The Milk Punch Project – Breathe new life into the Yellow Bird

The Milk Punch Project – Breathe new life into the Yellow Bird

Milk clarification is an old cocktail technique made hipster again. A great opportunity to breathe new life into almost forgotten drinks and prepare them for the home bar in larger quantities.

You can find out exactly how to do it in my article “DIY Clarified Milk Punch – Barstalker`s Home Story”. The good news with Milk Punch: you don’t need fancy equipment, you just need what you usually have at home or can easily buy at the corner shop.

But now fresh from my fridge. The milk punch version of the Yellow Bird, a tikilicious Caribbean cocktail. Rum based with a sunny colour and tropical flavours.

The Yellow Bird is believed to date back to the mid-1950s and the name was inspired by the calypso-style song “Yellow Bird” by Norman Luboff and his choir that was played regularly at Shell Bar in The Hawaii Village, a possible birthplace of the cocktail. However, for my Yellow Bird recipe, I used a mix of unaged and aged rum. I used freshly squeezed orange juice and Banane du Brésil and Pineapple of Giffard’s premium liqueur range to sweeten. Giffard`s Banane du Brésil has a great taste and it does not seem artificial in the slightest. No penetrating banana flavour at all. The taste is of fully ripe banana, finely balanced, very aromatic. The liqueur is made by the slow maceration of bananas mostly from Brazil, spirit of bananas for an intense aroma, and enhanced by a hint of Cognac. I also use the liqueur for my Espresso Martinis, but that’s another story.

The original Yellow Bird recipe calls for Galliano, but I swapped it for Strega, which I still had home. Strega is a herbal liqueur invented in Italy by father and son duo Carmine and Giuseppe Alberti in 1860. It is made from approximately 70 different botanicals including cinnamon, white pepper, mint and iris, with a 40% ABV. By the way, Strega means “witch” in Italian.

Here’s the recipe:

160 ml unaged Rum
60 ml  aged Rum
100 ml orange juice
40 ml Strega
50 ml Giffard Premium Liqueur Banane du Brésil & des Caraïbes
30 ml Giffard Premium Liqueur Caribbean Pineapple
30 ml fresh lime
100 ml milk
Pinch of salt

Process: The punch goes into the milk. Resting time ideally 24 hours. Strain several times until it’s clear. Store in a sealed bottle. Served in a beautiful glass bird.

The result was a fruity and tikilicious mix that transferred me straight to a warmer climate. Cheers to all the Milk Punch Lovers out there.