Tiki Drink Master Martin Cate hits Stockholm

To my joy our good friend and Exotic/Tiki drinks master Martin Cate – owner of Smuggler´s Cove in San Francisco came all the way to Stockholm to pamper us with tasty exotic cocktails.

He spent two days talking about and mixing up tiki drinks on the roof terrace at 7 på Sjöfart which is an awesome location for this type of thing overlooking the water, the boats and the city while the summer sun slowly goes down.

It was fun, interesting, tasty, yummy, rummy and hands down delicious!

Martin also spoke about the virtues of the blender which was used in the golden tiki era and which, failed in popularity is making a come back among tiki drink mixers as it seems to me.

Also at the Tales this summer during the Mai Tai PaternityTest session with Jeff Berry, Ian “Rum ambassador” Burrell and Steve Remsberg the blender was discussed and Steve had brought his own very neat portable blender.

The blender does 3 things at the same time apart from the obvious, it chills, dillutes and airs the drinks in a blink. And especially when it comes to tiki drinks i think the blender is a really great tool because it´s also unmatched when it comes to blend heavier things like honey-cream-mix that contains butter for example.

It also gives a pretty yummy foam as well and at least for me when i see that foam spilling over i drool and get THIRSTY!

Some of the drinks i had was demerara Dry Float, Jet Pilot and Dead Reckoning, all fantastic exotic cocktails – well proven since a long time. I also had a very tasty Corn`n Oil.

Here´s the recipes for these if you wanna make them:

DEAD RECKONING (created by Martin Cate – from Remixed)

2 oz     Cockspur 12 yo or Mount Gay Extra Old Rum
1/2 oz     Navan Vanilla Liqueur – or other good quality vanilla liqueur
1/2 oz     Tawny port
1/2 oz     Maple syrup (only grade A)
1 oz     Fresh lemon juice
1 oz     Unsweetened pineapple juice
1 oz     Club soda
1 dash     Angostura Bitters

Shake everything except soda with ice and strain into a tall glass with fresh ice. Stir in soda water. Garnish with a fresh mint sprig and a lemon spiral

DEMERARA DRY FLOAT (created by Don the beachcomber cirka 1941 – from Intoxica)

2 1/2 ounces fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 ounces passion fruit syrup
1/4 ounce sugar syrup*
1 ounce Demerara rum
1/4 ounce 151 Demerara rum
1/4 ounce Maraschino

Shake everything except the 151 rum with ice, strain into double old-fashioned glass filled with crushed ice, and carefully float the 151. Do not stir.

JET PILOT (Beverly Hills Restaurant cirka 1958 – from Sippin`Safari)

1/2oz lime juice
1/2oz grapefruit juice
1/2oz cinnamon syrup
1/2oz falernum
1oz dark Jamaican rum
3/4oz gold Puerto Rican rum
3/4oz 151-proof demerara rum
1 dash Angostura bitters
6 drops Herbsaint or Pernod
4oz crushed ice

Throw everything into the blender, ice last. Flash-blend for less than 5 seconds. Pour into an old fashioned glass and garnish with something yummy.

These three cocktails are undeed yummy all of them.

To close this post, here`s  some pictures from the event that took place on sunday night. Enjoy!












Okole Maluna!


Here´s a little drink i´ve been curious about for a while but never had the time to try out until now when it´s time to get back to normal work after the Tales is over for this time.

The Yellow Boxer i found in Remixed by Jeff Berry – but who made it?  where is it coming from? what inspired it or made it happen? – well… i have no idea. Browsing through the interwebz  for research didn´t lead me to any much info, just recipes but no info on it´s history. In any case fresh lemon juice, tequila, galliano, lime and orange must be tasty right? and also this is such a drink that you can play with and have some fun.

So what do you do with a drink which you cannot find any info about apart from the recipe? well, you mix it up… it better taste good since it`s just the drink i can come up with in this post..


3/4 oz fresh lemon juice

3/4 oz orange juice

3/4 oz Rose´s Lime Cordial

1/4 oz Galliano

1 2/4 oz tequila (i used a reposado, Los Tres Tonos)

Shake with a scoop of crushed ice and strain into a tall glass filled with fresh crushed ice.

It was a while since i did something with tequila, it´s mostly rum being poured here…With tequila and many other spirits  i´m more like a periodic user, i don´t know why it´s that way but i guess it´s just the way i roll.

Anyway, back to the drink, how did it taste?

Hm…it was good…refreshing…and nice…but not WOW – and so i was dying to make a twist of it. Some drinks just calls for that and it´s something i really enjoy doing. Now i wanted something spicy, paired with something fruity, tart and sweet and then something dark..mellowed by something soft..

So i decided to use two rums i like very much, unfortunately one of them is impossible to find outside of the States or maybe even New Orleans, it´s the ONO Cajun Spiced rum i`m talking about. The other rum is Coruba dark, a very handy and versatile rum i always want on my shelf, i`m sure many of you readers agree on that.

I don´t know how to sub the ONO Cajun Spice though..but maybe a lightly cayenne and cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and clove infused dark Jamaican rum would add a similar spice but it wouldn´t be the same thing of course.

I don´t know exactly what goes into the Cajun Spice – on their website it says – “A blend of rums are combined with the kick of cayenne and cinnamon, hints of nutmeg, ginger, and cloves to create this truly unique, truly New Orleans flavor”

It`s a pity this rum isn´t sold worldwide, it´s such a good rum and i`m sure it would sell well too, i haven´t yet met anyone who have tried it and not really liked it. It`s this kinda rum that once you try it you`ll keep coming back for more.


0.5 fresh lemon juice

0.25 oz fresh lime juice

1 oz passionfruit juice

1 passionfruit, one half goes into the shaker, the other half is for garnish

0.25 oz Navan vanilla liqueur

0.5 oz sugarcane syrup (Petit Canne)

1.5 oz Coruba dark rum

Float 0.5 oz Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced Rum

Shake with a scoop of crushed ice and pour unstrained into a double old fashioned glass and add up with more fresh crushed ice. Float ONO Cajun Spiced rum and garnsih with a speared half passionfruit shell and either mint or other green leaf.

Well this was a very tasty drink! it`s fruity, sweet and sour, tart, spicy, rummy and layered. I think i`m lucky today!

I hope you can try it out with the ingredients listed, if not, try to get as close as you can. Also this is a drink that allows much experimentation, i bet this would be nice with a float of mezcal as well or aged rhum agricole.

So there i got my passionfruit and vanilla drink which i wanted to invent ever since i went to that vanilla session at Tales.

NEW ORLEANS FOOD part 2 – Some serious Gourmet Poboy`s and Oysters

This is a slightly belated post about food during Tales week..or really anytime! this is part two.

Forget about your ordinary Poboy´s for a while..no matter how tasty they are…cuz i`m gonna present some killer one´s that i hope you`ll try when you get a chance, maybe next year at Tales?

I saw two pics taken by Lauren (Fleurtygirl) of these gourmet poboy`s and the first one got me to seriously drool..and the 2nd pic blew me away.  When i saw those pics i was happy that i was in Nola and not a thousand miles away from those sandwiches…i`m talking about the gourmet poboy´s at Ye Olde College Inn.

Ye Olde College Inn” is located on 3000 South Carrollton Avenue. They open at 4pm.

They use fresh produce from the Fig Street Farm, Crescent City Farmers Market, the Hollygrove Market and Clayton Miller Produce. Locally grown seasonal fresh produce ensures fresh crisp and good quality food.

I try to find fresh local produce if i can, wherever i am because nothing beats it and it´s always good to support local businesses.

Fried Green Tomato Shrimp Remoulade  Poboy,

Award-Winning Fried Bread Pudding Po-Boy with Rum Sauce

So how did they taste?

Well, i must say they are BIG – i only ordered a half loaf – and the pictures do not do them justice, not by a long shot. The bread is lightly toasted, it`s a lot that goes into your mouth so to me a half poboy was enough. But i also did order the award winning dessert Poboy – Fried bread pudding Poboy with Rum Sauce and it was droolingly delicious.

The other Poboy was a fried green tomato shrimp remoulade poboy (award winning “Best Of Show”) quite a bit of creole mustard in the remoulade sauce and it was of course also delicious.

My friend ordered a perfectly baked Baked Redfish topped with Louisiana Lump Crabmeat over herb roasted tri-color potatoes, asparagus & cherry tomato vinaigrette and it was of course tasty in a way food can be only in Nola..! Next time you go to Tales or just to Nola, try to stop by College Inn for some real good treats, maybe paired with something fun at the neighbouring Rock`n Bowl.

You can also take the st Charles streetcar to get there, ride all the way to the end station at South  Carrolton (it`s a scenic and enjoyable route) and then you walk a couple blocks until you see College Inn on your left side.

But last but not the least..there´s another place to get real good poboy´s i need to mention and that is Parkway Bakery, want some REAL GOOD poboys? go to Parkway. You won`t be disappointed and you will return, i promise.

Shrimp poboy

And last…but not the least – if you`re on Frenchmen and gets hungry there is of course places to eat and one of the good ones is Adolfo`s on the second floor above the Apple Barrel but also on the street you may see a couple selling wraps.

That`s Sarah and Joe, they sell homemade wraps and the menu changes daily from barbeque to regular wraps and at a very good price, it´s tasty too and very welcome late at night when you come out of  for example Dba.



Charbroiled oysters and buttery garlicky cheeze sauce at Acme Oysterhouse.

Freshly chucked gulf oysters on the half shell at Felix´s Restaurant and Oyster Bar

Opposite each other on Iberville st near Monteleone are two very good places for oysters, both on the half shell and charbroiled. The first one almost always has a long queue – Acme and the other is Felix`s.

At Acme we had a fantastic meal with charbroiled oysters, fries and hush puppies, a fantastic smoky jambalaya which i will return to eat, fried shrimp and fish platter, french bread to sop up all the buttery garlicky cheesy sauce…

Well..there´s a reason why there´s almost always a queue outside that place.

But the place on the other side, Felix`s – is also worth visiting and less queue. They have great oysters and their blackened gator is yum!

Don`t be afraid of trying alligator, the meat is not dark red and weird as so many seems to believe, it´s more like chicken and it really is tasty in all forms from sausage on a stick or in a poboy to cheesecake a la Jaques-Imos or like this, Felix´s blackened gator.

After all you´re in New Orleans, they know how to cook…so try things!

Blackened Louisiana alligator at Felix´s.

Many thanks to Tony Harion for the pictures of the blackened gator and the charbroiled oysters.

That was all from this year`s food adventure from me which this time was all about seafood and poboys.


So it´s over as fast as it rolled…it`s amazing how time flies when you have a lot to do, see, write and drink!

The biggest “problem” is to choose the seminars and tastings, you cannot possibly do it all but the good thing is that there´s more than enough for everyone. You also must count on missing a few things that you intended to do because unexpected things happens and plans are changed etc etc

But i know one thing for sure – next year gonna be even busier since it´s the Tales 10 year anniversary and i`m afraid it gonna be total madness..which of course i hope to be able to attend.

I hope Tales seminars never will be moved out of Monteleone because that hotel with it´s distictive atmosphere and sense of place and history is unmatched.  But of course since Tales grows it needs more space, but it worked out good this year i think, it´s not a problem to walk between Monteleone and Sonesta since the two are so close.

To close up my posts on Totc 2011  here`s a little parade of pictures.

Mini muffalotta and something tasty in the wrap.

New Orleans and absinthe belongs together…

And so does cocktails, here`s one from the 10 Cane rum tasting.

One of the bar towels to support the oyster business after BP´s disaster.

Credit to Tony Harion for this wonderful picture of one of the cool lamps at the French 75.

It’s a Rematch!!!!! Beeyatch!!!! at a full-packed Cure as the very last event for this Tales. At that moment the Cure must have been THE most packed bar in the US. John Lermayer won the battle!

Pouring pouring..

Yet another tasting…


Pétanque outside of Monteleone.

And another tasting…

Music is everywhere in the city of jazz.

Beautiful Chartres st.

Zatarain´s charming wallpainting on Camp st.

TALES OF THE COCKTAIL 2011 – part 4 – Before Man the Plant


Ron Cooper showing us a picture of a bowl of pulque.

And now comes the last part of my recap of the Tales this year and my last session to write about was all about agave – tequila and mezcal.

The session was moderated by Steve Olson and the panelists were  Paciano Cruz Nolasco, David Grapshi, David Suro-Pinera, Iván Saldaña, Misty Kalkofen, Phil Ward, Ron Cooper, Tomas Estes

This 3 hour long seminar was preceeded by a Del Maguey tasting which i also attended. There i did meet both Ron Cooper and also the maker of my favorite Del Maguey mezcals – the San Luis del Rio and the Crema, which contains San Luis del Rio.

it was an interesting tasting and some very fresh cocktails, my favorite was made with fresh muddled pineapple.

A pineapple and one of those wooden mallets i hope to find some day.

Mezcal cocktail extravaganza!

Roasted agave to chew on – it´s tasty.

In a 3 hour long session there´s a lot being said and there´s no way i can recap it all or even half of it. But we got to kearn a lot about agave spirits.

For example that withn the genus agave there´s 150- 300 different species and they are not related to the cactus but to plants like onions, palm trees, garlic, pineapples, aspargus and artichokes who belongs to the lilies.

By definition the agave is the biological reaction of adaption to stress..and has adopted all the ways and requirements needed to ensure it survive in harsh conditions.

Terroir – which is a french term to describe the natural conditions that affect the growing organism – can affect size, maturity, sugar maturation and even shape.  Terroir is soil, climate, year round temperatures, day and night humidity, wind, air quality and sun exposure.

And after terroir we have the final touch – the hand of the maker. Agave is a fascinating plant and so ancient…

In the state of Jalisco where 95% of all agaves are grown and tequila made, there are two regions producing two differerent taste profiles of tequila. First the tequila valley where the tequila is described as masculine (wine-term) earthy and herbacious while in the second – Los Altos the Jalisco (the highlands) the tequila is said to be feminine, round and fruity.

These are no exact descriptions, it´s only generality and does not apply to all tequilas in these two regions to fit into the descriptions. But terroir is becoming more and more important.

The word mezcal comes from the pre-hispanic nahuatl language. Metl meant “maguey” and mezcalmetl meant “roast maguey” The common used word for agave today in Oaxaca and most of Mexico is maguey. But when you point at the plant in the tequila region people say “mezcal”

I`m not going into how tequila and mezcal is made, i´ve posted about that before and there´s tons of info on the net, let´s just say it´s handcrafted spirits that goes deep back in it`s  history and the lives of the makers and that has lots of flavor!

Y`all just have to come down to the Tales next year and see the sessions for yourselves and taste some great spirits and cocktails. Next year is the 10th anniversary as well so expect a lot of activity…

Tastings tastings…

A mezcal clay cup – they are called copitas, it tastes better in them.

Ready to imbibe…

Thirsty? come to Tales 10 year anniversary next year!

TALES OF THE COCKTAIL 2011 – part 3 – Mai Tai – A Paternity Test & Vanilla Vanilla baby!


This seminar was led by Jeff Beachbum Berry, Ian Burell and Steve Remsberg – a trio guaranteed to both enlighten and amuse.

Since the Mai Taii is my favorite cocktail this also was a must seminar. The contoversy of the who made the Mai Tai has been going on for so long but after this seminar the whole thing is a bit clearer at least to me.

I have always been of the opinion that the Mai Tai is Vic´s but how it became his has been a bit blurry, was it a copy of the QB Cooler or not? well now i know – it was a drink in it´s own right inspired by the QB Cooler which by the way we also were served during this seminar. I will never cease to be amazed at how alike they taste – the Mai Tai and the QB Cooler despite the different ingredients.

The seminar took us through the history of the great Tiki bars and then the Mai Tai controversy which now is pretty much cleared up. It`s amazing how a topic can keep being discussed year after year after year and still manage to fascinate people all over the world, that says something about the power of the Mai Tai..

Despite it´s appeal, the Mai Tai wasn´t an immediate success like the Zombie was which also is the very first Tiki drink. It wasn´t until in the year 1954 with the Matson Line that the Mai Tai became famous and the Mai Tai did for Vic what the Zombie did for Don.

So Trader Vic´s Mai Tai is a drink in it´s own right folks! and is one of these drinks that has a perfect balance and flavor.

The 1937 QB Cooler

Remsberg`s oh do cool portable blender.

Ian did bring along a big antique style shaker which he used to ROCK and SWING the drink instead of shaking it…i told ya these guys are amusing!

We also tasted the Florida daiquiri #2 which is very alike the Mai Tai, only a few ingredients differ.

It was a very interesting and also amusing session with a solid trio in the tiki drink and rum world.


This seminar was another not to miss session since i love vanilla and find the vanilla to be one of the most interesting plants and spice on earth.

The session was held by Philip Duff and he took us through how vanilla is made, it´s history and chemical components – this orchid is iamazing. Since i´ve been growing orchids for over a decade and have vanilla as my favorite spice i`m very familiar with it but there´s always something more to learn when it comes to this exotic spice.

Is there any more exotic and sweet smelling mellow spice on this planet? i don´t think so and Philip did a great job presenting it with both knowledge and humour. Of course we were served some  good cocktails as well as tasting samples of vanilla extract, Cariel vanilla vodka, Licor 43 and Stoli Vanil who were the sponsors of this seminar.

One of the cocktails had fresh passionfruit in it and a half shell for garnish and i have never tasted such yummy, fresh and s´crsip passionfruits before, those we get in sweden does not have that same great flavor, these were amazing!

Those who knows me and/or read my blog knows that i use a lot of vanilla in my cocktails and to make syrup and extract. Vanilla is so versatile and my favorite is the Tahitian bean which is fatter, thicker and more floral.

Beautiful, intriguing, sweet smelling, expensive, sexy and irresistible – that is vanilla…and in combo with passionfruit as in this cocktail we got it´s a killer! maybe it´s time to try to dream up a vanilla and passionfruit cocktail?