Here’s how you should think of pastis, according to Food Tourist. I love this:
"Pastis is not just a drink, it is the embodiment of a lifestyle - an attitude to life. You don't slam pastis down you sip it, you savour it - you have all the time in the world.
You enjoy pastis sitting on a terrace looking out over ancient ramparts to the vineyards and lavender fields and the distant mountains. You sip pastis under a plane tree while watching men lazily playing pétanque while the breeze from the Mediterranean or from Mont Ventoux rustles the leaves and cools the players from their ever-so-slight exertion.”
The pastis itself is golden colored and flavored with a top secret blend of herbs. Fennel and star anise feature prominently, so that part of the herb blend isn’t a secret. But anise isn't the only flavor in this alcohol – others include slight hints of tonka beans from Brazil, cardamom, cinnamon. The drink has a definite herbal sweetness, although it is not cloying at all.
When the pastis is diluted with water, it changes color from clear golden to opaque white. After a few tries we managed to capture the color change in action!
I became obsessed with pastis after reading many of Peter Mayle’s books on southern France. He seems to spend a lot of his time in the books sitting in sunny cafes, sipping pastis, and contemplating what he’s going to buy from the market and each for lunch. Sign me up!
This is a fun cocktail, perfect for summertime. Or for those with spring fever (me). It is surprisingly refreshing, not too strong, and sweet without being fruity or sugary.
- 1 oz pastis
- 5 oz cold water
- add a few ice cubes after mixing