fanny Ward cocktail!