Twisted Ti Punch. Named for Moonshine Cate

February 1, 2012

By: Cocktail Whisperer- Warren Bobrow

The Moonshine Cate cocktail is another in the series of unlikely combinations of flavor making their way into my twisted mind.  Did I someone whisper this into my ear?  Hoping that I would be listening or that I'd forgotten about them??  As a matter of fact I was listening to moonshine music on 

This afternoon I was day-dreaming about a bottle of Catoctin Creek Rye Whiskey that is sitting on the desk in front me. Rye Whiskey is one of my passions. 

I seek to write about the small producers in the business of distilling.  Why?  Because I too owned a small food business, unfortunately lost it in the melee' following Hurricane Hugo back in 1989.

I know how difficult it is to make it in the business world. 

Tasting Notes and two cocktails...

The Catoctin Creek product is lush and gorgeous in the mouth.  I think what I like most about it is the nose.  It has a sugarcane nose and a Maple Syrup finish.

So when I opened the cork finished bottle (nice touch!) of the Roundstone Rye I was immediately struck by how delicious the first taste was!  Creamy on the finish, a slight burn from the brooding 80 proof heat. 

On the easy to read label, emblazoned with two stalks of Rye- are the words ORGANIC.

I seek Organic spirits like Root, Snap, Rhuby, Bluewater Vodka, Van Gogh Triple Wheat Vodka.  All say ORGANIC on the label.  But I think what I like most is the words in the little circle on the label.  They read USDA.  

These words mean something to me

There is a glass on the table- a very special glass in my collection.  It is one of the first art glasses I bought out of the 50 or so hand-blown glasses that grace the bar.  This one is brown in color- so it primarily sees brown intoxicants.  In the fridge today I was practicing making mock-tails with the syrups that take up a portion of the fridge.  I came across a mostly full bottle of Sirop J. M. from the J.M. Rhum company in Martinique. 

To the uninitiated, this is sugar cane syrup produced from a specific A.O.C.  On the back of the colorful label reads the classic recipe for a Ti Punch.  My friend Ed Hamilton, founder of the Ministry of Rum taught me about the Ti Punch.

Ti Punch

1.5 oz. Rhum J.M. Agricole Blanc

.5 oz Rhum J. M. Sirop de Canne and a squeeze of lime.

Ok.  That is the classic Ti Punch. 

In my own way I seek to twist this punch up a bit.  But how?

American Sweet Tea!

The Catoctin Creek although heavily influence by American Whiskey- to my palate, a hit of it tastes like some of the Caribbean rums I've been drinking as of late. 

Why is that?

Perhaps it has to do with the aging barrels?

Many of the Caribbean rums are in fact, aged in used Bourbon casks.  I'm sure some Rye casks also makes the trip from the USA to the Caribbean. 

This would make perfect sense!

In my twisted thoughts, the Moonshine Cate cocktail is named for a hypothetical gal named Cate who ran the Moonshine stills in the dark, humid air of the backwoods in Virginia. 

She was quite a cooker and could run like the wind when the Federal Gov't came a knockin'!

The songs of this region speak tales of hardship and clear to the eye, hard likker. 

Syrop of Canne is Cane syrup.  Could I combine the two, with a squeeze of lime?  Certainly!  That's what gives me a voice in this oft challenging world of cocktail whispering.  I don't just whisper.  I shout.  Are you listening!?!

The Moonshine Cate- Twisted Ti Punch (makes two strong drinks that will make you want to jump up and play the fiddle!)


4 oz Catoctin Creek Rye Whiskey (both USDA Certified Organic AND Kosher!)

1 oz Rhum J.M. Sirop de Canne

1 squirt of Bitter End Bitters (Memphis BBQ)

4 oz of SWEET iced tea

2 Coconut water ice cubes (pour unsweetened Coconut water in an ice cube tray and freeze)

Hunk of lime

Fresh spearmint


To a cocktail shaker add a couple cubes of regular ice

Add a good splash of of the Canne Sirop

Add the Catoctin Creek Rye Whiskey

Add the Sweet Tea

Add the Bitter End Memphis Barbecue Bitters

Shake and strain into a pre-chilled rocks glass.  

Add a couple of cubes of the Coconut water ice

Garnish with a hunk of lime and a sprig of fresh mint

Sip and DANCE!

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