Kuzcotopia

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Cocktail History

The Kuzcotopia is a Pisco-based tiki cocktail that was created by us as our entry into Liber & Co.‘s Disney cocktail contest hosted in August 2021.

When designing our drink for the competition, we started with passion fruit (our favorite Liber & Co. syrup) and turned to an animated Disney favorite of ours that also originated in South America for inspiration—The Emperor’s New Groove. To keep our recipe accurate to the movie’s setting, we paired the tangy syrup with a few more ingredients native to the continent: fruit juices, chili pepper, and, of course, Pisco. We also added a bit of Aperol for a deliciously bitter bite plus a hint of color to shift its hue closer to that of Kuzco’s vacation home. 

Cocktail Ingredients

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Pisco: This is the base spirit. It’s a type of brandy native to Peru and Chile. We used Capel Pisco Premium Liqueur.

Aperol: This is a bitter Italian apéritif. It adds notes of gentian, rhubarb, and cinchona.

Passion Fruit Syrup: This is a sweetener that also adds passion fruit flavor. We used Liber & Co. Tropical Passion Fruit Syrup for its tangy and lush taste.

Grapefruit Juice: This adds tangy grapefruit flavor that balances out the spicy ingredients. We used fresh grapefruit juice because has better flavor.

Lime Juice: This adds sour citrus flavors for balance. We prefer to use fresh citrus juice because it’s less bitter than the bottled stuff and tastes better.

Pepper Bitters: This is a type of spirit infused with hot peppers and botanicals. They add spiciness to the drink for more complexity. We used Infuse Bitters Tres Amigos Bitters for their hot habanero, Thai chili, and Puya pepper flavor.

Lime Slice: This is the garnish. It adds fresh lime aroma and flavor when expressed into the drink.

Tasting Notes

The Kuzcotopia tastes like the paradise for which it’s named. It has a fruity scent, a very passion fruit-forward initial taste that evolves into grapefruit as it sits in the mouth, and the strong aftertaste of Aperol and citrus bitterness combined with passion fruit sweetness. And for the grand finale, it leaves a hint of chili spice on the tongue that almost makes you wonder if it’s poisoned… 

Our Opinion of This Cocktail Recipe: Even if you’re not a huge fan of the Mouse, this cocktail is absolutely delicious—a combination of flavors that are contemplative and complex yet very easy going down. We both think it would make Kuzco himself say, “Bring it on.”

Alex’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
“When coming up with this drink, I worked really hard to mix the ingredients of South America, as that’s where Kuzco and the rest of the Incan civilization lived. Naturally I turned to Pisco for the base, the spicy flavors of chili, citrus, and, of course, passion fruit. The Aperol was an added touch for some color, as well as to give the drink a slight ‘poisoned’ bitterness, and it really shines through as an important ingredient. The passion fruit is easily the most prominent flavor, giving the drink its bright sweetness, and Liber & Co.’s ingredient is what spurred me to create this recipe in the first place.”

Kendall’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
“I know we created this for a Disney-themed cocktail contest, which usually result in pretty kitschy recipes… but this drink is so, so, so tasty. The passion fruit syrup mixed with fresh citrus and Pisco make for a great trio. Add in the tongue-tingling heat from the chili pepper bitters, and it becomes chef’s kiss I could see this on a bar menu somewhere in South America for sure, with locals and tourists alike sucking down one after another.”

Recipe

AuthorSips From ScriptsPrep Time5 minsRating

Ingredients
 2 oz Pisco
 ½ oz Aperol
 ½ oz Grapefruit Juice
 ½ oz Lime Juice
 1 Lime Slice

Method
1

Add Pisco, Aperol, passion fruit syrup, grapefruit juice, lime juice, and ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Strain into a tiki glass or cocktail glass.

4

Garnish with lime slice.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 2 oz Pisco
 ½ oz Aperol
 ½ oz Grapefruit Juice
 ½ oz Lime Juice
 1 Lime Slice

Directions

Method
1

Add Pisco, Aperol, passion fruit syrup, grapefruit juice, lime juice, and ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Strain into a tiki glass or cocktail glass.

4

Garnish with lime slice.

Kuzcotopia

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More Tiki Cocktails

If you like this tiki cocktail recipe, here are a few others we’ve tried that you may enjoy:

Zombie: A rum cocktail made with velvet falernum liqueur, Donn’s mix, lime juice, absinthe, grenadine, Angostura aromatic bitters, and mint

Ginger Inferno: A rum cocktail made with ginger liqueur, velvet falernum liqueur, lime juice, lemon juice, cinnamon syrup, a lime slice, and candied ginger

Greena Colada: A rum cocktail made with triple sec, lime juice, lemon juice, Green Chartreuse, velvet falernum liqueur, crème of coconut, mint, and a lime wheel

Fog Cutter: A rum, brandy, gin, and sherry cocktail made with triple sec, lemon juice, orgeat syrup, an orange peel, mint, and an orchid blossom

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