As delicious as cocktails are to drink, it’s an unfortunate reality that making cocktails creates waste. After a night at a busy bar, all the juiced citrus husks, leftover fruit pulp and herb stems can really add up, so enterprising bartenders have been finding creative ways to repurpose ingredients that are ordinarily thrown away.
Kim Stodel, the bar director at Providence in Los Angeles, has been integral in reducing waste at the bar. One example can be found in her Manu de Chango cocktail, which is like a cross between a Margarita and a Paloma. It’s made with tequila, dry curaçao, guava, lime juice and grapefruit juice. Stodel chooses Angelisco blanco tequila, a single-estate tequila that’s produced in the highlands of Jalisco. But if you’re unable to source this brand, another high-quality blanco will get the job done.
To get the most out of the ingredients, Stodel eschews bottled guava and instead makes her own guava syrup—a process that results in a lot of guava pulp. Rather than throwing all that pulp away, she finds a use for it, making it into a fruit leather garnish to put the finishing touch on the drink. The fruit leather is surprisingly easy to make, and it not only provides a good garnish for the cocktail, but it also makes a tasty snack.
- 1 1/2 ounces Angelisco blanco tequila
- 1/2 ounce Pierre Ferrand dry curaçao
- 1 ounce grapefruit juice, freshly squeezed
- 3/4 ounce guava syrup*
- 1/2 ounce lime juice, freshly squeezed
- Garnish: guava fruit leather**
Add all the ingredients into a shaker with ice.
Shake until well-chilled, and double-strain into a cocktail glass.
Garnish with guava fruit leather.
*Guava syrup: Slice 1 1/4 cup guava and macerate with 1 1/4 cup sugar and 3/4 cup water, mixing occasionally until the sugar is dissolved. Refrigerate the mixture until ready to strain. (Ideally, this can be done 1 day in advance and left overnight in the fridge.) Strain the syrup from the pulp, keeping the pulp for garnish if you wish.
**Guava fruit leather: Take the discarded guava pulp, and mix in a blender until smooth. Pour mixture through a large sieve and spread over a piece of parchment paper to make an even layer. Place on a sheet pan in an oven set at 135 degrees F for about 6 hours, checking periodically to prevent over-drying. Remove and cut into 1 x 2 inch slices.