Chef's Recipes

Grant Achatz's macieira

Surprise your guests with this hot cocktail that pairs perfectly with black cake. It's a welcome end to a celebratory meal.

By Grant Achatz
  • Serves 8
  • 10 mins preparation
  • 1 min cooking plus cooling
Grant Achatz's macieira

"Overwhelmingly, when people think of a cocktail they assume it will be cold. Most people, however, finish a meal with a hot drink like coffee or tea," says Achatz. "In this after-dinner drink we combine the two assumptions and make a hot cocktail. The Madeira and whisky flavours pair perfectly with the brown spices and roasted banana of the black cake, while the crème de violette, lemon and fruity apple make it a welcome end to a celebratory meal."


  • 100 ml rainwater Madeira (see note)
  • 100 ml Laird's Applejack apple brandy (see note)
  • 50 ml Nikka Japanese whisky (see note)
  • 50 ml Averna amaro (see note)
  • 10 ml crème de violette (see note)
  • Thinly peeled rind of 2 lemons
Madeira syrup
  • 60 gm white sugar
  • 35 ml rainwater Madeira


  • 1
    For Madeira syrup, bring sugar and 20ml water to the boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, add Madeira and chill over an ice bath.
  • 2
    Bring ingredients, except lemon rind, 50ml Madeira syrup and 125ml water to a simmer in a saucepan, then pour into a teapot. Twist a piece of rind over each of 8 teacups, dropping rind in, pour in cocktail and serve.


Rainwater Madeira is a lighter style of a Madeira; Achatz uses Blandy's. Laird's Applejack, Nikka Japanese whisky and crème de violette are all available from Dan Murphy's bottle shops. Averna amaro is a bitter Italian liqueur available from select bottle shops. If it's unavailable, substitute another amaro.

  • Author: Grant Achatz