Old Beachcomber Favorite – The Penang Afrididi

Penang Afrididi 2

Here´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 at Don the Beachcomber’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.

There´s vibrant old dusty magic tasty tiki history here!

There´s also more versions of this drink, for example the #2 which simply cuts the 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.

Here´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.

There´s also an interesting descendent of this drink that was dates back to the Mai Kai opening in 1956 and they had two versions of it, that drink is called the Zula and it`s flavor profile has only three ingredients, Herbsaint (or Pernod), pineapple, gold rum. You can read about the Zula over at the Atomic Grog.

Penang Afrididi 

From “Sippin’ Safari” page 95 by Jeff “Beachbum” 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 I couldn`t resist to add some of the liquid from my jar of Maraschino cherries..and that´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`s Tribute to The Mai-Kai’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 rhum agricole sweetened with a mix of 50/50 passionfruit syrup and hibiscus grenadine.

Afrididi Martiniquaise (or Penang Afrididi #4)

Afrididi Martiniquaise

2 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 distincly rhum agricole forward drink….not strong, just fresh! the day I have my own fassionola made i`m gonna try that in this drink!

Orchid small

Bring on the spring and summer with a Strawberry Hurricane!

To me there`s nothing that tells me more that the spring and summer is on the way than fresh strawberries. Granted there´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 that´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 O’Brien’s but that´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 it´s purpose still and Pat O’Brien’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 it´s huge! which in a way can be a “dilemma” because if you don´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 it´s a good idea to use fresh and very cold ice, shake it quick and enjoy!

STRAWBERRY HURRICANE


1 oz light rum (use a good quality rum)

1 oz dark rum (use a good quality rum )

0.5 oz Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced Rum

1 oz fresh orange juice

1 oz fresh lime juice

1/4 cup passion fruit juice, or 1 tablespoon passion fruit syrup – homemade or B.G Reynold´s.

0.5 oz simple syrup

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.

Now…enjoy!

Bitter Truth Pink Gin

This is a gin from the Bitter Truth that i think was launched this fall. It´s pink, it´s spiced with bitters and it lives in a real beautiful bottle.

It started with sea sickness…that`s from where the tradition of blending gin and bitters began by the Royal Navy. And that`s why i now sit here with a bottle of the “Pink Gin” which is a blend of gin and aromatic bitters.

The nose is very light and floral and very delightful, it`s like a whiff of light perfume..The taste is complex, light on the juniper but it´s definitely there, lightly spicy and floral. The mouthfeel is gentle, there´s no alcohol burn and it´s easy to drink.

It`s quite exquisite and i believe too many mixers would ruin it, best of all would be a fresh gin and tonic or a drink with fresh grapefruit juice ( or another) There isn´t very much more to say about this product than that it´s a modern gin, light and floral containing aromatic bitters and perfect for martini cocktails, gin and tonics or fruity drinks.

I`m gonna try this in a drink that is called the Bali Highball – a mix of gin, guava nectar and pomegranate syrup with the zing of fresh lime juice.To the pomegranate syrup or grenadine i`ll add hibiscus flowers thus making it a hibiscus grenadine and homemade of course – unless you can get hold of B.G Reynold´s excellent hibiscis grenadine.

Not sure why it`s called “Bali Highball” though since usually a highball is made with two ingredients and served in a high glass – the original highball was made with Scotch whisky and carbonated water. I guess this is a tropicalized highball…

BALI HIGHBALL (From the book The Ultimate Bar Book by Mittie Hellmich)

1.5 oz Bitter Truth Pink Gin

2 oz Guava nectar ( or use juice if you can´t find nectar)

0.5 oz fresh lime juice

1 oz Hibiscus grenadine

4 oz chilled Club Soda

Lime wheel and orange blossom or other edible flower for garnish

Shake everything (except soda) hard with ice and strain into a highball glass with ice. I didn´t use a highball glass, i used a rocks glass instead with cracked ice.

Top up with soda and add garnish.

After the first sip i said zzzziiiiiiiing!!! how refreshing can a drink possibly be??? fruity and tart at the same time. Didn´t feel any juniper flavor though but the gin just seemed to fit perfectly in the puzzle of fruity flavors even though it almost dissappeared. And you can always up the gin with another 0.5 oz if a stronger drink is required.

It happens to still be winter but i can assure that this drink will be PERFECT later on in the hot summer, it´s the ultimate thirst quencher! That said,  of course it´s good now as well, i really enjoyed it and i certainly could have another, this one went down way to fast.

But i`m moving on to the next drink because there´s a next drink to be made, it´s never just one.

SPRING BREAK (My own)

1.5 oz Bitter Truth Pink Gin

0.5 oz green chartreuse

1 oz pineapple juice

0.25 oz sugarcane syrup

0.5 oz fresh lime juice

Shake together with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail coupe. Garnish with speared citrus leaves and cherry.

While the other drink was a refreshing and delicious fruit bomb this one takes on a much more adult flavor with pronounced flavors of the gin and the bitters it contains and the green chartreuse also was very prominent with it´s herbals. I first tried it without any simple syrup but adding just a little syrup made all the difference and took the edge off the bitterness.

My conclusion is that even though i haven´t tried this gin in any Martini for the simple reson that i happen to not like Martinis very much, it would suit perfectly for that drink but also as i have found out here it goes well with fruity drinks. It`s a given summer gin i`d say.

You can buy the Bitter Truth Pink Gin in many places and two examples are here or here.

Hibiscus Grenadine

What happens if you throw in a handful of dried hibiscus flowers into homemade bright grenadine? – it turns to teh awesome….

When you make homemade grenadine it usually gets paler in color than the commercial variants, but with the dried hibiscus flowers added this isn`t the case anymore, the hibiscus flowers inparts a blood red color. And on top of that they also add a very fresh crisp and floral tropical flavor.

It was my friend Chris Stanley from Rookie libations who first told me about adding dried hibiscus flowers to the grenadine, and i will be forever grateful.

Commercial grenadine cannot compare to homemade and its worth the little effort to make it yourself, it doesn`t take long time either. But you need to have fresh pomegranates and these are fairly expensive, but for home use 1 large pomegranate makes about 1L grenadine.

But the measures are a bit approximate but this is a forgiving recipe, it´s not like baking where everything has to be exact, sometimes i use one large pomegranate (if it´s huge) and sometimes i use two if they are a bit smaller.

Same thing with the flowers, i throw in “a handful” and it always works like a charm..

 

So here is how to make it:

Get 1-2 large pomegranates, check that they are of good quality. To easiest separate the seeds from the bitter membrane, just cut the pomegranate in quarters and brake loose the seeds under water in a bowl.

The seeds will sink and the membrane float.

In a pot make a simple syrup by adding 1:1 sugar and water, and add the pomegranate seeds and a good handful of dried hibiscus flowers. I find my hibiscus flowers in a health shop. Then lightly boil this for about 5 min, then simmer for another 10 min before taking off the heat and set aside to cool.

Leave to cool and set for 1-2 hrs to really get the flavors out.

Then strain and bottle in a clean bottle and keep the grenadine in the fridge. I dont know how long it lasts before it go bad as I always use it up fairly quick, but I would guess 1-2 months. To get a really bright red color its best to use white or light colored sugar.

See what a bright red color you get because you combine both pomegranate seeds and hibiscus flowers…and it´s all natural.

As I`m very fond of raw sugars and not so much like the refined white sugar I use a raw cane sugar that is called oxfam and it has a very lightly tinted white/goldish color which doesnt darken the final grenadine color.

Here is one of my favorite drinks containing grenadine and which becomes even tastier with hibiscus grenadine.

PORT LIGHT By trader Vic – page 66 in Grog Log

1 oz fresh lemon juice
0.5 oz passion fruit syrup
3 tsp grenadine
1 oz Bourbon

Blend with 1 cup crushed ice for 5 sek and pour into collins glass or nautical tumbler.Add more crushed ice to fill.

Here is Trader Vic`s Port Light from Trader Vic’s Pacific Island Cookbook

In a blender with 1 scoop shave ice:
2 tsp honey
1 oz lemon juice
1/2 oz Mynor’s Passion Fruit Nectar
1 egg white
2oz Bourbon

Blend and pour into Port Light glass, or a red tumbler with cracked ice. Decorate with fresh mint. The same drink using scotch instead of bourbon is called Starboard Light.

The Port Light and Starboard Light cocktails were originally served in special glass “Marine Tumblers” – the red glass for the Port and the green glass for the Starboard.