Milk Punch



  • 10½ oz. Fresh Lemon Juice (divided)
  • Peel of 8 Lemons (just the yellow portion)
  • 24 oz. Pineapple Juice
  • 1 lb. Granulated Sugar
  • 6 Cloves
  • 30 Coriander seeds
  • 3 Allspice Berries
  • 1 Star Anise
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick
  • 20 oz. Calvados
  • 10 oz. Overproof Rum (~125 proof)
  • 5 oz. Dark Rum
  • 5 oz. Aged Rum
  • 5 oz. Absinthe
  • 12 oz. strong Rooibos & Lavender Tea*
  • 5 cups boiling Water
  • 5 cups Whole Milk (heated to 185 degrees)
  • *3 Tbsp. Rooibos Tea and 1 Tbsp. dried Lavender Flowers in 12 oz. boiling water.

  • Grind the spices in a spice grinder. In a large bowl, add the lemon peel, sugar, spices, cinnamon stick, tea, and boiling water. Stir to dissolve the sugar and allow to cool for 20 minutes. Add 8 oz. of lemon juice, the pineapple juice, and liquors. Stir, cover, and let infuse for 48 hours before adding 2½ of lemon juice and the scalded milk. Stir the curdled solution and strain into clean bottles through a fine (90 grade) cheese cloth followed by coffee filters. (If milk solids reform in the bottle, re-filter or allow them to settle and decant.) Chill and serve over ice. Garnish with grated nutmeg. Yields about 4½ liters.

Dainty, elegant, and amazingly complex, with bright notes of apple and cinnamon, a pleasant and subdued tartness with hints of flowers and pear, this Milk Punch is unworldly! Punch (alcohol of any kind, spices of any kind, citrus, and sugar) was popular in 17th and 18th century England. It was a drink of the wealthy as it required, not only spices, but citrus, which was prized at the time. It either originated in England or came from India sometime after the British East India Company opened up its outpost there and began trading in spices. The whey, left after removing the curdled milk, brings the alcohol and tart citrus into perfect harmony. Based on Michael Mooney’s recipe (while at Geraldine’s in Toronto), this centuries-old concoction, though time consuming, is one of the most incredible things in all of cocktaildom. Truly! Enjoy!


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