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Ti punch – short for “petit punch” – is a rum drink that is especially popular in the French Caribbean. As you might expect, given that the drink comes from an area that specializes in the production of rhum agricole, it features rum agricole. The drink is a simple one that is made with just rhum, lime and cane syrup or cane sugar. It is typically served in do-it-yourself style – with the ingredients laid out so that you can prepare the drink to suit your own tastes – when you are visiting the islands. Since this drink isn’t as widely recognized as some of the other drinks that start with the same base ingredients, like the daiquiri or caipirinia, it is best to customize the recipe to your own tastes and simply serve it that way to start with when introducing your friends to the ti punch.
You can use white rhum agricole or aged rhum agricole in this recipe, but you should absolutely use “rhum” and not “rum” produced elsewhere. The agricole is the dominant flavor in the drink and its unique flavor should definitely be the star. That said, you can adjust the amount of lime and sugar to suit your tastes and the particular rhum you are using to give it a little more sweetness or to highlight its herbal notes. Our favorite rhum for ti’ punch at the moment is Rhum Blanc JM, which is produced by Clement, but there are plenty of excellent rhums out there to choose from. Some say that the most traditional way to serve the drink is straight, without ice, however we like ours icy cold and refreshing.
2 oz rhum agricole (white or aged)
1/2 of a lime
2 teaspoons simple syrup
lime wheel, for garnish
Fill an old fashioned glass with ice. Squeeze in 1/2 of a lime (approx 1 tbsp juice), then add in simple syrup and rhum. Stir with a bar spoon to mix and chill. Garnish with a lime wheel.