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Today's drink hails from New York – Egg Cream.
What is it?
A sweet, creamy cross between milkshake and soda, the egg cream contains neither eggs nor cream, making this time-honored classic associated with Old New York as misleading as it is delicious.
The original 19th-century egg cream may have contained an egg, but a more likely explanation for the misleading name is that “egg” is a corruption of echt (Yiddish for “genuine”), and that early sellers of this soda-fountain concoction were advertising “a genuine cream soda”. What all egg cream lovers can agree on is that the drink is as genuinely a part of New York City as Central Park or the Brooklyn Bridge.
You'll need (Serves 1)
2fl oz (60ml) whole milk
4fl oz (120ml) soda water, chilled
Chocolate syrup (Fox’s U-Bet, if you can get it)
Step 1: Fill a bell-shaped 8oz glass ¼ full with milk.
Step 2: Add cold soda water, leaving about an inch of space at the top of the glass.
Step 3: Using a long handled spoon, stir in the chocolate syrup to taste. The stirring should mix the milk, soda and syrup, creating a creamy foam head thick enough for a straw to stand straight up.
Step 4: Enjoy! Life is short, and a genuine egg cream’s fizz won’t last long!
New Yorkers are known for being particular, and the difference between a perfect and imperfect egg cream is best manifested in the creamy foam head (or lack thereof), inside of which there should be wispy traces of syrup. The best way to maximize the head is to serve the egg cream in a bell-shaped glass, with a wider top than bottom. The head should be thick enough to hold your straw straight up. As for syrup, chocolate and vanilla are the only echt choices.
Purists, however, insist that vanilla is too posh a flavour for the beverage’s working class roots, and that a true Brooklyn-ite wouldn’t be caught dead drinking anything other than chocolate. Fistfights have broken out over the “true way” to make an egg cream, with the main division concerning the syrup-adding stage. We’ve gone with the “syrup last” method.
For additional cocktail recipes, check out our Destination Drinks page.