Four years ago, the idea of chickpea brine having any place on a cocktail menu would seem ridiculous. But at this year’s 15th annual Tales of the Cocktail conference in New Orleans, LA, that viscous liquid was listed among the top eight cocktail trends. Interestingly, Aquafaba is literally just bean water—the thick liquid that you’re left with after soaking or cooking legumes.
Software engineer Goose Wohlt put aquafaba on the map in 2015 when he, a new vegan, was trying to figure out how to make meringues for his family’s Seder. His wife mentioned a video she’d seen online of French cooks using liquid from a can of chickpeas to stiffen up a vegan chocolate mousse. Wohlt checked it out, played around with the liquid a bit, figured out the meringue, and posted information on the results to the Facebook group “What Fat Vegans Eat.”
The rest? History. The miraculous bean brine has taken the world by storm, with aquafaba Facebook groups, Instagram feeds, vegan cookbooks, and now cocktails prominently featuring this superfood at work.
Aquafaba behaves exactly like an egg white in recipes and cocktails.
The Tales of the Cocktail conference is the largest event for professionals in the alcohol industry. This year’s event drew 15,000 guests, including bartenders and spirits reps. At the event, industry pros sized up the year’s biggest cocktail trends.
Aquafaba made it into the top eight. Whether or not you consume eggs in general, for a lot of people the idea of egg whites in your cocktails seems a little off-putting.
“It [Aquafaba] does the same thing as an egg white, but it doesn't make people turn up their nose," Jennifer Contraveos, brand ambassador for liquor brand Bacardi USA, told VegNews. "It emulsifies and provides viscosity. And it's vegan.”
Try this: easy aquafaba whiskey sour.
Want to give aquafaba a whirl? Check out this easy aquafaba whiskey sour, courtesy of Tales of the Cocktail.
- 3/4 oz. simple syrup (1:1)
- 3/4 oz. fresh lemon juice
- 2 oz. bourbon
- 1 oz. Aquafaba (chickpea liquid)
Directions Add all of the ingredients to a large shaker. Dry-shake the mix (no ice) for 12 seconds. Add ice, and shake for another 12 seconds. Remove the ice and strain the mixture from one half shaker to the other. Using the long pour, pour the vegan sour mix back and forth three times. Strain the mix into a frosted glass of choice and top with bitters.
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