Ti' Punch cocktail with lime disc

Ti' Punch

By Timo Torner / Last updated on July 29, 2022 

The Ti' Punch is a famous drink from the French-speaking part of the Caribbean. It's a cocktail made from Rhum Agricole, sugar cane syrup, and lime juice.

The Ti' Punch cocktail is probably the most famous Rhum cocktail. The mixed drink based on Rhum Agricole is very popular in French parts of the Caribbean like Martinique, Guadeloupe, Haiti, French Guiana, and other French-speaking islands.

On some islands like Martinique and Guadeloupe, the Ti' Punch is considered the national cocktail, celebrating one of their most important export goods, Rhum Agricole.

What does Ti' Punch mean?

The name of the Ti' Punch cocktail translates to "small punch". Ti is an abbreviation of the French (and Creole) word petite, which means small. 

Ti' Punch cocktail with ice

In a way, the Ti' Punch is the Rhum equivalent to the famous Cuban Rum cocktail Daiquiri. But compared to the Daiquiri, the Ti' Punch actually uses way less lime juice.

Another related drink is the Caipirinha made with Cachaça, the predecessor of Rum and Rhum, lime juice, and sugar.

How to prepare a Ti' Punch

As the drink's name suggests, the Ti' Punch is quite the punchy beverage.

The main part of the drink is Rhum Agricole at about 50% to 55% ABV. The other two ingredients are a bit of sugar cane syrup and a splash of lime juice.

The resulting cocktail is definitely potent and typically contains between 40% and 45% ABV.

So, to make a Ti' Punch, pour Rhum and sugar syrup into a glass and stir well. Then cut off a disc from one side of a lime - it should contain a bit of flesh.

Now, squeeze the disc with your finger and thumb before dropping it into the drink. That's all you need for a proper Ti' Punch.

Of course, there's the question of ice or no ice. But answering that is a bit more complex for the Ti' Punch, and I will get back to that in a minute.

How to serve a Ti' Punch in the Caribbean

There is a tradition in bars and events called "chacun prépare sa propre mort". This favorite French saying translates to "everyone prepares their own death". 

Related to the Ti' Punch, it means that a bartender or bar provides all assets like Rhum, sugar cane syrup, limes, ice, and glassware. 

Then each guest is left to build their own drink to their liking. - A custom unheard of in bars in other parts of the world.

Ice or no ice in a Ti' Punch

In modern cocktail venues, the Ti' Punch is served on ice like many other mixed drinks. If you order this classic in, let's say, Martinique, you might get a warm cocktail instead.

Traditionalists in the French Caribbean often imbibe a Ti' Punch at room temperature. And if this isn't already sounding bad enough, the temperature in Martinique is above 80°F (26 °C) on average.

Ti' Punch made with Rhum Agricole

The reason for drinking the Ti' Punch warm is the Rhum. -The funky, earthy, and grassy taste of the spirit is even more pronounced when enjoyed warm. In combination with ice, its flavors are more restrained.

The flavors of Rhum are somewhat an acquired taste. If you're new to Rhum, these flavors might be a bit irritating and too much. Therefore serving a Ti' Punch on ice is easier to drink.

However, once you're used to the taste and really begin relishing the flavors, you may want to try your next Ti' Punch without ice.

What is Rhum

Rhum, or Rhum agricole, is a specific subtype of Rum made from fermented sugar cane juice. Its origin is in the French-speaking parts of the Caribbean.

Fresh sugar cane juice - base for Rhum agricole

The taste is much lighter and more grassy, earthy, and vegetal compared to classic Rum.

If you want to learn more about the differences between Rum, read the article about Rum vs. Rhum.

Ti' Punch cocktail with lime disc

Ti' Punch cocktail

A Caribbean cocktail made with Rhum Agricole, sugar cane syrup, and lime.
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Caribbean
Keyword: lime juice, Rhum, sugar cane syrup
Servings: 1
Calories: 119kcal
Cost: $1.80

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 1.5 oz Rhum Agricole
  • 0.25 oz Sugar cane syrup
  • 1 lime disc

Instructions

  • Add Rhum and sugar cane syrup into a glass and stir them well.
  • Press the lime disc with your finger and thumb and drop the disc into the drink.
  • Optional: Add ice and stir once again before drinking.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.9oz | Calories: 119kcal | Carbohydrates: 5.99g | Protein: 0.02g | Fat: 0.01312g | Sodium: 1.54mg | Potassium: 23.91mg | Sugar: 5.59g | Vitamin C: 1.54mg | Calcium: 8.88mg | Iron: 0.06mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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