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Pisco Punch

During the Gold Rush, before the Panama Canal was constructed, voyagers to the West Coast sailed around Cape Horn, picking up pisco (Peruvian brandy) on their way. The cocktail itself was invented in San Francisco. "Before we started serving it, nobody in Lima knew about pisco punch; now everybody has it on their menus," says Schiaffino.


slideshow  More Drinks for a Crowd


  • Total Time:
  • Servings: Makes 12 drinks

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  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • One 3-pound ripe pineapple—peeled, cored and cut into 1/4-inch pieces (6 cups)
  • 2 1/4 cups (18 ounces) pisco
  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (about 8 limes)
  • Ice
  • 12 maraschino cherries, for garnish


  1. In a large saucepan, combine the water and sugar and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Add the pineapple, cover and remove from the heat. Let cool to room temperature, then transfer to a punch bowl. Refrigerate overnight.
  2. Add the pisco and lime juice to the pineapple syrup. Fill tall glasses with ice and ladle in the punch. Garnish each drink with a cherry and serve.

Make Ahead

The pineapple syrup can be refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Contributed By Published July 2011

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