While I would never say we were stuck in a rut with our cocktails here at the farm, we did notice that we were in a bit of a holding pattern. Lots of gin and lime, lots of Negroni variants and Florodoras at every party (that trend won’t change soon, everyone loves those Florodoras). So we decided to look for something different, but also had an additional challenge: we still have our last big batch of Meyer lemons and Cara-Cara oranges to use before they go bad. Happily, if you have a lot of citrus, the world of cocktails has a pretty standard answer, Tiki.
It was about time we got back to Tiki. Winter or summer, or anywhere in between, when you want a quick smile and a tasty sip a Tiki drink is usually the answer. The only hiccup in our plans for a Tiki drink is that many of our favorites use tart lime and/or pineapple juice, rather than lemons and oranges. But a little research on our Tiki app from Beachbum Berry gave us the Scorpion, as classic from Trader Vic Bergeron. Perfect.
And the Scorpion is a very good tiki drink, particularly for summer. The Scorpion combines orange juice, lemon juice, orgeat syrup, light rum, brandy, crushed ice and a fruit / mint garnish. The sweeter citrus, light rum and brandy give you a bright, clean sip without some of the aged rum and spice funk of many tiki drinks. If it wasn’t so boozy (hey, it’s still a tiki drink) you could almost make a summer punch out of the Scorpion. In fact, if you add some sparking wine and tiki bitters you have a lovely punch, in case you need to serve a crowd.
The other fun thing we did with the Scorpion was pull out the blender (not something we do every day) and really go to town with our garnish. While we are all for mixing our drinks quickly and serving them, sometimes it is fun to take a little time and put on a show. We chopped the ice in the blender so it was nice and snowy and then crafted a fancy garnish of a Cara-Cara half-circle, two maraschino cherries and a mint sprig. Good fun and our reward was a an attractive, albeit very strong, cocktail. The perfect thing to get us back on track.
(From Trader Vic and Beachbum Berry)
- 2 oz. fresh orange juice
- 1 1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 oz. orgeat syrup
- 2 oz. light rum
- 1 oz. brandy
- Crushed ice
- Fruit and mint for garnish
- Crush the ice in the blender, then add the liquid ingredients and blend for 10 seconds. Pour into a large wine glass, Collins glass or tiki mug. Garnish with fruit and/or mint. Serve.
- Mai Tai Sorbet (putneyfarm.com)
- Bringing Tiki Back to the French Quarter (wgno.com)
- Ancient Mariner (bcaverly.wordpress.com)
- 6 Tiki Cocktails You Can Get Tipsy On Right Now (refinery29.com)
- Cocktails for a Crowd by Kara Newman – New Cookbook (thekitchn.com)
- Mai Tai (cocktailtube.net)