Shark Reef

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In my opinion, it’s always time for a Tiki drink. No matter how crappy the weather may be, or how dark it is outside, I am always going to say, “OH HELL YAS” to some tropical Rum magic.

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Today’s magic comes to us in the form of a Tiger Shark variation called Shark Reef. I started with Denizen Merchant’s Reserve, added Hamilton 151, some tasty syrups, Lime juice, and Pineapple Juice. Refrescando!

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For real though, these two Rums make one hell of a split base. Note to self, make as many Tiki drinks with this combo as possible!

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Ready? I’m ready. I think I’m going to make another one right after I finish writing this post!

Shark Reef

  • 1 1/4 oz Denizen Merchant’s Reserve Rum
  • 3/4 oz Hamilton Demerara 151 Rum
  • 3/4 oz Pineapple Juice
  • 1/2 oz Lime Juice
  • 1/2 oz Cane Sugar Syrup (1:1)
  • 2 barspoons Cinnamon Bark Syrup
  • 8 oz Crushed ice
  • Garnish: Pineapple shark tooth, two Paddles to escape from the Sharks!

Combine ingredients in blender and blend for around 8 seconds. Pour into double Rocks glass or Tiki mug and garnish.

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Yeaaaaah, so this is really damn delicious. Cheers y’all! SHARK REEF!

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DD’s Cider Punch

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It’s that spoooooky time of year! The time for sizzling dishes, ghoulish wishes, and festive gatherings. Seriously, if you’re throwing any kind of Halloween/Dia De Los Muertos/Harvest/I Love Autumn party, you can’t go wrong with Hot Apple Cider Punch!

I created this Punch last Friday for a party my illustrious girlfriend was attending that night. Being deep into Apple season, we decided go to with Apple Cider as the base and Rum as the main spirit. Let’s jump into the recipe.

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You’ll need spices. I recommend getting Mulling Spices that contain Allspice, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Star Anise, Cloves, Black Peppercorn, and Orange peel.

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You’ll need spiced liqueurs. I wanted to pump up the Allspice, so I included some St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram. Then I wanted to add the luxurious sensuality of Bénédictine D.O.M. which has notes of honey, citrus, saffron, cardamom, ginger, and is super silky.

Lemon Sherbet

You’ll need Lemon Sherbet. You’re so shocked right? Unheard of that I would use Lemon Sherbet in a recipe.

Why Lemon Sherbet in Apple Cider? 1. It’s my fave ingredient right now. 2. Lemon gives the Punch some brightness and bite.

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You’ll need a big pot, ceramic dutch oven, or Crockpot. Simmer baby, simmmmmer.

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Everyone got their stuff ready? Awesome. (Note, the Lemon Sherbet isn’t in the photo cause I used it all!)

DD’s Cider Punch (serves 12*)

  • 70 oz Apple Cider**
  • 2 oz Lemon Sherbet
  • Mulling spices
  • 16 oz Plantation Barbados 5 Year Rum
  • 4 oz Hamilton 151 Demerara Rum
  • 6 oz Allspice Dram
  • 6 oz Bénédictine D.O.M.
  • Garnish: Clove studded Apple slices
  • Glassware: Mugs
  1. Combine Cider, Mulling spices and Sherbet in pot and heat until liquid begins to simmer, stirring occasionally. Turn heat to looooooow and simmer for around 40 mins, or until the Mulling Spices have done their thing. “Nice spice, man.”
  2. Turn the heat down to the lowest possible setting. Add Liqueurs, Spirits and heat until the Punch is hot enough to drink but nowhere near simmering/boiling. You don’t want to cook the Alcohol out of the Punch, just warm the Punch back up.
  3. Serve in Mugs with Clove studded Apple slices.

*This recipe will yeilds ~104 oz Punch (evaporation could occur), which means 12 of your friends can have ~8 oz of Punch each, that is unless they’re big drinkers…

**I started with 64 oz Cider, and thought the Punch was awesome. My girlfriend thought it might be too strong for her friends and asked that I dilute a bit. I added 6 more oz of Apple Cider for a total of 70 oz of Cider. Then it was perfect. Remember, always ask your customers what they like most.

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Oh and y’all, these two Rums together, WOOOOOOOOO-eeeeeee. Killer combo! Both Plantation Barbados 5 and Hamilton Demerara 151 are in what I would call the “Smooth” category yet both have real depth of flavour without being too overpowering. If you’re using different Rums, I recommend staying in this category.

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Cheers to you and all your holiday Party Punches!

National Rum Day 2015

Rums

I’ve made so many Rum cocktails since I started this blog that I can’t even count them all. With all those #TikiTheSnowAway drinks last January, to a million Daiquiris, to various and sundry Rum cocktails, I am constantly asking myself, “where’s all the Rum gone?” I thought perhaps those crazy Monkeys from the “Blame the Monkeys” series had drunk it, but no.

It was I who guzzled the Rum!

This sunday is National Rum Day, so let’s give a huge round of applause for the glorious Rums you’ve got in your Home Bar! Here’s my lil tribute:

Brugal-Extra-Dry

Brugal Extra Dry is probably the closest I’ve got to a standard light Rum, yet way more delicious than most. It’s excellent in Daiquiris, Piña Coladas, and anything light, bright and fruity. Hailing from the Dominican Republic, Brugal Extra Dry is aged and has a wonderful nose of Coconut, Toasted Marshmallow, and Pineapple/Citrus.

Cocktails: DKO Punch, Classic Daiquiri, Pineapple Cinnamon Daiquiri

Denizen

Denizen Aged White Rum. I’ve probably used this one at least 2x more than all other ones because it this White Rum has loads of flavor. With grassy, banana, and pineapple/citrus notes, Denizen White Rum really packs a punch. I love using it in shaken fruity Tiki cocktails but also stirred drinks. LUV U DENIZEN.

Cocktails: DD’s Shrunken Skull, Golden Banana Grog, Captain Corcoran

Angostura-7

Yes, the House of Angostura makes more than just bitters! They make several killer Rums and a delicious Amaro too! I got this Rum to replace the beloved Flor de Caña 7 (my liquor store switched Rums on me!) and though not quite as smooth, the Angostura 7 makes up for that smoothness with versatility. Totally tasty and has a short, wide finish which makes it really useful for Tiki/Tropical cocktails. Angostura 7 is also great if you’re going to be making a drink with an Amaro, Liqueur or another ingredient with a longer finish.

Cocktails: Blame the Monkeys No. 3, DD’s Shrunken Skull

Smith-&-Cross

The funkiest one of my bunch, Smith & Cross Navy Strength Jamaica Rum is UNBELIEVABLE! Literally unbelievable. It’s so damn good. It is also 1/2 of the greatest split base of all time! I think about it every time I want a drink to get a little bit wild. Tons of fruity funk right in your face and a beautiful finish + that Navy Strength for bite! CHOMP!

Cocktails: Gamekeeper’s Grog, Seafarer’s Sour, West India Docks, Orgeat Gabor

Hamilton-151

If you’re into Rum and haven’t yet checked out the Ministry of Rum, you best head over there and get into it. A very tall man named Ed Hamilton has catalogued nearly every Rum on earth and used his vast knowledge to start a line of his own Rums. I just got this Demerara Hamilton 151 after Lemon Hart went RIP and It’s like 1000x better, no lie! The Tiki gods will bless you when you get this Rum.

Cocktails: my version of a Painkiller, Jet Pilot, Cobra’s Fang

BMD-Rum

Last but definitely not least, Berkshire Mountain Distillers Ragged Mountain Rum. Now, I got this during that trip to the Berkshires back in the spring but DID NOT OPEN IT! Why didn’t I open it? Because it’s a Rum which has been aged in Bourbon casks for the purpose of actually tasting like Bourbon! It’s Bourbon Rum! I tasted it at the distillery and was Bourbon during the first wave, then the Rum hits you on the way down your throat. Totally out of sight! Totally magnificent. It totally won a Double Gold at the SF Spirits Awards. Boom! I wanted to wait til the autumn for this one, so look for it in some drinks soon!

Hope you’ve enjoyed Home Bar Girl’s lil tribute to National Rum Day! Let’s all make some tropical cocktails to celebrate! Cheers!

#RumForTheHills: Painkiller

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National Rum Day is this Sunday y’all, and what better way to celebrate than with one of the best Tiki drinks ever! As I mentioned in my Hamilton Tiki Takeover post, I went to a Caribbean restaurant the other night for a Ministry of Rum tasting & Tiki party, and had several stunning Painkillers made by the incomparable Shannon Mustipher.

I can’t get this drink out of my head, it will not leave me alone! So I decided to try to make one at home and see how it turned out. It turned out pretty damn good although Shannon’s is better!

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The main difference between my Painkiller and Shannon’s is that she has Pusser’s Rum and I do not have an English Navy Rum. To overcome this challenge, I decided to mix two Rums together: Angostura 7 Year Rum and my newly acquired Hamilton 151 Rum to up the proof and give the drink that Navy Rum bite.

It was a good combo!

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Never forget the Nutmeg y’all. The Nutmeg is everything for this magical drink!

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I followed the Painkiller recipe from Beachbum Berry’s Total Tiki app while keeping in mind that I was using two Rums. I also made a last minute decision to add some Angostura Bitters to the mix for complexity. Yummmm.

Home Bar Girl’s Painkiller

  • 2 oz Angostura 7 Year Aged Rum*
  • 1/2 oz Hamilton 151 Overproof Demerara Rum**
  • 4 oz unsweetened Pineapple Juice
  • 1 oz fresh Orange Juice
  • 1 oz Coconut Cream
  • 2 dashes Angostura Bitters
  • Garnish: Orange wedge, Pineapple chunk, Cinnamon stick, grated Nutmeg, Hawaiian surfbort

Combine ingredients with a lot of crushed/cracked ice and shake it baby! You want this drink to be really frothy. Dirty pour (don’t strain, pour ice and all) into Tiki mug. Garnish with all of the things.

*If you have Pussers Rum or an English Navy Rum, use 2 1/2 oz.

**This Hamilton 151 Demerara Rum is the shit. It blows Lemon Hart out of the water. I AM NOT KIDDING.

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This drink will literally make you feel like you’re on vacation, so get ready for some Tropicaaaaaal breezes! Happy Rum times to you all! If you have any Rum cocktails that you would like to share on Instagram, use the hashtag #RumForTheHills.

Hamilton Tiki Takeover at Glady’s: Photo Essay

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On July 28th, my girlfriend, some friends and I went to the best event ever: Hamilton Tiki Takeover at Glady’s Caribbean restaurant in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Shannon, the beverage director and Rum Kween, invited me a few days before and I was beyond excited.

Ministry of Rum tasting! Ed Hamilton in Brooklyn! Tiki drinks with some of the best Rums ever! WOOOO!

Instead of saying millions of words about how marvelous this event was, I’m gonna do this Photo Essay style. Thanks to Blueprint Spirits for hosting the tastiest Rum event ever.

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The supreme menu for the evening: Kill Devil Grog, Bird of Paradise, Reanimator, Ministry of Rum Flight.

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Lil birdies waiting to contain the fabulous Bird of Paradise cocktail.

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Reanimators waiting for Tiki flames!

Hamilton Rum Reanimator Flame

FLAAAAAAAME!!

Hamilton Rum Reanimator

Note the Jerk Pork next to this Reanimator. Yummmm. 

The Carmelized sugar and charred lime smell on the Reanimator was legit out of sight! So was the drink itself. Definitely one of the most smooth, yet complex, yet refreshing, yet mind-blowing Tiki drinks I’ve ever had.

Here are the ingredients.

Reanimator

  • Rhum Agricole Ambre
  • Hamilton Jamaica Rum
  • Hamilton 151 (RIP Lemon Hart)
  • Honey
  • Falernum
  • Grapefruit Juice
  • Lime Juice
  • Absinthe
  • Bitters

Hamilton Jamaican Pot Still Gold

Next, I asked Shannon if we could go off menu and make a Daiquiri with Hamilton Jamaican Pot Still Gold Rum, Lime and Giffard Banane du Bresil Liqueur. It was so much tastier than I could have hoped!

Shannon Gladys Hamilton Rum

Shannon, master of measurement.

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The specs for this totally righteous Daiquiri were:

  • 2 oz Hamilton Jamaican Pot Still Gold Rum
  • 3/4 oz Giffard Banane
  • 3/4 oz Lime Juice
  • Lime wheel in coupe

Shake it like a rocket, double strain. Slurp.

Gladys Rums

Now, Glady’s already has a killer selection of Rum. This was probably 1/4 of their total collection. Needless to say, I wanted to check out their regular menu.

Gladys Painkiller

But instead of checking out the whole of their menu, we just ordered as many Painkillers as we could handle! Best coconut drink ever and Pusser’s Rum really makes this drink. Piña Coladas ain’t got nothing on the Painkiller!

I wasn’t able to photograph Ed Hamilton (he was a busy busy man!) but I did get to chat with him for a minute.

Me: “Hi! My name is Dani and I’m a really big fan!”

Ed: “Hi Dani, you don’t look very big!”

Me: “Well, no, I’m kind of small.”

Ed: “You see (stands up and towers above me), I’m very big! Haha!”

Then I tasted the Hamilton 151 and damn, it really is 100x better than Lemon Hart. I told him so and then said, “well it’s ok that Lemon Hart is dead.” And he said, “Lots of people have told me that they like Hamilton 151 more and yes, Lemon Hart is dead.”

From the lion’s mouth!

Hope you enjoyed this photo essay and be sure to get some Ministry of Rum in your collection!