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Sep 13, 2013 02:47 AM

Tiki drinks party - some questions

As I've written before, I have cocktail parties about once a month. I prepare a menu of cocktails and have snacks then we pile in cabs and go to dinner. Dinner party made easy (b/c I don't cook the dinner!) with great cocktails before hand!

This month I want to do tiki drinks. My husband is from Hawaii and he has a favorite Hawaiian restaurant here for the dinner.

BUT...I know nothing about tiki drinks. Let's back up even further: I know nothing about rum. But I'm a quick study and willing to learn! Here's what I have on hand:

-Appleton Estate (says aged 12 years on the box; also says extra in a wee oval above the name; also says Jamaica rum, hope that IDs it)

- Cadenhead's Green Label Demerarra Rum, product of Guyana, aged 12 years

- Myer's Original Dark

- Havana Club Anejo Blanco

- Havana Club Barrel Proof (dark blue label, don't know how else to ID it)

-Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva Venezuelan rum

- Bundaberg (which appears to be from Australia so I'm guessing that's right out!)

- Lemon Hart 151 (I see this also says Demarra, so is it right to assume it and the Cadenhead are duplicative?)

You're probably wondering how I know nothing about rum and have a bunch of rums. A couple I bought for various uses and many others were inherited. In the expat community people moving out and leaving you a bunch of booze is not uncommon!

So far I'm thinking I'd like to make:

- Zombie

- Painkiller

- Mai Tai

I've done extensive Mai Tai research in threads here and on line. I'm finding conflicting info. For the Painkiller I think I've found enough agreement among sources to trust a recipe. I haven't researched the Zombie fully yet.


-can any rum afficionados weigh in on what I've got and what I might need? I'd love to not buy more rum b/c....we have a lot of random rum! But, there is a specialty booze shop that seems to have a thing for rum. If they have one they have 50 different kinds at least. I don't know what all but can jump on the train and look for what I need if there's a strong opinion that something needed for true tiki drink mixing is missing.

Mai Tai

- I'm often seeing Appleton (I think the one I have?) but then I also see a mix of rums. For the uninitiated, would a single rum be good or would it be really flat w/o mixing 2 rums?

-Also, I see references to rich simple syrup and plain - shall I just experiment and see what I think or is one more authentic?

-Finally, as far as orgeat, I mostly see 1/2 oz (to 2 of rum) but some with 1/4 and Davis Sq goes as high as 3/4 oz in one thread here (though I note s/he leaves out simple syrup so that may be why). Again, is there a "right" proportion, or just taste and try?

I'll have more questions as I go (party in 2 weeks) but thanks for any input on the rum and Mai Tai questions!

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  1. For a non rum drinker you have pretty good selection of rums. I'm actually envious:)The only thing you may want to pick up is a dry aged rum from a french speaking island but that is only necessary if your looking for perfection in a mai tai.

    I would try an Appleton only mai tai then an Appleton/Cadenhead Mai tai
    RIch simple syrup is 2 parts sugar to 1 part water. plain is 1:1.

    I would recommend using 3/4 oz of orgeat in a mai tai. do further research googling rumdood and amountainofcrushedice, they both got me started on my mai tai journey.

    I often leave out the simple syrup because the orgeat brings in enough sweetness for me. You may want to try on initially without it then add to see what you think. I think the biggest must do's for a mai tai are fresh lime juice and home made orgeat

    The demerara rums are not duplicative in any way. The 151 is not only stronger but a different blend than the cadenhead version. Many tiki drinks have 151 floated on the top. I will let others speak to

    1 Reply
    1. re: quazi

      I agree that an agricole (French) rhum couldn't hurt. Additionally, I'd suggest considering Wray & Nephew overproof. It's a funky 126?-proof white Jamaican. Not a necessity, but unique and great for cocktails.

    2. Mai Tai - Trader Vic, Trader Vic’s restaurant, Oakland, CA, 1944
      1 oz. demerara dark rum
      1 oz. dark Jamaican rum
      ½ oz. orange curacao
      1 oz. fresh squeezed lime juice
      ¼ oz. Orgeat syrup
      ¼ oz. dark simple syrup

      Shake with crushed ice, pour into double old fashioned glass. Garnish with mint sprig.

      34 Replies
      1. re: JMF

        Thanks! Sorry for even more follow up questions below:

        - What is dark simple syrup? Made with dark brown sugar/demerarra sugar/molasses?

        - Do I have a dark Jamaican rum in the list above? The two that say Jamaica are the Appleton and the Myer's. I know the Myer's is dark but I don't know about the Appleton. This is what confuses me most about rums, the color descriptions - but that's not on the bottle and you cannot see the color so I never know what to do!

        1. re: tokyopix

          Yes, dark simple syrup is made with a dark sugar. brown sugar, which is whit sugar to hich molasses has been added. Demerara/turbinado sugar which are the same thing. Also muscavado sugar is a medium to very dark sugar. Japan has an amazing black sugar which had beautiful flavor to it.

          If a recipe calls for dark simple syrup use demerara sugar. 1:1 ratio with water. just put equal amounts in a jar and shake to dissolve. Let sit until air bubbles clear.

          Myers is a dark Jamaican rum. The Appleton is an aged Jamaican rum.

          Rums come in a few categories by color/age. Also different regions have different qualities.

          White/Silver/Light rum is aged for a few years (2-4) and then filtered clear. these are usually lighter in body/flavor. Aged, Amber, Gold rums are aged for a bit longer (3-8) sometimes much longer, (12/15/21+.)

          Dark rums are usually an aged rum that is then colored with burnt caramel coloring or with molasses. Blackstrap rum can be made with blackstrap molasses or colored/flavored with blackstrap molasses.

          Demerara rums are big bodied, excellent rums. They are made in Guyana. At this time there is one distillery in Guyana, but they bought out all the old distilleries equipment and make several styles within the demerara category. Lemon Hart and El Dorado are two of the most well known demerara rums. The Lemon Hart 151 is usually used in small amounts to bring added flavor to a recipe. Not too many recipes call for just the LH 151.

          I'll get back later about regional differences.

          1. re: tokyopix

            Regional categories and their replacements. This isn't an exact list. Just rough notes I put together.

            Barbados Gold Rum

            * Cockspur Fine Rum
            * Doorly’s Five Year
            * Mount Gay Eclipse Dark
            * English Harbour five year (from Antigua)

            Barbados Old Rum

            * Cockspur 12 yr. VSOR
            * Mount Gay Extra Old 12 yr.

            Barbados White Rum

            * Mount Gay Eclipse Silver

            Dark Jamaican Rum

            * Appleton Estate Extra 12 yr. – oak & caramel
            * Coruba – brown sugar
            * Myers - molasses

            Gold Jamaican Rum

            * Appleton Special Gold

            Gold Puerto Rico Rum - not in the same quality/class as prior to 1970’s

            * Cruzan Gold substitute
            * Flor de Caña Gold substitute
            * Bacardi 8
            * Bacardi Anejo
            * Ron Barrelito


            * Barbancourt Three Star
            * Barbancourt Five Star

            Martinique Amber Agricole Rum

            * Clement VSOP
            * J.M. Paille/Gold
            * Neisson Eleve Sous Bois

            Martinique Old Agricole Rum

            * Clement VSOP
            * J.M. VSOP

            Martinique White Agricole Rum

            * Clement Premiere Canne
            * J.M. Blanc

            Nicaragua Rum

            * Flor de Caña - all types, can be substituted for PR & Cuban rums
            * Flor de Caña Extra Dry 4 Yr White Rum substitute

            Spiced Rum

            *El Dorado
            * Montecristo
            * Cruzan
            * Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced rum
            * Captain Morgan Original ok, but not great

            Virgin Islands

            * Cruzan Light
            * Cruzan Gold
            * Cruzan Black Strap
            * Cruzan Single Barrel Estate – Gold
            * Flor de Caña Extra Dry 4 Yr White Rum substitute

            White/Light Puerto Rico Rum - not in the same quality/class as prior to 1970’s

            * Cruzan Light substitute
            * Flor de Caña Extra Dry 4 Yr White Rum substitute
            * Mount Gay Eclipse Silver – a bit rougher substitute
            * Bacardi and other PR brands mediocre

            1. re: JMF

              Holy cow, my head is spinning! Thank you so very much for all this info. You are a fount of boozy wisdom!

              I used to be a pastry chef so I'm up on all my sugars, just didn't know which one was supposed to be in this dark s.s. I actually love the flavor of molasses. I wonder if there is a drink that would highlight it? I live for Thanksgiving and wet-bottom Shoo Fly pie. Hmmmm, maybe a Shoo Fly cocktail.....

              1. re: tokyopix

                Although I lived down south for a few years, I never had shoo fly pie. What are the ingredients? Maybe I'll get some cocktail inspiration.

                1. re: JMF

                  You basically make a crumb top (flour, brown sugar, cut in butter). Then you put molasses and baking power in a bowl and add boiling water, letting it fizz up. Pour that into your pie shell and sprinkle the crumb over the top. When baked it turns into a pie that's like a coffee cake: crumb topping on the very top, moist, molassesy "cake" in the middle and a set, almost gel-like layer of molasses on the bottom. It is sublime! It is a Pennsylvania Dutch (Lancaster esp.) specialty.

            2. re: tokyopix

              Yes, you do Myers is pretty crappy

              I recommend using Coruba if you can get it, it is particularly good in Tiki Drinks (also not expensive)

              I like the flavor much better than Applteon 12 year (in most tiki drinks) and it is half the price

              Demerara are my favorite rums, LH 151 / ED 12 are musts, outside the US you can get LH 80 ~ great to see you already have it

              1. re: Dapuma

                Myers isn't that bad. Actually in tiki drinks it works well. But I agree about Coruba, which is great. It's a bit dryer than Myers, making it more subtle, and more complex in flavor. That's what I place in bars to use for a dark Jamaican rum, (besides the Myers since almost every bar carries that.)

                I also agree about demerara rums. They are my favorite as well. Lemon Hart is difficult to get in NY. The distributor has a $500 minimum to order and their other products are special niche and premium wines. So, many stores and bars don't carry their products,and the ones that do, don't always have the LH. I recently bought out a stores entire supply of LH 151.

                But I have become friends with the distributor/sales rep. who carry the El Dorado line. So I know which stores carry their rums, and every bar I work with will have their 3 yr white, the dark,the spiced rum, and the 12 yr old. I think for each of those categories they are both the best quality/flavor, and best priced.

                1. re: JMF

                  Thanks. I think the specialty shop had El Dorado, but I couldn't remember what was said here about it and I choked. I have so much booze in the apartment that we are looking for a piece of furniture large enough to hold all the bottles yet somehow still not a complete liability in an(other) earthquake. Oddly, there is no phone reception in the liquor store (it's B1 level, but still) so, while I took some notes with me, I couldn't access this thread while there.

                  I have LH Original, it says. Gold label, says Demerara. I grabbed it at the grocery yesterday in a panic b/c someone mentioned the Cadenhead was rather "funky" and I started worrying about my guests, who are game but none of them real cocktail geeks. And then I have the LH 151 which seems required for some recipes.

                  1. re: tokyopix

                    The old gold label will have VERY SMALL red corner on it if it is the 151 on the front label, otherwise it is the 80 proof

                    I personally like the old label better, but the new stuff tastes great as well

                    If you have the Remixed book from Jeff Berry I highly recommend Hart of Darkness

                    1. re: Dapuma

                      Hart of Darkness – Beachbum Berry, 2005
                      1 ½ oz. 151 Lemon Hart Demerara rum
                      ½ oz. lime juice
                      ¼ oz. lemon juice
                      ½ oz. passion fruit syrup
                      ½ oz. honey syrup
                      ¾ oz. soda water
                      1 cup crushed ice

                      Blend for five seconds and pour into a tall glass, add crushed ice to fill.

                      1. re: JMF

                        Already discussed in this thread :-)

                  2. re: JMF

                    I made a bunch of Hart's of Darkness last weekend, I forgot how good LH151 was - had been using ED12 for such a long time

                    The distributor in AZ recently dropped the entire ED line, so the only way to get it is special order - hopefully someone will pick it up again sometime soon

                    Our selection out here is not great but we do have good shipping laws so I can always get just about anything from CA

                    Not sure if I can mention a particular seller on here ? but if I can I have a really good one with great shipping for west coast people trying to lock down tough ingredients

                    1. re: Dapuma

                      As far as I know you can mention sellers.

                      1. re: JMF

                        Hi Time Wines ships for 9.99 to the southwest (per 12 bottles) and you can get pretty much anything you place I have used online

                        was very impressed with the shipping and they have excellent prices

              2. re: JMF

                Made this tonight after finally getting my Bols Dry Orange and making my dark SS. I used Lemon Hart and Myer's for the rums. I thought it was good. My husband liked it, too. He thought it was a great Mai Tai. But he asked where the float was. I told him it wasn't authentic. He was happy with the taste but thought the float looked nice. His go-to Mai Tai is at the Hale Kulani hotel and I think they do it.

                In any event, it was a winner!

                1. re: tokyopix

                  A fun way to do the float, if you'd like to, is to put a spent lime half on top (cut side up), fill it with 1/2 oz of LH 151, and light it up. Then the drinker can -- working quickly -- tip it over with a straw or whatever. It adds a nice dramatic flair to the experience.

                  1. re: davis_sq_pro

                    I tried this with the Cradle of Life. It was fun and the hubs really liked it.

                    Poor man got 3 hours of sleep the night before and when he got home I made him taste test 5 different tiki drinks. I'm surprised he didn't do a face plant after the second one.

                  2. re: tokyopix

                    The Hale Kulani is not exactly authentic however it is pretty close (there should not be a float in a mai tai) - better than most places (although they do use Bacardi yuk, Bacardi 8 is not terrible and I am pretty sure that is what they use there)

                    If you are using their recipe and modifying it a bit I think a great version of theirs would be:
                    Rhum Clement VSOP / Smith and Cross / LH 151 - I like Davis idea of using the LH as the float, burning or not

                    Beach Bum would have you using Rhum Clement VSOP and Appleton V/X - no float - 1oz each and the overall ratios are different

                    1. re: Dapuma

                      I puffy pink hear the Hale Kulani. We had our Hawai'ian wedding there. ( we were legally married at the Carlyle Hotel in NYC and had our religious ceremony in Normandy, France, but we had a blessing HI for all of my husband's friend who couldn't afford to travel so far) I always think it is a shame that they have this brilliant mid-century modern place and don't do great cocktails. Lewer's Lounge is a better bet than House Without a Key cocktail-wise. But we often meet people at HWaK for cocktails and you can hear some pretty music there some nights.

                      Such a missed opportunity on the great cocktail program. But I still love it It and the open air lobby at the Kahala are my happy places on Oahu, even though they have seriously messed with the Kahala.

                      1. re: tokyopix

                        Do you have a favorite place on Honolulu other than HWaK for drinks? I am not familiar with Lewer's

                        I had done some reseach on Honolulu for a trip that never happened (work got in the way) I could not find any proper tiki bars in Hawaii, the only one I found was on the big island and it closed last year sometime

                        1. re: Dapuma

                          Not old school but opening soon, anyway as soon as their permit issue is resolved. Julie Reiner and Brian Miller are opening a Tiki bar for Todd & Michele Rundgren in Hawaii, Tiki Iniki on Kauai. Anything Julie does in the way of cocktails is great, she owns Clover Club in Brooklyn, NY which won 2013 Best American Cocktail Bar, 2013 Best High Volume Cocktail Bar, 2013 Best Bar Mentor: Julie Reiner. Brian hosts Tiki Mondays in NYC, originally at Julie Reiners Lani Kai, then at Gold Bar, now at Mother's Ruin. I've been a regular at Tiki Mondays and been to Julies bars many times.



                          1. re: JMF

                            two things, one slightly off topic:
                            1) todd is god
                            2) jmf, there are about a zillion recipes on a zillion tiki sites for falernum.
                            do you have a favourite?

                            many thanks for all your help and patience.

                            1. re: linus

                              I know, and I haven't yet found one that is easy to make and that I like. I have tried a few commercial ones and the John D. Taylor Velvet falernum is the best. It's a liqueur and hard to find. Fee's is ok, but not great, non-alcoholic. BG Reynolds is pretty good, non-alcoholic. I haven't tried The Bitter Truth Golden Falernum.

                              Try Paul's recipe, it's the one that Beachbum recommends. It's also on Chow.
                              Falernum - #9, created by Paul Clarke
                              6 oz. Wray & Nephew overproof white rum
                              9 limes, zest, no whites
                              40 whole cloves
                              1 ½ oz. ginger, peeled, julienned
                              2 Tbsp. blanched almonds, dry roasted golden brown
                              14 oz. rich syrup (2:1
                              )¼ tsp. Almond extract
                              4 ½ oz. lime juice, strained

                              Combine rum, lime zest, cloves, and ginger in a jar and let sit 24 hours. Strain through cheesecloth, squeezing to extract all solids. (Or Buchner funnel) Add almond extract, rich syrup, and lime juice and mix. Will keep four weeks in fridge.

                              Here's one of Matt's recipes
                              RumDood’s Falernum #2

                              8 oz Wray & Nephew Overproof Rum
                              2 oz Lemonhart 151 Rum
                              2 oz (by weight) minced or shredded ginger
                              Zest of 8 limes
                              40 whole cloves
                              2 anise stars

                              Combine the above ingredients in a jar or bottle and let sit/steep for 24 hours After steeping, strain the contents of the jar through cheesecloth or a coffee filter – making sure to squeeze and ring all liquid out of the solid ingredients. Then add the following ingredients to the jar:

                              14 oz Simple Syrup (2:1 sugar to water, cold-process)
                              .25 tsp Almond Extract
                              3.5 oz Fresh Lime Juice
                              1 oz Fresh Lemon Juice

                              Shake the new mixture good and hard until everything is thoroughly mixed and you have a greenish-yellow mixture. It’s ready to be used right away!

                              1. re: JMF

                                i was hoping you had a tried and true handy, but that's cool.
                                your orgeat made with almond milk was easy and worked out really well.

                                i guess i gotta go buy some overproof rum.

                                1. re: linus

                                  You should buy Wray & Nephew anyway. In my opinion, the big three overproofs (Wray & Nephew, Smith & Cross, and Lemon Hart) are all bar staples.

                                  1. re: alphanumeric

                                    i've had smith and cross in the house before.

                                    sometimes monetary concerns take over, and i get a little cheap to have three different kinds of rum (white, aged, overproof) all at once.

                                    1. re: linus

                                      They are nice to have, but they don't last very long!

                                2. re: JMF

                                  There was a suggestion somewhere on Paul's falernum recipe to create a 'tea' from the strained solids. Paul had reservations due to the cooked flavor it imparted. In my most recent batch, I met them halfway and steeped the solids in cold water, strained, and cold processed it as a 2:1. The resultant simple syrup had plenty of falernum taste to it. Worth doing as an easy means of extracting every last drop of flavor from your ingredients.

                                3. re: linus

                                  I was just about to respond, "You mean 'Todd is god' Todd Rundgren?" Heart!!!!

                                4. re: JMF

                                  That sounds right up my alley :) thanks

                                5. re: Dapuma

                                  Sadly, I don't have a great Honolulu cocktail place. My husband wasn't a cocktail aficionado when he lived there (through undergrad) and now we go back with a toddler in tow which curtails most evening activities.

                                  Lewer's is in the Hale Kulani. Sometimes they have nice live jazz, but that's hit or miss. The same goes for the cocktails, though it's a good place to just request something made the way you want it.

                                  Besides the Mai Tai at HWaK, I haven't had a single tiki drink on Oahu. Sad. Perhaps there's a business opportunity here....

                                  1. re: tokyopix

                                    glad to hear the party went so well, welcome to the tiki cocktail club :)

                                    Oahu really needs a good cocktail spot, perhaps with all the tourists and high rent there is not enough demand for it, but I would think one of those hotels would try to show the HWaK up

                                    Is Tiki Iniki directly on a beach? My ideal would be to be directly on a beach and have a server bring us fantastically crafted cocktails (I can dream)

                                    1. re: Dapuma

                                      It went SO well! Thanks to all the great info here and the generous folks who offered it up.

                                      Oahu does need a good cocktail spot. I like beachy, but my dream would be in one of the great, old mid-century open-air lobbies. Lewers and the space right outside of Lewers could be it, and some of the cocktails are good. But they aren't great. The Halekulani is also showing a frightening tendency to mess with some of their great, original mid-century features. I hope they don't muck it up completely like they did to the (former) open-air part of the Kahala. :(

                        2. Painkiller – Soggy Dollar Bar, B.V.I., 1971
                          1-1/2 oz. demerara dark rum
                          1 oz. dark Jamaican rum
                          4 oz. pineapple juice
                          1 oz. orange juice
                          1 oz. Coco Lopez

                          Shake all except spices with crushed ice. Pour into a tall glass or tiki mug, add crushed ice to fill. Sprinkle with grated cinnamon, freshly grated nutmeg, and small pieces of lime zest. Garnish with a scored lime

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: JMF

                            Finally got to test this tonight. Really tasty! I had to make my own Coco Lopez. I went with 1 c. coconut cream, 1/4 c. light corn syrup and 1 tsp Monin coconut syrup. I don't know why I added that last ingredient. I think I was afraid the coconut flavor was getting lost in the sweet. But I had heard that Coco Lopez is very sweet so I tried to make it quite sweet.

                            I thought it was very tasty. I'm super happy with this drink!

                          2. Zombie, The Original – Don the Beachcomber, 1934
                            1 ½ oz. gold PR rum
                            1 ½ oz. aged Jamaican rum
                            1 oz. 151 Lemon Hart Demerara rum
                            ¾ oz. fresh squeezed lime juice
                            ½ oz. Don’s Mix
                            ½ oz. Falernum syrup
                            1 tsp. grenadine
                            Dash of Angostura bitters
                            10 drops (1/8 tsp.) Pernod
                            ¾ cup crushed ice

                            Blend for five seconds and pour into a chimney glass. Add crushed ice to fill. Garnish with mint.

                            45 Replies
                            1. re: JMF

                              1934 Zombie Punch == best tiki drink ever, IMO (Mai Tai is a close #2).

                              BUT ... Tokyopix should probably figure out how drunk the guests should be by the time dinner rolls around. Perhaps a Mai Tai or two would be more appropriate.

                              Another fantastic drink with the Lemon Hart 151 is Beachbum Berry's Hart of Darkness:

                              1/2oz lime juice
                              1/4oz lemon juice
                              1/2oz passion fruit syrup (you can buy it online - Monin is pretty good)
                              1/2oz honey syrup (50/50 honey/water)
                              3/4oz soda water
                              1 1/2oz LH 151
                              8oz crushed ice

                              Blend for 5 seconds (or shake for 20-30), then dump into a highball glass. Top up with more ice if necessary.

                              1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                I haven't gotten around to that one... now I am really psyched.

                                1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                  Thanks, again, to both of you!

                                  I serve partial drinks as a rule. For a non-tiki cocktail, say a regular Martinez recipe, I always get 2 drinks and sometimes have a bit left over. My cocktail glasses were chosen for their small size. But, that way everyone feels like they are getting more drinks and can taste more things. Plus, with the taxis, the only concern anyone really has is hangover the next day! This crowd generally puts back 3-5 of my smaller drinks and heads out still in relatively normal shape.

                                  I'm sourcing some small glasses now that would be good with the crushed ice.

                                  1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                    How long does their passion fruit syrup keep? I always pass over drinks using it because I can't find the stuff anywhere and I've got an aversion to Google.

                                    1. re: alphanumeric

                                      A long, long time. I think I've had my bottle for two years and I don't notice any issue except a bit of sediment. (Perhaps, if I compared it to a brand new bottle, I'd notice a difference. But it looks, smells, and tastes fine to me. Or at least it did a few weeks ago when I last used some.) I store it in a cabinet at room temperature.

                                      It will last even longer, if you pour an ounce of the syrup out and replace it with an ounce of 190 proof grain alcohol. And even longer than that if, after adding the alcohol, you store the bottle in the fridge. But that's probably totally unnecessary.

                                      1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                        For a much tastier passion fruit syrup you can make your own, and cheaper too. I listed it in the hurricane thread. But here it is again,

                                        Passion Fruit Syrup Recipe: In the frozen section of most Latin markets are frozen fruit purees. Get Passion Fruit puree (Maracuyá in Spanish) The best brand is La Fe, but others are ok. This is much, much cheaper than buying passion fruit puree sold for cocktails.

                                        Make simple syrup- equal parts of water and white sugar, shake in a jar to mix, hot water not needed. Then mix equal parts simple syrup to passion fruit puree to make passion fruit syrup.

                                        This only keeps in the fridge for about a week before it starts to ferment/get fizzy. But if you put the syrup in a pan and gently bring the syrup up to 170 F, then cool and bottle, it lasts much longer.

                                        1. re: JMF

                                          I use passion fruit syrup but cut the amount in half or it will be too sweet

                                          You can use the juice to make your own syrup if you want as well, but i like the viscosity the syrup gives the drink

                                          1. re: JMF

                                            Don't tempt me to create this. I've already got three pomegranates sitting around, waiting to become grenadine. I don't need yet another syrup crowding the cocktail sector of my fridge.

                                            On the matter of preservation, have you (or anyone else) played around with Pascalization? This process shows great promise for cocktail syrups.

                                            1. re: alphanumeric

                                              Pascalization. Interesting. I never thought about that. A pressure of 50,000 pounds per square inch for 15 minutes extends juice's freshness from 3 to 30 days.. I would have to look into what equipment would be needed. I wonder if a lab centrifuge working at 3500 gravities would work? 3500x14.6 lbs pr. sq. inch... But pressure isn't gravity. hmmm... I happen to have one of those in my cocktail lab. Only 4x250 ml, but not bad doing a liter at a time. Anyone know if, in the case of a centrifuge, the pressure from gravity would work? That may be why a liter of centrifuge clarified fresh orange juice I made lasted 5 weeks in the fridge and tasted fine. I'm not really a scientist, I just play on on tv.

                                              I have found that for preservation, using small amount of citric acid, and heating to a temp. of 170-190 F and holding for awhile, greatly extends the shelf life. Also then canning the hot syrup for 10-15 minutes in sterile canning jars allows the sealed jars to be shelf stable for up to two years. I have been doing this for around 8-10 years with ginger syrup, and for the past few years with other syrups. I made a few syrups this summer for bars and made then shelf stable in 8 oz. jars. Enough in each batch for 250 cocktails, maybe two months. When they run out, those cocktails are off the menu until next year when the seasonal fruit is at its best.

                                              For grenadine I don't even bother with fresh pomegranates anymore. I use POM wonderful juice 1:1 with sugar, plus around 5% lemon juice and 1% orange blossom water, give or take.

                                              1. re: JMF

                                                I should think the centrifuge would work. It wouldn't replicate such high pressures or its uniformity, but Pascalization appears to occur with substantially lower pressures as well, albeit creating proportionally shortened shelf lives. Please get back with results if you decide to play around with this.

                                                I made my grenadine, having glanced at your instructions. Unfortunately, I did not consider the differing acidity of lemons and pure citric acid. And I dumped quite a bit more OBW in than 1%. So that batch came out a floral sucker punch. On the bright side, I got to put your POM recipe to the test for the second batch.

                                                1. re: alphanumeric

                                                  Here's the recipe I use in the bars I work with. I haven't tried making it using citric acid. Or bringing it up to 170F-212 in a canning water bath t give a long shelf life.

                                                  2-1/2 cups pomegranate juice
                                                  2-1/2 cups sugar
                                                  1 oz. lemon juice
                                                  1/4 oz. Orange Blossom water

                                                  Put in a quart jar and shake until sugar is dissolved. Makes 1 quart.

                                                  1. re: JMF

                                                    seems like i've used pomegranate molasses as an ingredient in homemade grenadine.

                                                    i usually go a little easy on the orange flower water. for me, that stuff kinda smells/tastes like it should be in a ladies' room, not my glass.
                                                    i am trying to get over this.

                                                  2. re: alphanumeric

                                                    I like grenadine with a big hit of OBW! When I make my "Orange Blossom" juice mix it is very floral.

                                      2. re: JMF

                                        I'm out of gold PR's right now but just got a bottle Matusalem Gran Reserva. I would imagine aged Cuban-style would work just fine. Is that a fair assumption?

                                        1. re: alphanumeric

                                          Yes, aged Cuban would be just fine. Cuban is very similar in style to Puerto Rican.

                                        2. re: JMF

                                          Is "gold PR rum" a gold rum from Puerto Rico? If so, that's one I'd need to buy, right? Or can I substitute something I already have.

                                          1. re: tokyopix

                                            Yes, PR=Puerto Rico.

                                            Gold Puertto Rican rums. The low level Bacardi rums are mediocre and not recommended, but the Bacardi 8 and Bacardi Anejo are good. Another gold Puerto Rican rum that is ok is Ron Barrelito.

                                            You can substitute the following. Or any clean, light rum which is the PR style.
                                            Cruzan Gold
                                            Flor de Caña Gold

                                            1. re: JMF

                                              So nothing in my list of current would be an okay sub?

                                              1. re: tokyopix

                                                JMF will probably yell at me but I think you can get close enough the flavor profile -- especially in a cocktail -- by taking some of the Havana Club Blanco and mixing it with some of the Appleton Estate. Maybe 85% Havana Club to 15% Appleton. Then mix your drinks with that.

                                                Reasoning behind this: What you want, IMO, is something a touch richer/lusher than the Havana Club Blanco, but not super rich, nor very sweet. Considering the rums you have and mixing them with the Blanco to reach a PR kind of profile, here is my thought process:

                                                - Appleton Estate is rich, but doesn't have much of the typical Jamaican "hogo." It's actually surprisingly light for a 12 year rum. I think it's ideal for this experiment.
                                                - Cadenhead's I'm not familiar with, but from what I've read online it seems to have a lot of funk - probably too much if you're going for the PR style.
                                                - Myers's is molasses flavored. Not a good choice for this.
                                                - Havana Club Barrel Proof. Maybe? But I would save it for making El Presidente.
                                                - Diplomatico is way too sweet for this exercise.
                                                - Bundaberg is another I'm not familiar with, and I wasn't able to find very good tasting notes.
                                                - LH 151 is going to be too intense. And you'll need it for other drinks anyway.

                                                In any case it's not going to be dead on but once mixed I think you'll be close enough to get the overall feel of the drink.

                                                Okay, JMF, your turn :-)

                                                1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                                  DSP, Sounds like your thoughts would work well.

                                                  1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                                    Without researching it, I was going to suggest the Havana and Cadenhead's. but you have JMF's blessing...

                                                    1. re: alphanumeric

                                                      You all are like mad booze scientists!

                                                      I think I'm going to make my life easy and head to the crazy rum store today. I'll pick up one of the PR suggestions.

                                                      1. re: alphanumeric

                                                        Did anyone reading happen see my reply to this, which is now gone?

                                                        I'm not sure if I was modded whether there was a technical issue, but I explained therein that I read some reviews of Cadenhead's that described it as having "burnt rubber" notes and other flavors that don't fit the PR profile. I provided links too. Maybe that's why it was deleted? Anyone else ever feel like the rules around here are straight out of "The Trial?"

                                                        1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                                          I didn't see your post. Since I'm asleep when the US is awake, perhaps it went up and was taken down before I even woke for the day. I'm sorry it didn't appear and really appreciate the effort you went to.

                                                          I'm heading out to the shop that seems to specialize in rums. I've never seen so many in one place at one time before. I'll pick up a true PR for ease of mixing and personal education.

                                                      2. re: davis_sq_pro

                                                        I think the El Presidente would make a good addition to the menu. I have 4 drinks right now (Zombie, Painkiller, Mai Tai and Corn N' Oil as suggested below). I usually have more like 6-8, but there are so many things going on with the tikis and I'm the only mixer so I think I need to keep this one small.

                                                        However, 4 is a big, unlucky number here, so a 5th would be good for the sake of hospitality. Would you say this recipe is good? If not, where shall I look?


                                                        This drink would also help with glassware diversity!

                                                        1. re: tokyopix

                                                          What ingredients do you have so we can make suggestions?

                                                          You can go to this Beaachbum Berry approved site and plug in ingredients. It will tell you what tiki drinks you can make. Then narrow it down to a few that interest you and post here and I will give you the original recipes from Beachbum's books.


                                                          1. re: JMF

                                                            Wow, the layout at that site is fantastic! I liked being able to click on the missing ingredients and see right away if it/they were something I thought I could get. I noticed there's mention of an app. I won't be able to get the books until I return to the US for Christmas so if there's an app I'd happily purchase that. I'll look into it.

                                                            So, I pulled these based on the ratings and comments. Any thoughts o nthem? I thought having a gin-based drink would be nice to diversify a bit, but I'll defer to more experience. I hadn't thought that there would be gin-based tiki drinks. I also chose one w/o alcohol since I have one non-drinking guest.

                                                            Eastern Sour

                                                            Aloha Cocktail

                                                            Big Bamboo

                                                            Demerara Dry Float

                                                            Luau Scorpion

                                                            Maui Sunrise (non-alc)

                                                            Oahu Gin Sling

                                                            Royal Hawaiian (gin)

                                                            Saturn (gin)

                                                            1. re: tokyopix

                                                              It's almost midnight so I will look at them in-depth tomorrow. One thing to remember is that classic Tiki drinks recipes may need tweaking for today's tastes. I do like the Eastern Sour, and with some work it could be more than very good.

                                                              What non-alcoholic ingredients will you have? I came up with quite a few non-alcoholic drinks for the last few places I consulted to and they have been a big hit. Are you able to make syrups if you have the recipes and ingredients? cinnamon, allspice, vanilla extract, pomegranate juice, orange blossom water, etc.? What fresh squeezed juices can you do?

                                                              1. re: JMF

                                                                Oh my gosh, you're like my fairy booze father!

                                                                I'll have anything I need to get for tikis (juices I can't do fresh like quava, passionfruit, etc.), syrups (so far I need to make cinnamon and the dark simple, but yes, no problem to make others as I have allspice, vanilla beans, etc.). I'm going to get pomegranate today to start making the grenadine. I've got orange blossom already for baking and rose water. I bake a lot and used to be a pastry chef, so I have quite a few ingredients on hand and am comfortable with making my own stuff.

                                                                Fresh juices I can do are: lime, lemon, grapefruit (white or pink), orange, yuzu. I suppose I could also do fresh watermelon, melon, pineapple (just whiz it and strain?). I can't get more exotic fresh fruits like dragon, passion - I even have some mangosteens on the counter - but they are quite dear here. My non-drinking friend usually settles for iced tea, but it would be nice to give her something tropical.

                                                                Thanks so much for your help and sharing all your knowledge, both in this thread and others. Because of folks like you, I've learned to much from this board.

                                                                1. re: tokyopix

                                                                  Aloha Cocktail – Hank Riddle, Don the Beachcomber’s, 1970
                                                                  ½ oz. white Puerto Rican rum
                                                                  ½ oz. amber 151 rum
                                                                  ¼ oz. Cherry Heering
                                                                  ½ oz. lime juice
                                                                  ½ oz. orange juice
                                                                  ½ oz. Grenadine
                                                                  2 dashes Angostura bitters

                                                                  Shake on ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass

                                                                  Big Bamboo – Mariano Lucidine, 1960
                                                                  1 oz. gold Virgin Islands rum
                                                                  ½ oz. dark Jamaican rum
                                                                  ½ oz. lime juice
                                                                  ½ oz. orange juice
                                                                  ½ oz. grapefruit juice
                                                                  ½ oz. passion fruit syrup
                                                                  2 dashes Angostura bitters
                                                                  ½ cup crushed ice

                                                                  Blend for five seconds and pour into a tall glass. Add crushed ice to fill.

                                                                  Demerara Dry Float
                                                                  I didn’t have this recipe on hand, but a friend, Paul Clarke, had it on his website. Plus you can read his thoughts and his adaptation of the recipe.

                                                                  Eastern Sour – Trader Vic 1950’s
                                                                  2 oz. bourbon or rye
                                                                  2 ½ oz. orange juice
                                                                  ¾ oz. lemon juice
                                                                  ¼ oz. Orgeat syrup
                                                                  ¼ oz. simple syrup

                                                                  Shake well with crushed ice and pour into a double old fashioned glass or short stemmed goblet. Garnish with citrus.

                                                                  Luau Scorpion – Luau Restaurant, Beverly Hills, CA, 1958
                                                                  2 oz. gold PR rum
                                                                  2 oz. gin
                                                                  1 oz. brandy
                                                                  2 oz. orange juice
                                                                  1 oz. lime juice
                                                                  1 oz. simple syrup
                                                                  ¾ oz. Orgeat syrup
                                                                  1 cup crushed ice

                                                                  Blend for five seconds and pour into a tiki bowl. Top off with crushed ice. Garnish with edible flower. Serves 2.

                                                                  Maui Sunrise (non-alc
                                                                  )This is another one not in my database.

                                                                  Oahu Gin Sling – Thomas Mario, 1970
                                                                  2 oz. gin
                                                                  ½ oz. Benedictine liqueur
                                                                  ½ oz. crème de cassis
                                                                  1 oz. lime juice
                                                                  1 tsp. simple syrup
                                                                  3 oz. soda water

                                                                  Shake all except soda water on ice. Add soda water to shaker and stir. Pour into a pilsner glass, add crushed ice to fill. Garnish with a very long lime zest.

                                                                  Royal Hawaiian – Royal Hawaiian Hotel & Moana Hotel, Waikiki, HI, 1948
                                                                  1 ½ oz. gin
                                                                  1 ½ oz. pineapple juice
                                                                  ½ oz. lemon juice
                                                                  1 tsp. Orgeat syrup

                                                                  Shake on ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

                                                                  Saturn – J. “Popo” Galsini, Outrigger, Laguna, CA, 1967 IBA World Championship Winner
                                                                  1 ¼ oz. gin
                                                                  ½ oz. lemon juice
                                                                  ½ oz. passion fruit syrup
                                                                  ¼ oz. Falernum syrup
                                                                  ¼ oz. Orgeat syrup
                                                                  1 cup crushed ice

                                                                  Blend until smooth and pour into a pilsner glass.

                                                                  1. re: JMF

                                                                    So many thanks for these! I'll check out the comments and try to narrow it down to one or two. I'll try to make a few tonight and start the taste testing.

                                                              2. re: tokyopix

                                                                The Saturn is a great drink, I like it with Hendricks Gin quite a bit, I did not care for it with Junipero, however my guests have - It is a great Blender / Pitcher drink, make up 8 at a time and that saves you from having to make a ton of drinks - highly recommended (great at the pool as well)

                                                      3. re: JMF

                                                        Ron Barrilito 3 star - is also good sub but much more expensive than cruzan gold

                                                        3 star does have more flavor so it may work better or worse on its own, but in the rum more forward drinks it can hang on it's own versus the cruzan which is purely a mixing rum

                                                      1. re: tokyopix

                                                        I haven't made that recipe. Don's mix is 2 parts Grapefruit juice (canned/bottled is ok) to 1 part cinnamon syrup. If you need some other syrup recipes go to my old blog. It's not a blog anymore per se. just a place I keep some recipes for folks. See profile for address.

                                                      2. re: JMF

                                                        Hmmmm. I didn't love this. I made it according to this recipe, following it to a T. I used Flor de Cana and Appleton and made my Don's Mix with fresh juice. The only think I can think of is that I couldn't find OFW for love or money, so I used a grenadine I found (I can't find a link. It says Maison Fondee, all labeling in French but made in Japan???).

                                                        It just tasted boozy and like a party drink, not interesting. Like a kin to a LI Iced Tea or something.

                                                        Could I have done something wrong? Should I just make fresh pom juice + sugar and bag the OFW? This one was somehow flat for me which I realize is a ridiculous statement given everything that's going on in this drink!

                                                        1. re: tokyopix

                                                          What's OFW?

                                                          I assume you're replying about the Zombie? Make sure to be very careful with the Angostura and Pernod. Especially the latter -- too much will ruin the drink. I would personally be inclined to use two dashes of Ango, rather than one. But I'm a bitters addict.

                                                          If the drink is too boozy it's possible that you didn't shake it enough. I believe the original was actually blended for a few seconds, in an ice cream shop style open blender.

                                                          The grenadine is really only there for a touch of color and maybe a tiny amount of sweetness. You actually might want to slightly amp it up if the drink is too boozy for you.

                                                          Did you try Hart of Darkness?

                                                          1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                                            i believe the op was referring to 'orange flower water.'

                                                            1. re: linus

                                                              Ah, no doubt. You're definitely not going to taste the missing orange flower water in a tsp of grenadine in a drink with four ounces of rum.

                                                            2. re: davis_sq_pro

                                                              hart of darkness FTW! don't drink 3 doubles in one day

                                                              I took the Man Utd derby loss pretty hard - was a rough Monday

                                                            3. re: tokyopix

                                                              By the way, on the topic of the Zombie -- if you don't like 1934 you might try the 1956 version instead. I've played with it a bit and found it to be a nice enough drink, but thought it was absolutely amazing when, one evening, I swapped the pineapple juice for guava nectar. More ingredients for you to buy :-)

                                                              Here's the base 1956 version:

                                                              3/4 oz. fresh lime juice
                                                              1/2 oz. grapefruit juice
                                                              1 1/2 oz. unsweetened pineapple juice
                                                              1/4 oz. Falernum
                                                              1 1/4 oz. Puerto Rican gold rum
                                                              1 oz. Jamaican dark rum
                                                              1 oz. 151-proof Demerara rum
                                                              3/4 oz. Maraschino liqueur
                                                              1/4 tsp. Grenadine
                                                              2 dashes Angostura bitters
                                                              6 drops Pernod

                                                              (copied from here:

                                                              1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                                                I've got everything on this list!!! Yay!! I'm going to give it a try. I even have guava nectar.

                                                                I did blend my first one. :(

                                                                I did exactly 1 teaspoon grenadine and 1/8 Pernod. Interestingly, I tried it first w/o the Pernod (which I'm not fond of) and thought it better with.

                                                                I'll try this a try the guava swap and see what happens.

                                                                Many thanks!

                                                                1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                                                  I liked this one better, thank you so much!!

                                                                  1. re: tokyopix

                                                                    Glad to hear it. Maybe I'll make one or two tonight -- in the name of science!

                                                            4. I have around 300 original recipe, and adaptations, tiki drinks in my data base. Basically every single recipe from Beachbum Berry's books.