Owing its name to the Norwegian viking Erik the Red who started the adventurous journey across the Atlantic, this cocktail binds together the Nordic countries with the Americas. Erik the Red is known for having founded the first Norse settlement in Greenland. His son Leif Erikson is regarded as the first European to land in North America nearly 500 years before Christopher Columbus. According to the Sagas of Icelanders, he established a Norse settlement on the northern tip of Newfoundland in modern-day Canada.
The drink was served as a signature cocktail for the 61st Annual Convention for the Brittingham Viking Organization (an American-Scandinavian exchange organization) with ingredients representing the five participating countries.
3 cl Bourbon
2 cl Linie Aquavit
3 cl Akacia Honey
3 cl lemon juice
½ tsp good quality raw liquorice powder
Mix the honey with sugar syrup 2:1 to make it pourable. Muddle the raspberries with the liquorice powder. Shake hard and serve on the rocks. Garnish with a liquorice pipe or a lemon peel on a skewer serving as a sail for Erik.
The cocktail was designed with ingredients associated with the countries the convention quests were representing:
Makers Mark Bourbon for the US This Iconic straight Kentucky Bourbon aged in new American oak casks before they get shipped to Europe to be used for scotch production form the smooth backbone of the cocktail.
Linie Aquavit for Norway This particular aquavit has been aged at sea. It has literally been sailed to the other side of the world and back again leveraging the constant rolling of the waves and changing wheather conditions for the maturation process in oak sherry casks. A perfect fit for this trans-atlantic cocktail.
Raspberries for Sweden’Hallon’ or Raspberries are plentiful in Sweden and the Swedes are fond of mixing them with liquorice in ice cream, which makes a wonderful combination. They put the red in Erik the Red.
Liquorice for Finland No one likes liquorice more than the Finns. The raw liquorice brings salt to the mix, adds the ’raging sea foam’ for Erik to tame when shaken and blends well with the raspberries, the spicy notes in the aquavit and brings forth the subtle licorice notes and supplement the vanilla notes in the bourbon.
Honey for Denmark Denmark has a rich production of honey with a population of approx. 6 billion honey bees. This natural sweetener ties the bourbon and aquavit together and blends extra ordinarily well with the spices of the Linie aquavit.
Lemon adds sour to the mix and can also provide a sail for Erik if you garnish the cocktail with a lemon peel on a skewer.
Helan går – Enjoy!
If you like cocktails with liquorice try the Unfaithful by Humberto Marques from Curfew.
Erik the Red is featured on Cocktails of Copenhagen with permission from the Brittingham Viking Organization. As far as we know is not yet on any menu in Copenhagen, so to try it out you’ll have to shake it up yourself. It will be worth the sweat!