“No. 5” might not be the most descriptive name for a beverage, but it’s another exciting addition to my series of reviews of the Curious Elixirs line-up. Here’s a link to the other reviews in case you missed it. I previously reviewed No.’s 1, 3, 4, and 6.
I was surprised to receive No. 5 in a can, but I believe that this was due to a temporary supply chain issue regarding their bottles. Regardless of presentation, the beverage is the same. No. 5 is Curious Elixir’s take on a zero-proof old fashioned. What sets it apart is the complex bouquet of flavors including smoked cherry, chocolate, ginger, and shatavari. I’ll save you the trouble of searching for that last one and provide a link to Wikipedia. It’s a plant that’s in the asparagus family with no scientifically conclusive medicinal properties, but Curious Elixirs adds it to “help you wind down.” Some other ingredients include orange and lemon juice, ginger, chicory, cayenne and American Oak.
I served this cocktail over a large ice cube with a slice of sweet mandarin orange and a sprig of rosemary. What struck me first was just how strong the flavors came across. I tasted a lot of the cherry which had a dark and bitter profile. From there a lot of things happened. I tasted some orange, I tasted some ginger, I tasted a bit of other “spice” which might have been the cayenne. It was complicated! I eventually removed the rosemary sprig because I think that the smell was overpowering some of the other flavors, and I sipped on the cocktail for about 30 minutes while the ice slowly melted. I really enjoyed it, and I think that the dilution from the melting ice improved the flavor rather than harming it.
Out of the group, this was one of my favorites. Not the easiest to drink, but it was unique and bold. For full transparency, I did not pay for this drink. Curious Elixirs sent it to me with a request that I review it on the blog. Also, this ended up being a cocktail just before our Thanksgiving dinner. It paired really nice with the sage and rosemary flavors of the turkey roast that we enjoyed. Check out this spiral: