Cocktail of the week: Mr Ji’s Compton Libre – recipe

This is a twist on the Cuba libre (AKA rum and coke). The addition of honey falernum and tea makes for a zingy tipple to help ease the transition into spring proper.

Compton Libre
Serves 1

For the spiced rum
175ml rum – we use Ron Colón Salvadoreño high-proof aged rum
1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise
4 cloves

For the honey falernum syrup
30ml stem ginger syrup – a Chinese one, for preference
35g runny honey
35ml lime cordial – we use Rose’s
4 drops almond essence
80ml boiling water

For the drink
30ml spiced rum (see method)
25ml honey falernum syrup (see method)
15ml fresh lime juice
20ml brewed English breakfast tea
30ml Coca-Cola
1 dash soda, to finish
1 lime wheel, to garnish (optional)

First infuse the rum: put everything in a sterilised jar, seal and leave to steep for up to 24 hours. Fine strain to remove any loose bits of spice, then return to the jar and seal.

For the syrup, mix the stem ginger syrup, honey and boiling water in a bowl. Once everything has dissolved, stir in the lime cordial and almond essence, then bottle and refrigerate; it’ll keep for up to four weeks.

To build the drink, fill a tall glass with ice, then pour over the measures of spiced rum, syrup, lime juice and tea. Add the Coke, top with a dash of soda and stir. Finish with more ice, garnish with an optional lime wheel and serve.