While the vast majority of cocktails are served cold—either chilled in a shaker or served over ice—warm drinks like the Hot Toddy aren’t uncommon. In fact, a Toddy is often considered to be a consummate treatment for a cold. The other popular treatment for a cold is, of course, chicken soup, especially when it’s served with a bit of hot sauce. Historically, Gin & Juice has not been commonly used to treat a cold, but bartender Christy Pope of Cuffs & Buttons and Dallas’ Midnight Rambler turns it into a Hot Toddy and mixes it with sweet and sour chicken soup in this unconventional drink. While deeply odd on paper, the Sweet & Sour Chicken Toddy will turn your sick day into a party in the best way possible.
Pope’s original recipe for the chicken-based hot cocktail calls for Swanson organic free-range chicken broth—shoppers can find this ubiquitous product on grocery store shelves almost anywhere. However, if you’re really dedicated to making this unusual drink, using a homemade chicken stock will invariably lead to better tasting results. It also means you can better control the flavor profile, like making it more or less salty or adjusting specific ingredients to better pair with gin and pineapple—adding extra ginger would work well, for instance.
Rather than pineapple juice, Pope adds pineapple syrup, which can also be used in drinks like the Point Reyes Punch and the Mrs. Robinson. Lime juice adds its signature tartness and a dash of Sriracha (or other hot sauce if you desire) adds a restorative heat. Pope also makes a point to heat each of the ingredients on the stove besides the gin, adding the spirit only after everything else comes up to temperature to avoid cooking off the alcohol.
- 3 ounces Swanson organic free-range chicken broth
- 3/4 ounce pineapple syrup*
- 3/4 ounce lime juice, freshly squeezed
- 1 dash Sriracha
- 1 1/2 ounces Beefeater gin
- Garnish: star anise pod
In a small pot on the stove, combine the chicken broth, pineapple syrup, lime juice and Sriracha over medium heat.
Once the liquid starts to steam, remove from heat and add the gin.
Pour the heated cocktail into a Toddy glass.
Garnish with a star anise pod.
*Pineapple syrup: Peel and core 1 whole pineapple, then cut the meat into chunks. Add 1 cup white sugar, toss to coat in a glass bowl and store, covered, in the refrigerator overnight. Combine 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water in a saucepan, simmer until the sugar is dissolved, and remove from the heat. Blend the macerated pineapple in a blender, add the simple syrup, and stir to combine. Strain out solids using a cheesecloth, and store the syrup in the refrigerator.