Newcomers to Tiki bartending quickly face an uncomfortable question: Just how many rums do I need? With so many recipes calling for Lemon Hart this, Real McCoy that, and DonQ something else, it quickly becomes overwhelming.Continue reading “The Six Essential Tiki Rum Categories”
“Hey Matt, I think I found a bug in your book,” began a recent message from my friend, Mike. ”The Trinidadi Issues recipes calls for 1.5 ounces of Angostura bitters…seems like that can’t be right (?)”
I chuckled. Mike wasn’t the first person who’d messaged me about this recipe, certain they’d found a typo.Continue reading “Can You (Ever) Use Too Much Angostura Bitters?”
Day in and day out, one of the most popular post here at Cocktail Wonk is Minimalist Tiki: What you truly need to make the classics at home.
At long last, I’ve finally heeded Mrs. Wonk’s wisdom that this article was a book needed to be written. Without further ado, we’re pleased to announce THE BOOK!
Minimalist Tiki is a hefty, no-compromises book—hardcover and in full, glorious color, with more than 300 pages of geeking out, photos and recipes. It weighs over 3 pounds! We hope it will sit proudly alongside the books that inspired it.Continue reading “Minimalist Tiki – The Book! For Sale Now!”
Early in my Tiki education, which at that point was primarily Beachbum Berry’s Sippin’ Safari and a scattering of blog posts, I learned a mantra: Always fresh squeeze your juice! It’s not so hard with lemons, limes, and oranges, but pineapples are always a challenge. They’re cumbersome and not easily juiced with normal kitchen gadgets. Even after a budget centripetal juicer appeared, juicing pineapples was still something I sought to avoid – the juice was too frothy and the yield too low. It always felt like I was forsaking too much product in the wet, pulpy remains.
In recent years I’ve vociferously advocated for the purity and sanctity of the classic 1944 Mai Tai. This Victor (“Trader Vic”) Bergeron concoction is arguably the king of all Tiki drinks. Unfortunately, for some misguided souls, the Mai Tai is a catch-all term for whatever random collection of fruit juices, rums, and syrups are on hand behind the bar—rendering this classic one of the most abused cocktail recipes of all time. There’s no pineapple juice in a classic Mai Tai, folks!
However, it’s totally fair game to modernize a Tiki classic and name it something different. The modern Tiki world is full of innovators such as Jason Alexander, Daniel “Doc” Parks, and Justin Wojslaw, who day in and day out push Tiki’s boundaries while retaining respect for the classics. While I don’t put myself in their league, I do occasionally have a decent idea that ends up good enough to share here.
As an avid Tiki-hound home bartender, I am always seeking out the next unusual recipe twist that gets me excited. And while Tiki draws from a very broad palette, there’s really only so many combinations of citrus, syrups, spices, and rum you can concoct before you’re essentially riffing on variations of the classics. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that!)