Tropical Highball

Patrick Abalos, Night Shift | Houston

Patrick Abalos, managing partner at Night Shift in Houston, notes that the iSi whipper is ready-made for research and development. In fact, it’s what he used to workshop the Scotch-based Tropical Highball, before scaling it up for the bar’s draft program as part of an early menu. “For R&D at a bar, the iSi whipper is great for single batches,” he explains. To make more than a single serving, see Editor’s Note.


Serving: 1

  • 1 1/2 ounces Scotch, preferably Talisker 10
  • 1 1/2 ounces Scotch, preferably Talisker 10
  • 1 1/4 ounce tropical highball cordial (see Editor's Note)
  • 1 1/4 ounce tropical highball cordial (see Editor's Note)
  • 4 ounces water
  • 4 ounces water

  1. Combine all ingredients in an iSi whipper. Give a stir, then charge with one CO2 cartridge. Shake the canister, then place in an ice bath for 15 minutes.
  2. Remove from ice and purge the whipper (i.e., press the valve to release excess gas). Fill a 10-ounce Collins or highball glass with ice. Unscrew the canister and pour the carbonated cocktail over ice.
  3. Express the lime and orange peels over the glass, then insert on the side of the glass and serve.
Editor's Note

Tropical Highball Cordial
6 grams whole cloves
6 grams whole star anise
8 ounces coconut water
30 grams ginger, peeled and sliced
1 lime, zested
8 grams citric acid
4 grams malic acid
2 grams lactic acid
13 ounces white sugar
3 ounces orgeat
10 grams saline solution (4:1, water:salt)
0.5 gram xanthan gum

In a medium saucepan, toast the clove and star anise until aromatic. Turn off the heat, then add coconut water, ginger, lime zest, acid powders, saline solution and xanthan gum. Bring to a simmer. Add sugar, then stir until dissolved. Return mixture to a rolling simmer, then turn off the heat again. Let it sit for 10 minutes, then strain with a fine-mesh chinois. While warm, stir in the orgeat, then let cool before bottling. (Should keep for upwards of 1 month.)

If using a half-liter iSi whipper, the single serving recipe can be doubled. If using a liter-sized iSi whipper, the recipe can be quadrupled. If making a bigger batch, increase the time in the ice bath to 30 minutes.