Category: cinnamon
Rule 2
Tiki Month 2018

Tiki Drink: Monkey Pilot

The Monkey Pilot is a quite new Tiki cocktail, as in last month new, from Fred Yarm of Cocktail Virgin Fame. Fred has begun to present a problem for me the last year or so of Tiki Month. The chance of re-blogging someone else's drink can be expressed in the following formula: Chance = Frequency of Posting X Percentage of Posts about Tiki Drinks. If you plug in the values for the Cocktail Virgin Blog, you get: Chance = Yarm's Work Ethic X Fred's Increasing Interest in Tiki. Chance is a big number, folks. Any way, I'm leaning into the issue by choosing the Monkey Pilot today. Not only did Fred blog it, he created it. If you want to learn about his development process and the drink's ancestry, click the link. I was wasting time on Twitter today, and saw Fred mention his recent post on the Monkey Pilot. To which my friend Jordan (@Cocktailchem) felt the need to poke the official illustrator of the Cocktailosphere... It is time to convince Craig to do this, so please RT this tweet, if you are unfortunate enough to suffer from TwitterAccountosis, and maybe we'll shame Doctor Bamboo into drawing some monkeys. Now, I already had Fred's Monkey Pilot recipe sitting downstairs in my Basement Bar, waiting for me to make cinnamon syrup. The exchange got me off of my computer and into the kitchen. This evening, first on agenda was this drink. It's lovely. A truly traditional Tiki drink, in all the best ways.
  • 1 oz dark Jamaican rum (I used Blackwell's)
  • 1 oz London Dry gin
  • 1 oz orange juice
  • 1/4 oz grenadine (I used POM Wonderful straight)
  • 3/4 oz lime juice
  • 1/2 oz Velvet falernum
  • 1/2 oz cinnamon syrup
  • 7 drops absinthe
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters
Combine in a shaker with ice and put your monkey shoulder into it. Open pour into a whimsical mug and top with crushed ice. I for one am always one to follow garnish instructions like Fred's, "garnish with Tiki intent." I went with a lime wheel, homme-made brandied cherry, and a custom engraved orange zest.
As I said, this is a classic Tiki-profile cocktail. The aroma is exotically redolent. As you first draw on the straw, it feels but doesn't quite taste sweet. There is quite a bit of acidity, even into the finish. But the finish is mostly aromatics from absinthe, gin, and cinnamon, all of which linger beautifully. It is refreshing, but in no way thirst-quenching, leaving the drinker wanting something else to sip immediately after. If you were serving it in a commercial establishment, I think that would make Donn Beach smile. abc
Rule 2
Tiki Month 2013

A Tiki Original from Measure & Stir: I Should Buy a Boat

One thing I hope to do this year's Tiki Month is find some good modern original Tiki drinks to try and to feature here. Lo and behold, I wake up first thing the morning of Day One to a Tweet from @Dagreb of Nihil Utopia, alerting my to the I Should Buy a Boat, an original by Joe at Measure & Stir. If all you people are so Johnny on the Spot with the Tiki tips, this Tiki Month will go smoothly for all of us! The "I Should Buy a Boat" from Measure & Stir Above is a picture of Joe's concoction. You need to click through to his site for more, larger pictures, as well as his exact recipe, and why his proportions are as they are. He unaccountably fails to mention in his discussion that this is a Tiki drink, but with rum, grapefruit and exotic spice syrup, I declare it so. In his post on the original version he did note that its spiritual godfather is Don the Beachcomber, though. The presentation, though certainly beautiful and elaborate enough to be Tiki, isn't what I'm looking to do this time of year, so when I took my shot at it, I went with crushed ice and curled the grapefruit slice into a flower with mint stamens. Also, I used equal parts vanilla syrup and cinnamon syrup, rather than Joe's combined syrup. Frankly, it is still too much sweet, but the ice cuts things a lot. The challenge is to use the minimum of the syrup needed to still deliver the spice flavors. This is the best round I came up with:
I Should Buy a Boat Cocktail
Fez found at FezMonger
I SHOULD BUY A BOAT (My version)
  • 1.5 oz. dark rum (He suggests Doorly's. I used Chairman's Reserve)
  • 1 oz. red grapefruit juice
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon syrup
  • 1 tsp. vanilla syrup
  • crushed ice
  • 1 1/2 oz methode champenoise
Shake the first four ingredients and strain over crushed ice. Top with your champers to taste. Sprinkle a touch of cinnamon over the surface and garnish with a thin slice of your grapefruit.
And hey! This post is part of Tiki Month 2013 here at the Pegu Blog! Be sure to look around for LOTS more Tiki stuff all February!
Tiki Month 2011

Tiki Drink: Nui Nui

Click to enlarge. (One of a kind Tiki vessel, from ElizabethJeanCreations on Etsy)
Just to set the mood, I want to lead off Tiki Month 2011 with a cocktail, the Nui Nui. This is a Don the Beachcomber creation from 1937, and tastes like it.
NUI NUI Combine in a blender and flash blend (~5 seconds). The consistency should be chunky slush, not like a smoothie. Serve in an appropriate vessel. The classic garnish is a honking long orange peel.
Of course the true cocktailistas among you may want to make your own syrups, and good on you if you do. Don's Spices #2 is believed to be an equal mix of vanilla syrup and Allspice Dram if you want to give it a go. (I specify Trader Tiki's syrups because he makes good stuff, during Tiki Month I'm going to need lots of different syrups and I don't want to make it all myself, and because I like Blair and am happy to pimp his product.) Cinnamon, Vanilla, and Allspice are all strong, exotic flavors, and the Nui Nui presents them well. It's not the easiest drink to make, however, as I've found that even minute adjustments in the amount of the syrups can really effect the flavor and balance of the final mix. I find this drink to be fairly emblematic of the early Tiki drinks, that were heavy on the exotica. These flavors would have been practically unheard of in drinks in the 30's and 40s, and would have been critical in creating the vibe of foreign, even alien, excitement that drove Tiki in its early heyday. Don's drinks in particular have this sort of flavor profile. I've found a number of his recipes where he's gone too far for me with the spices, but this one is just right. (Source: Beachbum Berry's Sippin' Safari)abc
Other Liqueurs
Liquor Fairy

Gin ‘n Cinn

The Liquor Fairy is a wonderful guy. Recently, the good folks who represent Hiram Walker had him deliver a box. Said box contained a bottle of Hiram Walker Original Cinn cinnamon schnapps. They evidently wanted us to really take notice of this sample, as they included quite a selection of related bottles to help us make use of it. Here's how they put it all together (click to enlarge): Seven bottles. Seven deadly sins. Kewl. Original Cinn is a full 90 proof liqueur, so keep that in mind when you play with it. The nose is remarkably nice. Now, I ordinarily avoid most commercial products that claim the mantle of cinnamon, chiefly because they all sort of taste like Big Red. And I hate Big Red. But true to their word, Original Cinn manages to avoid that chemical burn sensation that may trigger the same taste buds as cinnamon, but doesn't fool them. It's a schnapps, so it will smack you in the face unless you chill it and/or mix it, but it doesn't taste like a product of International Flavors and Fragrances. What you have is a nice naturally flavored cinnamon liqueur with noticeable vanilla overtones that you can do some interesting things with. Now this all still leaves me with the issue of what to do with the stuff. The other bottles they sent along were selected to be the kind of things that should go well with Original Cinn, so I played with most of them. I also found that with relatively little difficulty, you can find many happy homes for Original Cinn in Tiki drinks, such as my favorite Jet Pilot. Simply try use it in place of cinnamon syrup, extracts, or shavings, adjusting amounts to suit you. In the end, the drink I offer uses none of the bottles, of even classifications, sent along as suggestions. I'm a pain that way. Still, I actually rather like this little drink. It is clean and a little sweet and pleasantly spicy. I suggest you give it a try as an after dinner cocktail (not a dessert drink), though I've been drinking it as starter as well.
  • 3 parts gin
  • 1 part fresh lime juice
  • 1 part Original Cinn
  • 1/3 part simple syrup
Combine ingredients with ice and shake gently. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with lightly bruised lemon verbena sprig impaled on a homemade brandied cherry.
The garnish is mostly for fun, though the verbena adds a nice hint of herbality to balance the spice. The cherry is just a good way to anchor a sprig in a cocktail glass with no ice.
Plus... ... delicious.
Original Cinn is an affordable bottle with lots of avenues to play with. It's thus an easy way to expand your tool kit and if you run across it, give it a try!
The-Liquor-Fairy-ThumbThe Liquor Fairy Was Here!
The following product, Hiram Walker Original Cinn, was recently provided to me as promotional consideration to encourage me to discuss it.
For a complete disclosure of my policies regarding promotional items and all other financial interests, please click this link, or follow the Liquor Fairy link in the header of this page.
@DAWInship on Instagram