The Story Behind The False Alarm

When Ivy Mix, author of “Spirits of Latin America,” lived in Peru while attending college, she became fond of a “bright red, sweet cola called Kola Inglesa” mixed with the South American grape spirit pisco. The soda, popular among college students, was described by Mix as a “sugary hangover delight.” Years laters, Mix created the False Alarm, a more sophisticated rendition of the Kola Inglesa and pisco combination, as a nod to her time spent in Peru.

Starting with the Peruvian pisco Capurro Quebranta as a base, Mix adds Campari, lemon juice, and raspberry syrup. The ingredients are served in a wine glass and topped with a brut Champagne.

As Mix notes in her book, “It really only resembles the Kola Inglesa in its red appearance, as the bitterness of the Campari gives it a different flavor altogether: fresher and more nuanced.” The resulting cocktail is “floral [and] bright with bursting bubbles,” easy to replicate, and perfect for any occasion.


  • 1 ounce Capurro Quebranta Peruvian Pisco
  • ½ ounce lemon juice
  • ½ ounce raspberry syrup (recipe follows)
  • ¼ ounce Campari
  • 2 ounces brut Champagne
  • 3 raspberries


  1. Add all the ingredients, except the Champagne and the raspberries, to a cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Shake and fine-strain into a wine glass with fresh ice.
  3. Top up with the Champagne and garnish with the raspberries.

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Updated: 2020-05-15

Raspberry Syrup Ingredients

  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup water

Raspberry Syrup Directions

  1. Place the ingredients in a blender and blend on high speed until the contents are well integrated.
  2. Pour through a chinois strainer to remove solids and transfer to an airtight container.
  3. Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
The False Alarm Recipe