If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to enjoy a drink in Puerto Rico, consider starting with a glass of Pitorro — Puerto Rican moonshine. Pitorro is a distilled spirit that packs a punch with a unique taste and a memorable mouthfeel. While this liquor is usually homemade from scratch and served at Puerto Rican holiday celebrations, this delicious libation has recently made its way to the United States, allowing curious drinkers to taste what they’ve been missing without hopping on a flight.
Pitorro 101: What You Should Know About Puerto Rican Moonshine
How Is It Made?
Pitorro is made from rum moonshine, which is a raw spirit high in alcohol content made from sugarcane or molasses. Today, distillers often opt to use brown sugar or honey instead. The spirit is then infused with fruit — apples, pineapples, oranges or grapefruit.
As the drink becomes more popular in commercial distilleries, other flavors are starting to be introduced, such as habanero pepper and coffee. Once the mixture is created, it’s barrel-aged to perfection for anywhere between nine months to two years.
What Makes Pitorro Unique?
Pitorro is much stronger than your average rum. In fact, the alcohol content often surpasses the normal range and rounds out at around 80% alcohol, or 160 proof. Those new to the drink often start slow with a small sampling, but after tasting the unique blend of flavors, return for a larger jug. This drink is well-loved and common in Puerto Rico, but the real deal can be nearly impossible to track down in America.
If you’re a resident of the Bronx, NY, and are ready to try your first sip of genuine Pitorro, make your way down to Port Morris Distillery. Opened in 2010, this cozy and inviting tasting room will serve as the perfect atmosphere for all crowds to indulge in a Puerto Rican classic. Visit them online for more information on tastings or give them a call at (718) 585-3192.