Allspice dram, also known as pimento dram, is a popular ingredient in the world of cocktails. It is a sweet and spicy liqueur made from allspice berries, rum, and sugar. It is commonly used in cocktails such as the Lion’s Tail and the Jamaican Me Crazy for its warm, spicy, and sweet flavor profile. However, allspice dram can be difficult to find in some regions, and some people may have dietary restrictions that prevent them from using it. In this article, we will explore the 7 best substitutes for allspice dram that can be used in cocktails.
What is Allspice Dram?
Allspice Dram is a liqueur that is named after its main ingredient, the allspice berry. This berry is the fruit of the pimento tree and is also commonly referred to as Jamaican pepper. In fact, the pimento berry is the same one that is used to stuff olives. Allspice berries are harvested and dried, and are a common ingredient in Caribbean, Middle Eastern, and Latin American cuisines.
Allspice dram is made by soaking allspice berries in a rum base and then sweetening the mixture. The process for making allspice dram has remained relatively the same throughout its history. The flavor of allspice dram can be described as a combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove, with an amber color that distinguishes it from other liqueurs. Allspice dram can be stored like other liqueurs and does not need to be refrigerated once opened.
Best Allspice Dram Substitutes
1. Ground Allspice
Ground allspice is a great substitute for allspice dram because it is made from the same spice. Ground allspice has a warm and sweet flavor profile with notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. It can be used in a 1:1 ratio in place of allspice dram.
When using ground allspice, it is important to measure it accurately, as it can be overpowering if used in excess. It is best to start with a small amount and adjust to taste.
2. Cinnamon Syrup
Cinnamon syrup is another great substitute for allspice dram. It has a warm and sweet flavor profile that can add a similar complexity to cocktails. To make cinnamon syrup, simmer equal parts water and sugar with cinnamon sticks until the sugar dissolves.
Remove from heat and let the cinnamon sticks steep in the syrup for at least 30 minutes before straining. Cinnamon syrup can also be used to sweeten cocktails in place of simple syrup.
3. Vanilla Extract
Vanilla extract is a versatile ingredient that can be used as a substitute for allspice dram. While it does not have the same warm and spicy flavor profile as allspice, it can add a similar depth and sweetness to cocktails.
To use vanilla extract as a substitute for allspice dram, add a small amount (1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon) to the cocktail in place of allspice dram. It is important to note that vanilla extract can be overpowering if used in excess, so it is best to start with a small amount and adjust to taste.
Cloves are a warm and spicy spice that can be used as a substitute for allspice dram. When using cloves as a substitute, it is important to use whole cloves and not ground cloves. Whole cloves can be added directly to the cocktail and strained out before serving. Ground cloves can be overpowering and can make the cocktail gritty.
5. Spiced Syrup
Spiced syrup is a great substitute for allspice dram because it contains a variety of warm and spicy spices. To make spiced syrup, simmer equal parts water and sugar with cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, and allspice berries until the sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and let the spices steep in the syrup for at least 30 minutes before straining.
6. Pimento Berries
Pimento berries are the main ingredient in allspice dram, so they make a great substitute when allspice dram is not available. Pimento berries have a warm and spicy flavor profile with notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves.
To use pimento berries as a substitute, muddle a few berries in the bottom of the cocktail shaker before adding the other ingredients. Pimento berries can also be used to infuse spirits and syrups with their warm and spicy flavor.
7. Pumpkin Spice Syrup
Pumpkin spice syrup is a great substitute for Allspice Dram, especially for fall and winter-themed cocktails. It contains a blend of warm spices including cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and allspice, which makes it a perfect replacement for Allspice Dram.
To make pumpkin spice syrup, combine equal parts water and sugar in a saucepan and stir until the sugar dissolves. Add cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, nutmeg, ginger, and allspice berries to the mixture and bring to a simmer. Let the mixture simmer for 10-15 minutes until the spices infuse into the syrup. Strain the syrup and let it cool before using.
Allspice dram is a popular ingredient in the world of cocktails, but it can be difficult to find in some regions, and some people may have dietary restrictions that prevent them from using it. The 7 substitutes listed above are versatile ingredients that can be used to replace allspice dram in cocktails.
Whether you choose to use ground allspice, cinnamon syrup, pumpkin spice syrup, vanilla extract, cloves, spiced syrup, or pimento berries, you can create delicious cocktails with a warm and spicy flavor profile.