Putting Raspberry Syrup to Work: Double ‘R’ Punch

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Alright y’all, it’s the first day of autumn and at this point I have to admit something: no matter what season it is, I want a Tiki drink. Adding to this constant desire is the bottle of Raspberry syrup I made last week, which goes SOOOO well with Rum. So no matter what the weather, as long as you’ve got Raspberry syrup, Orgeat, and Rum, you could really get into this Punch.

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The thing about Raspberry syrup is that it can totally be used in place of Grenadine. I was reading through tons of recipes from the Prohibition era and there was actually a high number of instances where Raspberry syrup was called for or used as a Grenadine sub. The other thing I found interesting was that almost all of these recipes used Brandy or Rum as the base spirit.

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Hell yeah. Rum. Rummmmmmmmmmm. I’m starting to think that my brain is automatically like, “but how can I put ingredient ‘x’ with Rum?”

And note my new (vintage) Planter’s Punch glass! Isn’t it cute? So cute! And appropriate since I am using Jamaican Rum in this recipe! (Thank you Denizen Merchant’s Reserve!)

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I think the process went something like this:

  1. I was like “Ok, the Raspberry syrup is both sweet and tart and goes well with Lemon & Lime, so lets start there.”
  2. Then I wanted Orgeat to help smoooooth things out cause there was a lot of acid happening with the juices + syrup.
  3. But then I wanted anise so I thought Absinthe + Peychaud’s for extra spices and depth
  4. Finally the Rums: Plantation Barbados 5 for smoothness, Denizen Merchant’s Reserve for the funk to dry the drink out a bit.

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…Mint for aroma and cause it’s so pretty with the red color of the drink. Same reason for using a Blue umbrella: colors are important when creating drinks! It’s like you’ve made a tiny, albeit temporary work of art!

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Double ‘R’ Punch

  • 1 1/2 oz Plantation Barbados 5 Year Rum (Sub a smooth, aged Rum)
  • 3/4 oz Denizen Merchant’s Reserve 8 Year Rum (Sub Jamaican Rum)
  • 1/2 oz Raspberry Simple Syrup
  • 1/4-1/2 oz Orgeat*
  • 1/2 oz fresh Lime Juice
  • 1/4 oz fresh Lemon Juice
  • 2 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
  • 8 drops St. George Absinthe Verte
  • Garnish: Mint sprig, Tiki Umbrella

Combine ingredients over ice and shake. Double strain into Planter’s Punch glass or Collins glass over crushed ice and garnish.

*Totally depends on your Orgeat. I’m using homemade Orgeat and it’s not as sweet as something like B.G. Reynolds Orgeat. I’d recommend starting with 1/4 oz, taste the drink, then add more if needed.

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This photo is really making me wanna escape to a tropical place…like right meow.

Cheers and have tons of fun with your Raspberry Syrup drinks!

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Tequila & Tiki: the Jalajaja Swizzle

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Happy September Monday to y’all! Hopefully things are starting to cool down for you, but if you’re living anywhere in the USA, I highly doubt it. It’s been super hot here in Brooklyn and I have it on good authority that it’s still pretty hot in SoCal and Texas too.

Not that heat = Tiki cause y’all know how I luv to Tiki The Snow Away, but nevertheless, I need a tall-icy-fruity-Rum-filled….wait, what?

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Bwahahaha! It’s not Rum, it’s Tequila! Today’s drink came about cause I really wanted to make a Tequila Tiki drink and I thought the Swizzle would be a good format. I was thinking Corralejo Reposado Tequila but then I was also thinking it’s pepper season and I remembered that this Tequila is really snappy when infused with Jalapeño (or Serrano, Serrano is super tasty too).

Go here for the Jalapeño infused Corralejo Reposado recipe.

I apparently couldn’t live without some version of Rum, so I added my new fave ingredient, Kalani Coconut Rum Liqueur. This stuff is maaaaad tasty: grassy (like a mild agricole), has some notes of chocolate, caramel, and citrus in addition to the obvious Coconut. Kalani is made with 100% Natural Mayan Coconut Rum, has a silky viscosity, a good level of sweetness, and (just like my bottle of Tequila) is from Mexico.

Sooooooo, maybe I really just wanted to make a Mexican Swizzle, mmmmhm. #MexicanPride

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The spice and juice set came about cause:

  1. Grapefruit and Tequila are best friends.
  2. Lime juice for more tartness and length.
  3. Honey cause I knew it would be a match made in heaven.
  4. Peychaud’s Bitters for anise and some interesting depth.

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Grab either yer swizzle stick or a long barspoon for this one.

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Oh and like spanish speakers do, pronounce the J’s in this drink “ha-ha-ha”, then it basically sounds like you’re laughing and will make you feel pumped to try this drink!

Jalajaja Swizzle 

  • 2 1/2 oz Jalapeño infused Corralejo Reposado Tequila
  • 1/2 oz Kalani Coconut Rum Liqueur
  • 1 oz White Grapefruit Juice
  • 1/2 oz Lime Juice
  • 1/2-3/4 oz Honey Syrup*
  • 2 dashes Peychaud’s
  • Garnish: candied Ginger, Mint sprig

Add ingredients to large Tiki mug, add cracked or crushed ice and swizzle til the glass has started to frost and everything seems to have combined. Add a lil more ice on top if needed and garnish.

*Depends on how sweet you want it. I tried it both ways and was honestly not sure which one I liked better.

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Salud and may your Tequila Tiki experiments be awesome!

L’Orgeat Mai Tai

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Summer Monday. Summer Mondaaaay. On one hand, it’s summer and on the other hand, it’s freaking monday! Fortunately, I’ve got something really cool to share with y’all on this paradoxical day of the week!

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Behold: L’Orgeat Almond Liqueur!

A couple of weeks ago L’Orgeat hit me up on Instagram and asked if I wanted to try some of their brand new Orgeat Liqueur. I obvi said, ‘Yes PLS!” and so here we are.

As a Tiki fanatic, I was a bit skeptical but I’m really digging this stuff. Made from California Almonds, it’s 20% ABV, has the viscosity of a really great Orgeat, a nice amount of Orange Flower Water, and really really works in a Mai Tai!

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Like, I was shocked how well it worked in a Mai Tai! SHOCKED I SAY!

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L’Orgeat provided me with a lil booklet of recipes (how thoughtful!) including one for a Mai Tai. The recipe called for “Jamaican Rum” so I used my fave Denizen Merchant’s Reserve 8 Year Rum. I’m also obsessed with this Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao, so boop, it went into the drink. They suggest using Smith & Cross as a float and gurrrrrrrrrl, it was goood.

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L’Orgeat Mai Tai

  • 1 1/2 oz Jamaican Rum (Denizen Merchant’s Reserve Rum is killer)
  • 1/2 oz L’Orgeat Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao
  • 3/4 oz Lime Juice
  • Garnish: Lime shell with Smith & Cross Jamaican Rum, Mint Sprig

Combine ingredients over crushed ice and short shake. Dump contents of shaker (ice and all) into chilled Double rocks glass. Plop your Lime shell in there, add some Smith & Cross to the shell, and a Mint Sprig. Whenever you feel like dunking your Smith & Cross into the drink, dooooo it.

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Btw, this Rum and this Curaçao are BEST FRIENDS y’all! BEST FRIENDS!

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A million hot as hell Mai Tai cheers to all y’all and I totally recommend L’Orgeat for all your future Mai Tais!

DP Swizzle

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Y’all, it’s JULY and hot and swampy as hell up in this piece. I know that Tiki doesn’t really have a season (Tiki The Snow Away, duh) but if there was ever a time for a tall, icy, Tropical Cocktail, that time is now!

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The inspiration for today’s Swizzle was this tasty bottle of brand-new-soon-to-be-released Berentzen Peach Liqueur. Berentzen were actually the first brand to send me products and I have loved them ever since cause QUALITY. All of their liqueurs are crisp, clean, bright, and come through very well in cocktails without being overly cloying.

The Peach is great! It’s Peachy with lemon and floral notes and not too intense or overwhelming. 20% ABV

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Cast of Characters:

  1. Peach Madness: Berentzen Peach + Bitter Truth Peach Bitters. Berentzen also sent me The Bitter Truth Peach Bitters and they’re really great too! Not too bitter, more like essence of peach. I decided to throw a couple of dashes in the drink to increase the “peachness”.
  2. Rum: I really wanted to make the sweet Peach flavor work with aged Rum, so I picked Denizen Merchant’s Reserve cause it’s dry, funky, grassy and just really lovely.
  3. Juices: I was debating between Lemon or Lime and asked some cocktail friends. One them replied, “Why not both?” Yeah dude, good call!
  4. Sugar & Spice: To give this Swizzle a lil pop I added, St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram, Demerara Simple Syrup for body + depth, & Angostura Bitters on top.

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I have a couple of Rhum JM swizzle sticks, but they weren’t long enough for this big Tiki mug. I opted to use my copper-plated Skull Barspoon from Cocktail Kingdom instead and it swirls really nicely. Yarrrrrrr, matey!

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Big Mint sprig for big aromatics.

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Don’t you love this mug? I like how serious he looks but then his moustache is so long and his lips so small!

DP Swizzle

  • 2 1/2 oz Denizen Merchant’s Reserve 8 Year Rum/Rhum
  • 1 oz Berentzen Peach Liqueur
  • 1 barspoon St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram
  • 1 1/2 oz Demerara Syrup 1:1
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice
  • 3 dashes Bitter Truth Peach Bitters
  • 5-6 Mint leaves
  • Crushed ice
  • Garnish: Mint sprig, Angostura Bitters, colorful swizzle stick

How to make the DP Swizzle:

  1. In the bottom of a large Tiki mug, add Mint leaves, Lime Juice, Lemon Juice, Demerara Syrup, and muddle.
  2. Add Rum, Peach Liqueur, Peach Bitters, Allspice Dram, crushed ice and *swizzle with a long Swizzle stick or long Barspoon.
  3. “Paint” the top of the ice with a few dashes of Angostura bitters, add Mint sprig and colorful swizzle stick.

*To swizzle: place the stick/barspoon between your hands and rub them back and forth rapidly so the stick/barspoon swirls the ingredients of your drink together and causes some dilution.

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Swizzlin’. I’ll be swizzlin’ all day loooooong. Tiki Cheers to y’all!

Thanks to Berentzen for the tasty Peach Liqueur and bitters!

Barrell Bourbon & the BB Julep

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Y’all, I’ve got a killer cask strength Whiskey from Barrell Bourbon for us today! I found out about them from a friend of a friend who suggested that I might be interested in their bourbon and hoooo boy, I’M SO INTO IT! If you note the photo above, I’m already 1/2 way through the bottle!

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Each batch of Barrell Bourbon is sourced from Kentucky or Tennessee and bottled at cask strength. The vision of Barrell Bourbon is to provide a unique expression with every release and I can honestly say, I’ve never had a Bourbon like this! The mash bill for Batch 006 is 70% Corn, 26% Rye, and 4% malted Barley. It was aged for 8 years, 6 months in charred white oak barrels.

Barrell Bourbon Batch 006 Tasting notes:

  • Color: deep honeyed Amber
  • Nose: Initial notes of toasted nuts, buttery popcorn, summer wheat, and charred oak followed by caramel, strawberry, baked peach, minerals, dried vegetals, and baking spices.
  • Palate: Really welcoming and super delicious. Notes of orange peel, apricot, peach, strawberry, buttery popcorn, wheat, charred oak, cinnamon, and dry stones.
    Add water and the fruit notes really come out! More apricot. Lemon peel. Wow! Super fruity!
  • Mouthfeel: at cask strength it’s hot but the heat dissipates quickly making for a smooth and very flavorful dram. Really wide and pleasant stone fruit and citrus notes dance on the tongue.
  • Finish: really really lonnnnng finish with stone fruit, decadent popcorn, and cinnamon notes coming in waves.

I would highly recommend drinking this neat in a snifter, at least for the first few sips. Once you’ve experienced Barrell Bourbon at full strength, add a few drops of water and see how the bouquet just opens up! Such an incredible experience.

However, y’all know how I roll and I was dying to put all that fruity fun into a cocktail!

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My first thought was “how can I make this Bourbon shine like the star it is? What cocktail could I put it in where it isn’t covered up by other ingredients?” MINT JULEP! Yes y’all, a Mint Julep with Barrell Bourbon and some Peach Nectar. OOOOOOH MAN!

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Since we’re using more than just Bourbon and sugar for this Julep, I’d advise stirring things together ahead of time.

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BB Julep

  • 1 1/2 oz Barrell Bourbon batch 006
  • 1/2 oz Peach Nectar
  • 1 barspoon Rich Cane Syrup*
  • 4-5 Mint Leaves
  • Garnish: Mint sprig

Combine Barrell Bourbon, Peach Nectar, syrup  and stir until they’ve combined nicely. Grab your Julep cup or Mule mug and muddle some mint into it. Add liquids, ice, and garnish with a big Mint sprig.

*If you have peaches and can make fresh Peach juice, you may want to omit the syrup.

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Damnnnnn this drink is good. I mean, this Barrell Bourbon is so damn good that you don’t really have to do much to make a great cocktail with it. I will be making more drinks with it in the near future so stay tuned!

Cheers y’all!

It’s Pimm’s Season

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Well here we are, together in the bright cheer of spring. And what do we drink in this most thrilling of seasons? We drink Pimm’s No. 1!

For those of you who haven’t had the supreme pleasure of sipping a Pimm’s Cup yet, it’s divine. Pimm’s No. 1 is a Gin based Liqueur which was originally envisioned as a “bottled cocktail”. There used to be six different Pimm’s Cups each with their own base spirit. Today there are the orginal Pimm’s No. 1, Pimm’s Blackberry & Elderflower, Pimm’s No. 3 Winter Cup, and Pimm’s No. 6 with a Vodka base. In the NYC area, I’ve only seen the No. 1 and Blackberry & Elderflower.

Pimm’s No. 1 tasting notes:

  • Nose: Ginny & juniper, coriander, delightfully fruity and herbaceous bouquet, Orange, Strawberry, spices
  • Taste: Gin, vegetal, citrus
  • Finish: short and wide

So essentially, we’re talking the greatest spring/summer Liqueur for anyone who loves Gin!

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Pimm’s No. 1 Cup (official recipe)

  • 60 ml / 2 oz  Pimm’s No. 1
  • 150 ml / 5 oz  Lemon Soda (the dry British sort)
  • Garnishes: Mint, Strawberry, Orange Slice, Cucumber

Combine ingredients in a Collins glass over ice and stir. Serve with a straw and fabulous garnishes.

Now, you know this wouldn’t be a Home Bar Girl post without some variations, so here we go!

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Pimm’s Collins

  • 2 oz Pimm’s No. 1
  • 1 oz Hayman’s Old Tom Gin
  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice
  • 1/2 oz Simple Syrup
  • Top with Soda Water
  • Garnishes: Mint, Cucumber, Strawberry, Orange Wheel

Combine Pimm’s, Gin, Lemon Juice and Simple syrup and stir. Strain into Collin’s glass with ice and garnishes. Top with soda water and serve with a straw.

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Caribbean Pimm’s Cup

  • 2 oz Pimm’s No. 1
  • 1/2 oz Denizen Aged White Rum
  • 1/2 oz Flor de Caña 7 Aged Rum
  • 1/2 oz Velvet Falernum
  • 3/4 oz Lime Juice
  • Top with Ginger Ale
  • Garnishes: Mint, Pineapple, Cucumber, Strawberry, Orange slice

Combine Pimm’s No. 1, Rums, Falernum, Lime Juice and stir. Strain into Collins glass with ice and garnishes. Top with Ginger Ale and serve with a straw.

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Mexican Pimm’s Cup

  • 2 oz Pimm’s No 1
  • 3/4 oz Casa Noble Blanco Tequila
  • 3/4 oz Cointreau
  • 3/4 oz Lime Juice
  • Soda Water
  • Garnishes: Cucumber, Orange Wheel, “Mexican Flag” of Lime Wedge, Banana Slice and Strawberry

Combine Pimm’s, Blanco Tequila, Cointreau, Lime Juice and stir. Strain into Collins glass with ice and garnishes. Top with Soda.

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Let’s just look at this again cause this “Mexican Flag” garnish is my fave thing ever. Also, yummmm.

Cheers to you and yours during Pimm’s Season! Thanks again to the Baddish Group for the Casa Noble Tequila!

Drinking with Mad Men Season 7: Tiki Cocktails

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Blue Hawaii & Mai Tai

To celebrate “The End of An Era”, welcome to a series of drinks from the television show Mad Men. Each week I’ll be featuring different cocktails from the show, so we can all drink along with our favourite Madison Avenue Ad-men and women.

By now, y’all should know that my love for Mad Men is deeeeep. It’s a meticulously filmed show with fabulous fashion, the story has me in the grip, and the cocktails are beauuuuutiful!

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Don’t you just love Megan’s hat? Beach hat perfection!

In the opening scenes of S6E1, Don and Megan are in Hawaii. (I want to be in Hawaii RIGHT NOW!) As Don reads an incredibly ominous passage from Dante’s Inferno, Megan’s second (third, fourth?) Blue Hawaii is delivered by one of the Hotel Staff. It’s almost like Don and Megan are in totally opposite worlds in these scenes. She, lost in her tan and tropical cocktails, Don in a brooding haze.

If I had to choose between those two temperments, I would totally be #TeamMegan in this scene. Give me the next Blue Hawaii!

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When it comes to making classic Tropical and Tiki drinks, I like to be accurate! I use the Beachbum Berry Total Tiki app to look up recipes and then make them as closely to the original as possible. Blue Hawaii was created in 1957 by Harry K Yee of the Hawaiian Village Hotel in Waikiki to promote Bols Blue Curaçao. Personally, I like to use “The Genuine” Senior Curaçao cause this shit is tastyyyyyy.

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Blue Hawaii

  • 3/4 oz White Rum
  • 3/4 oz Vodka*
  • 1/2 oz Blue Curaçao
  • 1 oz Sweet & Sour Mix**
  • 3 oz Pineapple Juice
  • Garnish: Not specified but usually Pineapple & Maraschino Cherry

Shake ingredients over ice and strain into a glass filled with Cracked, Crushed or Pebble ice. Garnish with fruit.

*I’m a Gin Gal and ususally swap the Vodka for Gin. Ginny, Gin, Gin. This drink is even tastier with Gin. (shocking!)

**Sweet & Sour Mix is 1 part Simple Syrup and 2 Parts Lemon Juice. Make your own, never ever buy it pre-made. Freshness is key.

Rachel Menken Mai Tai

RIP Rachel Menken, you were such a serious lady.

Now let’s go back to the beginning. Yes y’all, there is a Tiki drink all the way back in S1E1!

Don has made a mess of things with Rachel Menken and is asked by the partners to patch things up. They go for drinks that same evening. Don orders a Whiskey Neat while Rachel orders a “special Mai Tai” and what a Mai Tai at that! Look at that Pineapple “Firebird” garnish! It’s totally fabulous! Someday I will achieve such garnish greatness. However, I’ve noticed that the Mad Men props people forgot one key element to a Mai Tai garnish, the Mint sprig.

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If it be a Mai Tai, there shall be a Mint Sprig in the garnish!

Once again, I’ve referenced the Beachbum Berry Total Tiki app for this Mai Tai. The original Mai Tai was created by Trader Vic in 1944 for his famous Trader Vic’s restaurant in Oakland, California. According to legend, Trader Vic created the drink for some friends of his who had just flown in from Tahiti. One of the friends tasted the drink and exclaimed: “Maita’i roa ae!” or “Out of this world!”

Mai Tai (Trader Vic’s Original Recipe)

  • 1 oz Jamaican Rum
  • 1 oz Aged Martinique Rhum
  • 1/2 oz Curaçao
  • 1/4 oz Orgeat
  • 1/4 oz Simple Syrup
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • Garnish: Mint Sprig

Now, I’ve had to make some substitutions because I don’t have clear Curaçao or Martinique Rhum. I also would rather have a bit more Orgeat in my drink than add 1/4 oz Simple Syrup.

Mai Tai (this is what Home Bar Girl has in her apartment Recipe)

  • 1 oz Smith & Cross Navy Strength Jamaica Rum
  • 1 oz Denizen Aged White Rum
  • 1/2 oz Cointreau Triple Sec
  • 1/2 oz Orgeat
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • Garnish: Mint Sprig, Pineapple, Maraschino Cherry

Shake ingredients over ice and strain into Double Rocks glass on Cracked, Crushed or Pebble ice. Garnish with Mint Sprig, Pineapple and Maraschino Cherry.

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As far as the Mai Tai goes, there are a million variations so, have fun! I just recommend that you start with two kinds of Rum, some kind of Curaçao or Triple Sec, Orgeat, Lime Juice and a Mint sprig. Once you’ve got a feel for how these things taste together, get creative!

Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed these Tiki drinks from the Mad Men series. I’ll be doing this until the bitter end. See you next week!