Tag - mai tai

Elsewhere For Tiki Month: Basic Civilization Goes Down the Mai Tai Hole
Tiki Drink: Hot Buttered Mai Tai
SideBlog: The Business Cost of a Real Mai Tai
“The Best Bar in the World”

Elsewhere For Tiki Month: Basic Civilization Goes Down the Mai Tai Hole

Among the Twitter types I interact with a lot is Joe Garcia, @JMGIII. We appear to have the same tastes in politics, bloggers, cars, and cocktails, and which of those roads led us to follow each other, I have no idea. Joe’s blog, Basic Civilization, is an amalgam of food blogging, drink (and Tiki) blogging, and even fashion blogging. And any blog with post titles like Rum, Bloggery, and the Lash is worth reading.

Joe has tottered onto the Tiki Month train, though he wonders where I got the authority to declare February Tiki Month. Well Joe, I am allegedly one of the 20 most influential booze bloggers on the internet, so if I say it’s Tiki Month, it’s Tiki Month! And here you are.

Joe’s post starts off about his Number One Son’s commitment to (his dad) throwing awesome parties for #1s’s birthday each year. He then goes on to explain how he is apparently building an entire Trader Vic’s or something to accommodate said massively spoilt offspring’s party. Finally, because he has the brains to invite parents to these parties….

See, here is where he makes his mistake. Every drink blogger has this moment in his life. It is the moment where he decided he is going to make Mai Tais. Joe doesn’t seem to realize how much the making of the best Mai Tai on Earth™ will consume the next year (including at least 5 posts) of his life. Look what happened to RumDood when he made an offhand comment one day in the Mixoloseum chat room about how Mai Tais were a lost art these days. I made Mai Tais and decided to do Tiki Month… that was three years ago. Look at this event now. All because I decided to make a Mai Tai properly. There are videos of my obsession.

I’d warn Joe to not go there, but it is too late for him. But for any young booze bloggers out there, don’t make Mai Tais! The life you save (socially speaking) may be your own!

Tiki Drink: Hot Buttered Mai Tai

Well, it is Mixology Monday time again, folks! That is our monthly round up of cocktail bloggers, posting in harmony on a single theme. This month’s festivities are being hosted by Nancy, The Backyard Bartender. The theme that she has decreed for us is, “Some Like it Hot!”

Now, I’m not much of a hot alcoholic beverage guy, at least not yet. (We’ll see after I read everybody’s posts) But as it happens, the announcement for this month’s MxMo came across my reader less than an hour after I had discovered the perfect drink for me for this month’s entry.

See, this is the last post I’ll be putting up during Tiki Month 2011, my annual month-long exploration of all things Tiki. Tiki drinks are hardly a bastion of hot beverages, tending more to the delicate chill of crushed ice. so it was fortuitous indeed, perhaps fated, that I find this idea.

One of the classic hot drinks, perhaps the classic hot drink, is the Hot Buttered Rum, and I’m sure we’ll see a few of these this Mixology Monday. One of the classic Tiki drinks, perhaps the classic Tiki drink, is the Mai Tai. The Mai Tai is made with rum. Hmmm.

Let’s Tiki, an excellent Tiki blog I just discovered this month, had a post late last year producing this cosmic convergence, the Hot Buttered Mai Tai. He even produced a good video of the process for making it, but since I’m stealing his drink for my MxMo post, I’ll make you have to visit his blog to see it.

Like any good Tiki drink, this one is a little complicated to make and requires a two step process. First, you have to whip up a batch of the mix. Simply combine 4 tablespoons of softened butter with 1/4 teaspoon of almond extract. Then stir in 2 tablespoons of orange zest. This is going on all the zest you can get from a single large orange. (Remember when zesting to not abrade the orange too deeply. Orange zest is yummy, the orange pith which dwells a millimeter deeper is not.) This is enough to make four Hot Buttered Mai Tais. I don’t know for sure, but if you keep it sealed in plastic wrap in single serving sized dollops, it should keep a good while.

When you are ready to make your drink, here’s the recipe.


  • 2 oz. good dark rum
  • 1 tbsp. mix
  • 2 tsp. honey (to taste)
  • hot water

Combine rum and mix in a small coffee cup. Add a small amount of hot water and stir to dissolve. Add honey to taste.

The resulting drink is interesting. It combines the basic Mai Tai taste elements, but from often different directions. It is pretty good, but is very easy to screw up as well.

First, don’t scrimp on the quality of the rum. Just because this is a hot drink doesn’t mean you can get away with any old rum.
I know.
I tried.
Just as with a regular Mai Tai, you need a rich, full-bodied dark rum, or even a blend of rums. (Rum blending for Mai Tais can lead you down the rabbit hole of obsession, so be careful). I tried this first with Mount Gay Eclipse, a perfectly serviceable dark rum which I’d never use in a regular Mai Tai, to totally bland results.

The other way you can ruin this drink is too much hot water. Add a small amount at a time. And try to find the smallest Tiki vessel you can to mix it in. Let your mix get to room temp before you make the drink and you won’t need much to dissolve it and the honey. Then add a bit more for heat and to taste.

The Hot Buttered Mai Tai is a worthy last drink for Tiki Month, and a fun challenge to make with a tasty result. It won’t replace the classic in my repertoire, but I’ll keep it in my quiver for the right occasion. Now, head back to Nancy’s place and check out every one else’s hot drinks. Some like it hot, maybe you will too!

That’s it for Tiki Month. As usual, I have about thirty posts still in my draft queue that I just couldn’t get to. I may hit a few throughout the year, and the rest will have to wait for Tiki Month 2012! It’s been a gas, thanks for all the readers and the comments. Stick around as we return next month to our usual classic frivolity!

SideBlog: The Business Cost of a Real Mai Tai

Why the Mai Tai you ordered tastes like KoolAid… or costs 20 bucks. There are happy mediums to be reached here, folks!

“The Best Bar in the World”

Merchant's-BarI have no reason to travel to Belfast, and that is a damn shame. If any of my readers in Northern Ireland want to do a murder mystery party, I’m willing to do it for travel expenses alone, just so I can stay at the Merchant Hotel. I stumbled across its bar menu via a Google alert for “Pegu”. You can read it for yourself here (PDF).
The basic personality of the bar is revealed through the menu, and I am in love. First off, the drinks are sorted into three sections: The evening, the afternoon, and the morning. Sure, some bars will place a few meager selections of pick-me-ups on the menu; A Mimosa here, and Bloody Mary there. But the Merchant Hotel Bar has thirty-seven cocktails it classifies as Corpse Revivers & Picker Uppers (including the Pegu). I have a desire to visit a bar where the valiant patrons are beating back the morning hangover with Absinthe Drips and White Ladies! I am obviously not alone, as the bar proudly proclaims on the hotel website that it was named “World’s Best Hotel Bar” (as well as having the “World’s Best Drink Selection” and “World’s Best Drinks Selection”) at Tales of the Cocktail.
The menu is supplied with some wonderful, evocative quotations about cocktails that make it worth the read. It also includes a truly comprehensive array of towering drink classics to tickle every fancy, and warm a cocktailian’s heart.
Finally, they have a selection of cocktails that may benefit from a truly premium base, which they refer to as offerings from their Connoisseurs’ Club. For instance, Daiquiri’s at the Merchant range from £6.50 with Santiago de Cuba Anejo, to £195.00 with Bacardi Gold 1950s.
But the piece de resistance is the Mai Tai for £750.00….

I always had an inkling that I’d sell the first one and something told me it could be that night. I watched as a regular customer entered the room with another gentleman and two female companions. They were in high spirits, dressed for the occasion and as I approaced their table, I heard the ladies discussing cocktails. They asked me what I would recommend.
This was exactly how I hoped it would happen. I had rehearsed the scene a hundred times in my head.
“This cocktail was invented for discerning people like you — it’s an original Trader Vic’s Mai Tai. The key ingredient is extremely rare Wray and Nephew 17 year old rum from Jamaica. It has been reproduced to the exact original formula and we are theonly bar in the world that actually has a bottle to sell.”
Four sets of eyebrows raised and glances exchanged. I could see they were impressed.
“You’ll be making history by being the first person to buy this cocktail,” I continued.

Read the menu yourself to see how the story turns out.

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