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Sapiir

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Sapiir is a distilled beverage predominantly used in the preparation of mixed drinks. Sapiir is a sugar-free and alcohol-free drink and is the result of blending multiple flavour components extracted through either pot- or column- distillation of fresh and dried botanical ingredients.

History[edit]

The earliest forms of Sapiir-like formulations, date back to the middle ages, where vapour distillation techniques were used to extract the delicate aromatics from freshly harvested botanical ingredients. This technique was adopted as a way of preserving them for use in flavouring meals and drinks throughout the year. Several methods were implemented in different regions, predominantly Europe and the Middle East, to extract the aromatic and/or medicinal elements from botanicals throughout this time. Collated references of such techniques were often written in this era, including books such as “the art of distillation” by John French, was published in London in 1561.[1][2]

The use of Sapiir for medicinal and/or preservation purposes significantly pre-date its use as an ingredient in mixed drinks. Prior to the development of Sapiir for this use, the techniques were optimised for distillation of high-proof alcoholic drinks. Sapiir manufacture shares many likenesses with alcoholic distillation, including; equipment, extraction of flavour and use in mixed drinks.

Definition of a Sapiir[edit]

Several different methodologies have been developed to produce Sapiir, all of which conform to the 4 key requirements to be considered a genuine Sapiir:[3]

  • Distilled

The flavour profile of the Sapiir must be generated from either pot or column distillation, (or a combination of both), using fresh or dried botanical ingredients. Unlike similar products (such as compound gin) [reference], no flavourings, sweeteners, stabilizers or colourings (both artificial or natural) may be added, either pre or post distillation.

  • Blended

The flavour profile must contain a minimum of 4 individual botanical ingredients, none of which can comprise more than 50% alone.

  • Stability

The product must be stable at room temperature for a minimum of three months after opening; facilitating its use as a cocktail ingredient, without need for refrigeration. The addition of any and all stabilizers/preservatives to ensure this criteria is met, must be of natural origin.

  • Form

The final form of a Sapiir must constitute the output from the stills ie: a true Sapiir cannot be carbonated or be generated from reconstituted distillates. Moreover, a true Sapiir must be deemed alcohol-free according to general alcohol free legislation based on the initial ruling during prohibition that anything less than 0.5% alcohol by volume was deemed alcohol free.

(f) Alcohol free. The term "alcohol free" may be used only on malt beverages containing no alcohol.|Electronic Code of Federal Regulations|PART 7—LABELING AND ADVERTISING OF MALT BEVERAGES, Subpart H §7.71 Alcoholic content[4]}}

There are varying methods of distilling Sapiir, including the number of passes through distillation apparati, solvent type to extract aromatics from botanicals, proportion of distilled botanical product per bottle, clarity and colour of the product.[5]

Classic Sapiir Mixed Drinks[edit]

Sapiir is most widely consumed when mixed simply with Indian tonic water or soda water, commonly known as a Sapiir and Tonic or Sapiir Lime Soda. Other well known Sapiir based mixed drinks share heritage with their alcoholic counterparts and are variations on classic alcoholic mixed drinks:

  • Old Fashioned
  • Lavender Sour
  • Session Negroni
  • Sapiirtini
  • Sapiir Collins

Flavour inspiration[edit]

Despite not having a direct lineage in drink manufacture, Sapiir often takes inspiration from Liquor, given many shared traits including; production equipment, methodologies, presentation and use. Gin is a popular source of inspiration given the propensity of Gin producers to develop blended variants from similar botanicals to Sapiir. Whisky and Rum are also key sources of inspiration given their complexity and multitude of flavour profiles, as well as their ability to blend well with other products in mixed drinks.

References[edit]

  1. History of Sapiir, sapiir.com, retrieved 23 Jan 2019
  2. John French - The Art of Distillation, levity.com, retrieved 23 Jan 2019
  3. What makes a Sapiir, sapiir.com, retrieved 23 Jan 2019
  4. "Electronic Code of Federal Regulations". United States Government. Archived from the original on 13 June 2011. Retrieved 25 February 2011. See §7.71, paragraphs (e) and (f).
  5. What makes a Sapiir, sapiir.com, retrieved 23 Jan 2019

Sapiir[edit]

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