Kelvin Uffre has garnered a unique appreciation for the Ramos gin fizz over the years. From some time spent in New Orleans to tending bar at Maison Premiere, Uffre, the head bartender at The Eddy (342 East 6th Street; 646-895-9884), doesn’t mind the often laborious process it can take to create the drink. In fact, he loved it so much he decided to add an extra step: a version flavored with Fruity Pebbles, dubbed the Bedrock Fizz. “One day, I was eating Fruity Pebbles and drinking an Aperol spritzer. I started mixing a lot, and thought, this is kind of incredible,” Uffre tells the Voice. The bartender is so enamored with the drink, he’ll even include a teacup of another favorite cocktail, the seventh regiment punch, on the house, because the time it takes to make one drink equals about half a Flintstones episode.
“There’s so many cocktail bars out there, so it’s really important for us to distinguish our voice, especially for me. I don’t really carry much of what other folks do, just because I want to stand out in this little ship that I have,” Uffre says. Part of that is knowing how to have fun, and the Bedrock Fizz certainly qualifies as a fun drink, considering it’s ideal for day-drinking and overcoming hangovers. “The Ramos gin fizz was a classic hangover drink. All fizzes and sours were classified ‘eye-openers,’ because back in the day, we drank a lot. Eye-openers were a necessity.”
However, now that moderate drinking is the preferred status quo for most folks — college students excluded — the main appeal of a drink these days comes down to taste, texture, and presentation. This drink has low alcohol by volume, so it’s ideal to help people feel full, and its color and Fruity Pebbles topping is a conversation starter. However, what’s really unique about the drink is the reaction your mouth has when it’s placed in front of you. “How many opportunities do you get to bite into a drink and have a crisp meringue crunch?” Uffre asks.
Uffre also uses gum arabic (powdered gum) in the cocktail, which produces a satiny feel. “A silky mouthfeel is just seductive; it makes you want to go for more. That’s why we love crispies and Pop Rocks and things that stimulate our senses in the mouth. It becomes an experience as opposed to a drink. Even my old-fashioneds have a buttery mouthfeel because of the gum arabic, and that’s important. Otherwise, if it waters down too much, it’s just sugar and whiskey.”
Whatever your motivation to try the Bedrock Fizz, Uffre recommends drinking it in about the time it took Fred to slide down the brontosaurus at the old Slate Rock and Gravel Company — quickly and without fear.
Bedrock Fizz by Kelvin Uffre
1 1/4 ounces Fruity Pebbles–infused Aperol*
3/4 ounce Greenhook Old Tom Gin
3/4 ounce cream
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
1/2 ounce fresh grapefruit juice
1/2 ounce 2:1 gum arabic syrup**
1 egg white
Dry-shake all ingredients in a shaker (dry-shake means no ice). This technique will emulsify the contents and aerate the egg and cream. Add an ounce of crushed ice or a single one-by-one-inch ice cube to the shaker and shake until the ice melts. Pour contents into a collins glass, then pour seltzer water into glass to reach the rim. Place in a blast chiller or freezer for 4 minutes. Poke a hole in the center of cocktail and pour more seltzer into it until the meringue rises. Pour gently to avoid overflow.
*To make the infusion, add Fruity Pebbles to Aperol and let the mixture sit for 15 minutes. Afterwards, strain out the cereal with a cheesecloth.
** To make the gum arabic syrup:
2 parts sugar to 1 part water
Add 2 tablespoons gum arabic
Bring contents to a boil and stir constantly. Cook for 50 minutes on high heat while stirring.
Not all gum arabic powder will dissolve, so strain the residual out. Cool and refrigerate.