Tag - Rum

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Tiki Drink: Captain’s Blood
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A Tiki Original From CocktailChem: Suit, Tie, and Lei
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Tiki Drink: Beachbum’s Own
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A Tiki Original from Measure & Stir: I Should Buy a Boat
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Tiki Drink: Don’s Special Daiquiri
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Rule 5 Booze Marketing Jumps the Shark

Tiki Drink: Captain’s Blood

Captain's-Blood-2
Cocktail-style Tiki drinks really have ended up being the central theme of exploration this Tiki Month, and here is another: The Captain’s Blood. Of course, both in name and in flavor, the Captain’s blood is more Pirate than Polynesian, but I’ll allow it. After all, pirate stuff has a long association with Tiki, just as spy-themed music and paraphernalia do. And Tiki’s patron saints, Don the Beachcomber and Trader Vic, were really pirates in all but the name. (They also omitted the bad hygiene and most of the old ultra-violence, but let’s not quibble)

There are all sorts of recipes for Captain’s Blood on the web, and aside from all pretty much containing rum, lime of some fashion, and usually bitters of some type, there seems to be no definitive recipe. I suspect that this is one of those drinks with a great name that has been reverse engineered from the memory of the taste countless times, and for which we shall never find a rock-solid origin or original formulation. I went with the one of CocktailDB, which has propagated the farthest on the web and which is the most nearly Tiki in character. I made two amendments, which I will explain.

CAPTAIN’S BLOOD COCKTAIL

  • 1 1/2 oz Jamaican dark rum
  • 1 oz fresh lime juice
  • 2 dashes Angostura Bitters
  • 3/8 oz honey mix
  • 1/4 oz falernum

Shake ingredients and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish nautically.

The original CocktaiDB recipe calls for one dash of Angostura and a half teaspoon of sugar (roughly 1 tsp simple syrup). That result I found to be too thin, even sour, in flavor, especially if you are looking for a Tiki, or at least a Tiki Compliant, cocktail.
Increasing the bitters demonstrates that great, largely unappreciated by the masses, cocktail truth: Bitters in small amounts don’t increase the bitterness of a drink, they knock the edges off other outsize flavor elements instead. In this case, the extra bitters just sands down the sourness of the lime and falernum without hiding the underlying flavorful goodness.
I got the idea for the honey mix from Rumdood’s old post on homemade falernum. It was my choice to up the amount. I like the melding of the flavors resulting from the added sweetness, and the honey also gives a tiny bit of additional complexity. But make no mistake, this remains a tart drink. The honey also gives a tiny bit richer body to the cocktail, which I like as well. Next time I try it, I may even replace the honey mix with gomme syrup, to see how far I can take that effect.

The suggestion for this Tiki Month post from Jason McGrady, who presides over the mahogany at Sazerac Restaurant in the Hotel Monaco in Seattle, where Maggi and I stayed two Summers ago. What’s that? Yes, I keep in touch with bartenders I haven’t seen in two years. I keep track of an incredible number of good bartenders around the world whom I seldom actually see. You never know when I am going to have a sudden need for an agent to do me a favor and make me a good drink. I’m like the Shadow that way.

shadow2.psd
“Someday, bartender, I will need a Manhattan from you….”
Source: Alex Sheikman

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!

A Tiki Original From CocktailChem: Suit, Tie, and Lei

Suit Tie and Lei from CocktailChem
Jordan Devereaux of Chemistry of the Cocktail posted an original drink early on this Tiki Month entitled the Suit, Tie and Lei. To be honest, I didn’t know what to do with it, partly because I do not have one ingredient, Aperol, and partly because this did not look like a Tiki drink or a drink that I’d particularly like.

But I trust Jordan’s taste, and yesterday I went ahead and made up one, using a old bottle of Campari I haven’t gotten around to pouring out have been keeping around. And what do you know, it is remarkably good, and has far more of a Tiki vibe than I would have thought possible. It really demonstrates the transformative power of the kind of long list of ingredients that Tiki features, because no drink including Campari, Angostura, vermouth, and allspice should be this smooth and soft. It is a helluva lot more in your face than many Tiki drinks, but still remains accessible and possesses that undefinable new gestalt flavor that just isn’t any of its ingredients that makes Tiki drinks what they are.

Go check Jordan’s site for the recipe!

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 Drink: Beachbum’s Own

Beachbum's Own
Oh man, do I love this drink.
Rather than fighting his way through the savage natives of greater Van Nuys to unearth this recipe from a spider-filled attic of some bartender’s grandson, Indiana Beachbum Berry just up and created this one himself. Unlike the cocktail-style offerings which have comprised so many of the drinks that I have highlighted, and will continue to highlight, this Tiki Month, the Beachbum’s Own is a classic crushed ice, ceramic mug filler.

BEACHBUM’S OWN

  • 3/4 oz lemon juice
  • 3/4 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
  • 3/4 oz orange juice
  • 3/4 oz passion fruit puree (Use thawed Goya Passion Fruit Fruta)
  • 3/4 oz Licor 43
  • 3/4 oz Lemon Hart 151
  • 1 1/2 oz light Puerto Rican rum

Shake well and strain into a ceramic mug (preferably depicting the Bum his own self) filled with crushed ice. Top off with more crushed ice and garnish with your creative best.

I’ve adjusted Jeff’s recipe slightly from the one appearing in Remixed to account for 151 being the only Lemon Hart Demerara we can get in the States right now. If you have a regular proof El Dorado or other aged demerara, use 1 1/4 oz.

Licor 43 (aka Cuarenta y Tres) is an underused liqueur in Tiki drinks, if you ask me. Richer, deeper, and boozier than vanilla simple syrup, it adds more complexity to any already complex drink. In this beverage, it really helps give a unique and different element.

A final word on the Beachbum’s Own, it is very classically Tiki in that there is a lot of alcohol in here, and it does not give much indication of this to the unsuspecting drinker. It’s no Zombie or Hurricane, but comport yourself with all due caution….

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 Drink: Don’s Special Daiquiri

Don's Special Daiquiri
This is the first new Tiki drink I made in the calendar Tiki Month, so I’ll blog it first, even though it is hardly the best I’ve tried so far.
Don’s Special Daiquiri is on first examination a near perfect Tiki variant on the Gospel of Rum, the classic Daiquiri cocktail. It uses multiple rums, the sugar is replaced with honey, and Tiki standard passionfruit is added to the mix. Very Tiki. Also, not very good.
Here’s the recipe as presented by the Bum in Remixed:

DON’S SPECIAL DAIQUIRI

  • 1/2 oz lime juice
  • 1/2 oz honey mix
  • 1/2 oz passionfruit syrup
  • 1/2 oz light rum
  • 1 1/2 oz gold Jamaican rum

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.

I didn’t read the background, or really look at the ratios here before making it, or I’d have been expecting the near cloying sweetness we encountered at the first and subsequent sips. If you deconstruct the recipe, you end up with a strong, sour, sweet ratio of roughly 4-1-2, with fairly gentle strong, and pretty robust sweet elements. My default for Sour-type drinks is 3-1-1, which may or may not be a bit much for some of you, but I wager that this recipe’s balance will feel off for most everyone.

The recipe is of 1970’s vintage, which could explain the severe sweetness two ways:

  1. People in the 70’s had awful taste in cocktails. I doubt I will get much of a fight on this one.
  2. These proportions were actually meant to be served as a smooth-blended Icee style drink. The addition of a ton of blended ice would cut the sweetness a lot.

Could the Bum have missed something in his research? More likely, the ratios were constructed because #2 was intended, but the staff was mistakenly told it was to be served Up, and no one noticed because… #1.

But underneath all that gooeyness, the flavors are trying to dance a good figure. I tried again, closer to my usual preferred balance, by changing both the honey mix and passionfruit to generous quarter ounces instead of halves. It is better. Much better.

But it still has no business wearing Don the Beachcomber’s name. Anyone else worked over this one, and come up with the right proportions? I’m sure they are in there to be discovered, I just have to move on. Lots to do this Tiki Month!

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!

Rule 5 Booze Marketing Jumps the Shark


Excuse the crude Photoshop, but there are literally no photos from the manufacturer of this product that I can use, even on this blog.
I think.
We’ll see.

It will come as no surprise to any sentient adult that makers of alcoholic beverages have used sex from time to time to sell their product. Rule 5 is more often employed with selling booze (especially beer) than even in in blogging. Sexually charged images of attractive people draw attention. I guess I should be surprised it has taken this long for the industry to strap on water skis and jump that shark, but jump it it has. I’ve thought it had done so before, with Cabana cachaça, then again with Ron de Jeremy, but I was wrong.

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you G Spirit rum, whisky, and vodka. That link goes to the website, but be warned it is not remotely safe for work.

What distinguishes G Spirit spirits, beside naked pictures of topless women showing off the, ahem, product? Well, below is a picture from the company. Understand, this photo depicts the production process!
And yeah, I cropped hell out of it. Click for a bigger, but still cropped version. If you visit the G Spirit website, you will not be able to avoid seeing it uncropped.

Yup, the thing about G Spirit is, every drop was poured over the naked body of the master distiller you see above before bottling. Actually, just the rum is poured over Miss Amina Malakona there. There are equally, um, qualified young ladies who sluice off the whisky and the vodka. And yes, each bottle comes with a photograph to authenticate the process!

I have no chance to see what any of these spirits taste like personally, as they are not yet available in the US. I can tell you that, for instance, G Whisky No. 1 boasts that its “versatile flavours range from roasted almonds, dried fruit, and toffee, to honey, vanilla, baked apples and cinnamon”, as well as the breasts of 2012 Hungarian Playmate of the Year, Alexa Varga. Part of her prize for winning that honor was to be immediately flown to Germany to have 5000 bottles of scotch poured over her boobies.

I confess that even if I had access to a bottle of this stuff, I could probably pick out and confirm the vanilla, apples, and cinnamon flavors, but I could not vouch for Miss Varga’s breasts. Well, I’ve been to their website, so I can sure vouch for them, but I mean I could not vouch for the taste of…
Oh God, never mind.

The rum is an 11 year blend, the whisky a 12 year single malt, and the vodka is a sextuple(har!)-distilled barley distillate. I managed with great effort to discover that there are words on the website as well as all the pictures, and those words are all the right ones to use to describe these types of spirits. Caveat emptor.

I would usually embed G Spirit’s product video here at the end, but it is every bit as Not. Safe. For. Work. as the rest of their website. Here is the link should you wish to research the unique details of their actual production process. The apparatus includes a big hose and a glass basin, and it can be seen after the 4:10 mark, if you want to skip all the tedious footage of the photoshoots with the models…. I suspect there were fist-fights at the Heath Department over which inspector got assigned to supervise the production.

I gotta ask, have any of my European readers tried this yet?

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