Inspired by the underrated 1970’s cocktail, the Beija Flor is Charlie Park bar manager Dalton Bedard’s spin on the Jungle Bird. This approach takes the Malaysian cocktail to South America. Bedard introduces cachaça—a sugarcane spirit similar to rum. He got the idea from his time in Brazil, where he worked and learned from the country’s bartending community.
Beija Flor is Portuguese for hummingbird. Bedard says, “By replacing the rum with cachaça, and then using Campari, I feel like you get a little bit less of that abrasive bitterness and it becomes more well-rounded.”
The rooibos tea syrup’s floral quality blends well with the drink’s assertive notes and makes for a mellow finish. The velvet falernum foam Bedard adds to the drink comes from the Brazilian way to make a moscow mule: The vodka-ginger beer cocktail will likely come topped with a hearty dollop of foam if you order it in that country.
Makes 1 drink
1½ ounces Novo Fogo Chameleon cachaça
¾ ounce cinnamon-clove Campari (recipe follows)
¾ ounce rooibos tea syrup (recipe follows)
⅔ ounce lime juice 2 dashes mole bitters
Velvet falernum foam (see note)
3 cinnamon sticks
4 whole cloves
1 (750-milliliter) bottle Campari
4 cups sugar
2 rooibos tea bags
Rooibos Tea Syrup
Make the Beija Flor
In a cocktail tin filled with ice, combine all ingredients and shake until chilled. Strain into a rocks glass over fresh ice. Top with velvet falernum foam (see note) and grated cinnamon.
Make the cinnamon-clove Campari
In an airtight container, combine all ingredients. Set aside for 24 hours, then strain out solids and return Campari to bottle.
Make the Rooibos Tea Syrup
In a medium pot, combine sugar with 4 cups water and heat until sugar dissolves. Steep rooibos tea bags in simple syrup for 30 minutes, then remove and discard.
Velvet Falernum Foam:
Bedard tops the Beija Flor with a foam made from velvet falernum, a Caribbean liqueur with notes of almond, clove, and lime, which brings a hint of earthiness to the drink. If you have a whipped cream canister at home and want to get crazy, mix up 7 ounces velvet falernum, 4 ounces lime juice, 4 ounces heavy cream, 2 egg whites, and a pinch of xantham gum. Seal, shake well, and double charge with N2O. Shake again before topping your cocktail.