From Fast Flavours, 2012

This cocktail evolved as a homage to my all-time favourite treat, a freshly popped can of chilly root beer. The bar chef's goal is thus to craft a licorice-inspired cocktail by respectfully splashing in a few complementary root flavours. Bitters are prized for their healing properties, brewed and distilled from a powerful combination of nature's flavours and roots.

Yield: Crafts 4 Frosty Mugs


4 ounces (120 mL) of Pernod, pastis, ouzo, anisette, or sambuca
1 teaspoon (5 mL) of vanilla
1 teaspoon (5 mL) of Peychaud’s or your favourite bitters
4 tablespoons (60 mL) of grated frozen ginger
4 cans or bottles of local artisanal root beer


Fill 4 frosty frozen mugs with lots of ice. Divide the Pernod, vanilla, and bitters among the glasses. Top each pile of fragrant ice with a pile of grated ginger. Fill each glass with freshly popped root beer. Stir, sip, savour, and share with a flourish.

© Chef Michael Smith, Fast Flavours, 2012


On Prince Edward Island we are blessed with many artisan food crafters, including one of my favourites, the folks at J.J. Stewart’s ( They crave authentic flavours as much as I do.