HereÂ´s an old favorite again, the Penang Afrididi #1. It`s a “forgotten” tiki drink from 1937 and it was created by Don the Beachcomber. I like Donn`s drinks and I like this one! it was served atÂ Don the Beachcomberâ€™s Caberet Restaurant in the International Marketplace in Honolulu, circa 1958.
I`m curious about the name of this drink and wonder how it came to be and where it comes from…? if anyone knows please write in the comments.
ThereÂ´s vibrant old dusty magic tasty tiki history here!
ThereÂ´s also more versions of this drink, for example the #2 which simply cuts theÂ same ingredients by half, blend and strain into a cocktail coupe or glass. Also Jason Alexander at Tacoma Cabana made his version of this drink and called it Penang Afrididi #3.
Penang Afrididi #3
2 dashes of Horror in Clay Tropical bitters, 1/2 oz each lime, orange, pineapple juices and 1/2 oz passionfruit syrup, 1/4 oz each falernum and fassionola, 1 oz ginger beer, 1 1/2 oz light rum, 1 1/2 oz Deep Ones Gold Blend (a house blend of three rums he makes), flash blend all ingredients.
HereÂ´s the fassionola again, I need to try to make my own someday and I need to get the commercial version as well (the red one) I`d love to compare them, something I`ve had in mind for a while but that gonna be another post, and I also wanna try Jason`s version.
ThereÂ´s also an interesting descendent of this drink that was dates back toÂ the Mai Kai opening in 1956 andÂ they had two versions of it, that drink is called the Zula and it`s flavor profile has only three ingredients,Â Herbsaint (or Pernod), pineapple, gold rum. You can read about the Zula over at the Atomic Grog.
From â€œSippinâ€™ Safariâ€ page 95 by Jeff â€œBeachbumâ€ Berry
1 1/2 oz. Light Puerto Rican Rum
1 1/2 oz. Amber Virgin Islands Rum
1/4 oz. Fresh Lime Juice
1/2 oz. Unsweetened Pineapple Juice
1/2 oz. Orange Juice
1/2 oz. Passion Fruit Syrup
1/8 tsp. Pernod or Herbsaint
Put everything into a blender and add six ounces of crushed ice. Blend it at high speed for five seconds.
And IÂ couldn`t resist to add some of the liquid from my jar of Maraschino cherries..and thatÂ´s what gave the drink that wonderful shades of red.
This is one of the typical old Don the Beachcomber drinks where he used his fantastic imagination to create types of drinks that at the time had never been seen before with multiple rums, juices, spices and “secrets” (like drops of Pernod)
His Rum Rhapsodies as he called them!
Next time I want to try the Atomic Grog`sÂ Tribute to The Mai-Kaiâ€™s Zula…and i`d love to make a twist on it as well.
But until then i`ll make this – a twist on the Penang Afrididi using an aged rhumÂ agricole sweetened withÂ a mix of 50/50 passionfruit syrup and hibiscus grenadine.
Afrididi Martiniquaise (or Penang Afrididi #4)
2Â oz. Rhum agricole vieux (I used St James 12)
1.5 oz. Fresh Lime Juice
1/2 oz. Unsweetened Pineapple Juice
1/2 oz. Orange Juice
0.25 oz. Passion Fruit Syrup (homemade)
0.25 oz Hibiscus Grenadine (homemade)
1/8 tsp. Pernod or Herbsaint
Put everything into a blender and add six ounces of crushed ice. Blend it at high speed for five seconds. Pour into a snifter and add more crushed ice to fill. Garnish with a palm leaf and sugarcane stick.
It turned out to be a fruity and distinclyÂ rhum agricole forward drink….not strong, just fresh! the day I have my own fassionola made i`m gonna try that in this drink!
So now i have got to try out two very nice rhum arrangÃ¨es made by CÃ¨dric Brement and Benoit Bail, and since i wrote my reviews of BenoitÂ´s exotic Zwazo ananas-vanilleÂ rhum arrangÃ¨ and CÃ¨d`s award winning Banane-Cacao, i feel i want to make more drinks with them and see what`s good – starting with the tropical Zwazo.
Even though the traditional way is mostly to drink these rhums neat since they contain so much flavor of their own, they are also used to make tropical punch style cocktails.
I don`t think they have been used very much in tiki style drinks….or have they? in any case it doesn`t hurt if i try right? i`m curious to see how they mix with other rums.
Don the Beachcomber was a master of creating balance with many exotic ingredients – and he was especially skillful when it came to the art of blending rums and so was the original Mai-Kai mixologist Mariano Licudine. One person today that i come to think about getting close in that direction is Martin Cate. (SmugglerÂ´s Cove)
Starting with Zwazo ananas-vanille i needed to find drinks that had ingredients that would harmonize withÂ the pineapple and agricole flavors of the rhum and then switch out the rums used in those drinks for the Zwazo and some other rums that i figured would go well with it.
So i dived into the Bum`s new book the Potions…of the Caribbean for inspiration…and i sure found a lot.The book is filled with the one mouth watering drink after another (apart from all the interesting things there is to read in it) and the first drink that i decided to experiment with was the Siboney, which is a drink by Trader Vic circa 1950`s.
It`s basically a twist on the daiquiri with pineapple juice added and lemon instead of lime plus passionfruit syrup, mixed withÂ Jamaican dark rum (but only 1 oz) I decided to simply just add 1 ozÂ of Zwazo to give the drink more tropical depth.
The result was absolutely delicious! since the recipe called for dark Jamaican rum i took my Denizen Merchant`s Reserve which is a blend of plummer style pot stillÂ Jamaican rum and Rhum Grande Arome de la Martinique.
Now Rhum Grande Arome de la Martinique is not rhum agricole even if the name sounds like it – instead itÂ´s molasses based rum.
The reason why itÂ´s in the blend of the DenizenÂ Merchant`s Reserve is thatÂ when they checked in with rum cocktail historians during the development process â€“ they were told that Trader Vic likely blended this type of rum from Martinique with the 17 year Wray and Nephew in his original Mai Tai formula because it was cheapest rum available from Martinique at the time.Â
Note, that it says “likely” so thereÂ´s no proof whether Vic used molasses based Martinique rum or rhum agricole in his blend with Jamaican rum in his Mai Tai`s when the 17 year Wray and Nephew rum was finished.
So here we got a rum that contains pot still Jamaican rum and a molasses based MartiniqueÂ rhum, and then Zwazo – a rhum arrangÃ¨ with pineappleÂ and vanillaÂ macerated inÂ a rum base ofÂ 3 different rums from Martinique Trinidad and Guyana.Â
And don`t forget the overproof Polynesian Inspired float…
It`s a lot of rums going on here…but to my joy the drink tasted fantastic, cool and refreshing yet with a strongÂ rum bite. Deep flavor of mature tropical fruits, and then something “earthy”, maybe fromÂ the float of the Polynesian Inspired rum…I like the different layers in a tropical cocktail.
Â Siboney – Swazo Style
1 oz dark Jamaican Rum
1 oz Zwazo
0.5 oz fresh lemon juice
0.5 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
0.5 oz passionfruit syrup
Float of Jamaican style overproof dark rum
Shake well with ice cubes and strain into a chilled cocktail glass rimmed with sugar. (if you like)
Now unfortunately, for the time being, Zwazo is only sold in Europe, locally in Luxembourg and then in Paris at Christian de MontaguÃ¨re and itÂ´s a small batch seasonal product – so if you cannot find it, my best advice would be to either try to find a pineapple-vanilla rhum arrangÃ¨ from one of the French islands, suchÂ as Martinique (or a pineapple rhum arrangÃ¨ paired with vanilla syrup) or make your own. (google how to make rhum arrangÃ¨, and thereÂ´s a great french site with a forum containing tons of recipes here)
Likewise when it comes to the Lost Spirits rums, they are only sold in the US but not Europe or elsewhere…so i would sub them with Smith and Cross mixed with Lemon Hart 151, to get that strong punchy flavor – even though the flavor will not be the same, but since Smith and Cross mixed with LH 151 is a great combo i believe it will still taste fantastic!
Next cocktail to play with was theÂ Island of Martinique Cocktail, which is a Don Beach drink circa 1948. This drink is actually a tikified ti-punch…
It was described in BeachcomberÂ´s 1948 menu as a drink with “Lusty Martinique rums aged in casks for 120 moons. Subtly combined with falernum, wild honey, Angostura bitters and Maui mountain limes”
How does that sound?? mouthwatering to me…
The original recipe which is found in the book Potions of the Caribbean was handed to the Bum by ex-Beachcomber bartender Tony Ramos.
Island of Martinique Cocktail – with a Pineapple Twist
1 oz rhum agricole vieux
1 oz Zwazo
0.5 oz fresh lime juice
0.5 oz falernum
0.25 oz honey-mix (equal parts honey and water, gently heat it up so the honey dissolves in the water, then cool to room temp)
Dash Angostura bitters
A handful (3 oz) crushed ice
Float Lost Spirits Navy Style Rum on top (or Lemon Hart 151)
Blend at high speed in a blender for 5 seconds, then strain into
a hollowed out pineapple and float the Navy style rum on top.
The drink tasted fruity and spicy, the flavor of fully matured tropical fruit from Zwazo came through and this drink was not as fruity and earthyÂ as the first one but more mellow and spicy, with a kick from the float.
Now let`s dive deeper into this amazing book…
On page 164 i found the Voodoo Grog, a concoction created by Trader Vic, circa mid 1950`s. A drink containing equal parts lime, grapefruit and pimento.
First time i made it i was a bit overwhelmed by the pimento/allspice flavor so i took the Pimento dram down from 0.75 oz to 0.5 and it was better for my palate, but if you like a strong allspice flavor the 0.75 will be good.
Also it matters what brand of pimento dram/allspice dram you are using, the best i think are either homemade or St Elisabeth`s or Bitter Truth. For the moment i have St Elisabeth.
1 oz Denizen Merchant`s Reserve Rum
1 oz Swazo
0.75 oz fresh lime juice
0.75 oz grapefruit juice (white)
0.75 oz honey
0.5 oz passion fruit syrup
1 egg white
1 cup (8 oz) Crushed ice
Dissolve honey in lime juice and place this mixture plus the rest of ingredients except for nutmegÂ in a blender and blend for 20 seconds. Pour unstrained into a large snifter or tiki mug.
Dust with freshly ground nutmeg and garnish with mint and pineapple. (I also wrapped a pandan leaf around the glass)
Last cocktail is the quintessential rhum agricole drink…a ti-punch but with aged rhum agricole and therefore itÂ´s called a punch vieux.
Petit Punch Vieux
1 oz Zwazo
1 oz rhum agricole vieux
0.5 oz sirop de canne
One half of a fresh lime
Cut the lime half in two and squeeze both edges into an old fashioned glass. Drop in the first spent wedge in the glass, then rub the rim of the glass with the other and then discard the second wedge. Add sirop, rums and ice and stir to chill. I also did rim the glass with brown sugar and added a sugarcane stick and roughly cut lime peel as garnish.
Rimming the glass with sugar and adding a lime peel is not traditional punch vieux but this is all about experiments!
Sirop de Canne is a thick, dark syrup made from a slow reduction of fresh sugar cane juice. Exported by brands such as ClÃ¨ment, Dubois, Depaz, Dillon and La Mauny.
You can make a similar syrup by making a rich syrup (2:1 ratio sugar to water) with dark raw sugar.
Punch Vieux is always a nice treat as is the regular Ti-Punch…
Zwazo definitely mixes well in this style of tropical drinks, it gives a deep pineapple/tropical fruit flavor into the drinks which for tiki drinks fits so well into the flavor profile of a lot of them.
The aim with this particular post is to show that you can do a lot with rhum arrangÃ¨ that goes beyond the traditional use…
The first time encountered Denizen rum i was very pleased with it`s flavor, it was their white rum i tried and reviewed. Denizen rums are blends of rum from the Caribbean selected by master blenders in Amsterdam who have been handcrafting small-batch Caribbean style rums dating back to the early 1700s, when the Netherlands colonized much of the Caribbean.
Now Citizen SpiritsÂ have followed up with an aged rum that isÂ a blend of aged plummer style pot still rum from Jamaica and also are component of Rhum Grande Arome from the Le Galion S.A.E.M distillery in Martinique.
60% of this rum has been aged 8 years in small used American oak bourbon barrels.Â The Jamaican rums used in this blend come from Worthy Park, Hampden, New Yarmouth, and Clarendon. Most of the aged rum comes from Worthy Park Distillery.
The rums used in the blend were fermented using slow working yeasts in order to extend the fermentation time and allow the high ester flavor compounds to fully develop – a very important step in the rum making process.
One of the reasons they chosed to include the molasses based rhum grande arome in the blend and not the more traditional rhum agricole from Martinique is because when they checked in with rum cocktail historians during the development process – they were told that Trader Vic likely blended this type of rum from Martinique with the 17 year Wray and Nephew in his original Mai Tai formula because it was cheapest rum available from Martinique at the time.
Having learned this, they tried to come up with a historically accurate classic amber rum that is unapologetically funky and would have made Trader Vic proud. The fact that it has been aged 8 years also makes it a fine sipping rum despite it being slightly higher proof at 43% ABV.
Denizen Merchantâ€™s Reserve should be available in the US early April. Citizen SpiritsÂ will launch it in New York City and San Francisco initially and then expand to additional markets.
So i go straight to the Mai Tai eh?
This is a rum which obviously is partly designed for making great Mai Tais but of course not only – but also to be sipped neat and make other cocktails with – and flavorless cocktails you won`t get with it.
What a shame i haven`t had any chance to try the old JWray 17 year….which is a long time dream of mine, so therefore i cannot compare with it, but i can compare with other Mai Tais i`ve had with great rums and see how this rum stand up in comparison and i have a feeling it will do very well.
Also theÂ Denizen Merchantâ€™s Reserve earned a score of 94 at the 2014 Ultimate Spirits Challenge and was recognized as a finalist. Scoring 94 points is equivalent to “Excellent and highly recommended”
LetÂ´s taste it.
Nose – It`s a fruity nose with a bit of citrus and apricot, a hint of wood, very fresh.
Mouth – The same fruitness is there and it has a warm spicy finish. A hint of sugarcane, warm caramel, ripe tropical fruit, dried banana, apricot, wood.
My impression – This is a warm, funky andÂ flavorful rum, not much alcohol burn, itÂ´s smooth enough to sip and flavorful enough to mix tiki drinks with, at the same time it`s great for classic rum drinks as well. Fruity and spicy!
I bet it`s good to drizzle over ice cream too…or use in baked papaya with butter, vanilla and demerara sugar.
The first drink i wanted to make with this rum is the PYT swizzle from Rumba Seattle, (a bar and Caribbean restaurant in Seattle) and a place where they make some extraordinary cocktails, actually everything they make at that place looks tasty, i hope i can visit some day.
The PYT swizzle first catched my attention on instagram where i saw pictures of it after it won the Island Imbibe competition inÂ august 2013. I thought it looked so tasty….so here`s a version of it with Denizen Merchant`s Reserve and again, i regret not having any mint!
Top with a heavy doze of angostura and peychaud`s bitters
But mint or not, with this rum the swizzle turned out nice and spicy!
The next drink is the quintessential test cocktail when you wanna evaluate a rum in cocktails, due to it`s simplicity and way of letting the rum shine through in such a way that you cannot make a good one with a bad rum – the classic daiquiri.
And yes, it pass the test! this rum makes a very nice and somewhat spicy daiquiri!
And finally…the Queen of Tiki Drinks…(and the Zombie is the King:-)
2 oz Denizen Merchant`s Reserve rum
1 oz fresh lime juice (add the spent lime shell to shaker and later, in the glass)
0.5 oz orgeat
0.25 oz Combier triple sec
Shake all ingredients and garnish with mint – or if you don`t have mint, add the spent lime shell and a sherry into the glass.
Serve in rocks glass with crushed ice.
Yep, it definitely makes a great Mai Tai, the kind that gives that extra yummy after taste, provided you use good quality mixing products throughout. Of course i did the Trader VicÂ´s Mai tai. The only thing i regret is that i was out of mint but instead i just used the spent lime shell and a sherry.
To wrap it up – Denizen Merchant`s Reserve is very good, flavorful and i warmly recommend anyone to try this rum!
If you love rum you need to listen to “5 Minutes of Rum” – which is notes of rum, 5 minutes at a time. It`s a great podcast that is just starting out and episode 5 is just out. You can find it on the web – here – and then you can also find it on itunes if type in “5 minutes of rum”.
It`s made by Kevin Upthegrove aka heylownine and itÂ´s a great podcast and who doesnÂ´t have five minutes for rum?
HereÂ´s a strong and spicy rum drink from SippinÂ´Safari, it was created at the Hawaiian Village motel and restaurant in Tampa in 1969 by chef Joe King Sui in true tiki style and ambiance back in the golden tiki days.
The drink is a mix of dark or aged Puerto Rican and Myers rums,vodka, pineapple, orange and and lime juices, passionfruit syrup and honey and blended with crushed ice.
I have changed it up a little bit though since i don`t have the exact rums, so i used Smith and Cross and Appleton Extra and a homemade vanilla flavored vodka and then all fresh juices.
It turned out a strong and spicy drink…
Then i made a variation of it and changed the Appleton for an aged rhum agricole and the vodka for a white rum, then switched orange juice for fresh grapefruit juice and added a dash of angostura bitters.
Turned out tasty as well.
0.75 oz fresh lime
1 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
1 oz fresh orange juice
0.5 oz liquid honey
0.25 oz sugarcane syrup
0.25 oz passionfruit syrup
2 oz Appleton Extra dark Jamaican rum
0.5 oz Â Smith and Cross strongÂ dark Jamaican rum
0.75 oz vanilla flavored vodka (natural homemade with tahitian beans)
2 cups crushed ice
Dissolve honey in lime juice and place in a blender with all other ingredients and blend for 30 seconds. Pour in a tiki mug or tall glass and fill up with more crushed ice.
Garnish with pineapple leaves or slice and if you wish maraschino cherry.
To me there`s nothing that tells me more that the spring and summer is on the way than fresh strawberries. Granted thereÂ´s some time left until the summer is here and the strawberries i see in the shops are imported but just seeing them is at least a promise…
The other day i saw a picture of a strawberry Hurricane over at a blog i really like – Suck The Heads – and when i saw that picture i immediately wanted to have one.
And thatÂ´s why i`m making it now, i decided to mix up my own version. To most people the Hurricane cocktail is the same as the red ones you get at Pat Oâ€™Brienâ€™s but thatÂ´s not the whole truth. The original Hurricane is quite a different beast…
It contains fresh fruit juices and not that mixer in a bag – you can read all about here and here – that said, the “tourist-version” sure serves itÂ´s purpose still andÂ PatÂ Oâ€™Brienâ€™s is a cool place but the real one is what i`m going for and in this post i wanna change it up a bit by adding one large muddled strawberry to the party plus some of one of my favorite rums, Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced.
The Hurricane is wonderful cocktail in the spring and summer and itÂ´s huge! which in a way can be a “dilemma” because if you donÂ´t want it to become too diluted and watery too fast you need to not drink to slow but at the same time if you drink fast you get drunk too quick…
To prevent quick dilution itÂ´s a good idea to use fresh and very cold ice, shake it quick and enjoy!
1 teaspoon grenadine – i use homemade or B.G Reynold`s hibiscus grenadine which i find superior to any other grenadine
1 really large ripe strawberry or 2-3 small ones
1 small tsp golden fine sugar
Muddle the strawberry with sugar in a shaker, add the rest of ingredients and shake with ice and double strain into a hurricane glass half filled with crushed ice. Add more crushed ice to fill and garnish with speared strawberry slices and pineapple leaf tops.