Arrack, a Sri Lanka alcoholic ambrosia made from distilled coconut nectar is ‘a truly luscious tipple’

 

A young Indian woman’s love affair with arrack, Sri Lanka’s favourite home-grown alcoholic tipple, is described in LiveMint, a leading business news websites.

Writes Prerna Singh Bindra: “It was a luscious tipple, downed in a lovely old colonial club, accompanied by poppadums, salt in the air, and the sound of the sea.

“Its aroma was heavenly, and the nutty, malty drink with its hint of coconut took me back to balmy evenings on an island I had only had a brief affair with, yet made memories that linger on—aided by the arrack.”

 

Arrack is made from the distilled nectar of the coconut flower, and is collected by intrepid ‘tappers’ who move from tree-to-tree on flimsy rope bridges.

Says Prerna: “The toddy tapper shimmies up a tree, rappelling and walking on a tightrope from tree to tree to fill the clay pot tied to his waist with a rope.

“What emerges is a divine liquor. I am no connoisseur, but the ambrosia flowed smooth as I had my first taste seated in the lush garden of a B&B in Galle.”

 

The raw, undistilled toddy is a condiment in coastal kitchens, and a sweet, refreshing protein drink relished by children.

Once the toddy ferments naturally, it is filtered and double distilled within hours of tapping.

Then, it is stored in vats made of halmilla, a local hardwood. From time to time, the arrack may be mixed with spices and herbs to enhance the flavour and mellow the liquor as it ages.

Read more here.

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