I created the Constant Gardener all the way back in 2011 when I was still a relatively green bartender at Clover Club. I was trying to come up with some new drink ideas by taking the “I wonder if this would work?” approach. Turns out, a Daiquiri with red bell pepper and peach liqueur actually does!
Red bell pepper's peppery zing and striking sweetness translate extremely well when muddled into cocktails and peach pairs brilliantly with savory ingredients. The result is crisp, refreshing, and surprisingly delicious.
For peach liqueur I recommend Massenez Crème de Pêche, though any should do, even so-called peach schnapps (schnapps the German word for fruit brandy, though it’s typically used in the U.S. to label liqueurs, often of lower quality.) For rum, I love Flor de Caña 4 in this. And yes, the name is shamelessly plagiarized from the Ralph Fiennes and Rachael Weisz film. Great movie.
2 oz white rum
¾ oz lime juice
¾ oz peach liqueur
¼ oz simple syrup
4 small pieces red bell pepper, about the size of a quarter
In a shaker, muddle the pepper with the simple syrup and peach liqueur, then add the lime and rum. Fill with ice, shake and fine strain into a chilled coupe or martini glass. Garnish with a slice of bell pepper, if you like. Though none is necessary.
If you to post a shot of the Constant Gardener
on Instagram, please consider tagging
My History with the Constant Gardener
I’ve always loved this drink, as have most of who've ordered it. Unfortunately, that number is pretty low. For whatever reason, the Constant Gardener never became the hit I hoped it would be. I even brought it back onto the menu a couple of times thinking it would finally find an audience, but it wasn’t to be. Oh well. At least it’s memory can live on here on Social Hour, my own personal cocktail pillow-fort.
Another tidbit while I’m taking a trip down bartender memory lane, the Constant Gardener is one of the first cocktails I created to ever get press. I submitted the recipe to Gary Regan’s list of 101 Best New Cocktails of 2012, an annual list he curated from 2011-2015. It was accepted, and Gary also wrote an article about it for the San Fransisco Chronicle. As you can imagine, I was beyond thrilled.