Funny thing about tiki drinks, when you are in the “real” world of tiki some of the ingredients are hard to find. Orgeat syrup and Falernum don’t grow on trees out here. I should know, I asked a local about the Orgeat trees and he looked at me kinda funny. No Falernum bushes either, go figure….;-)
Happily, the fresh fruit and rum are in good supply and we brought some of our own cooking and cocktail gear- so the eating and drinking has been good (real good, actually). Not so happily, this week’s cocktail is aptly named. It is raining. Hard. Thus we start our adventure in tiki cocktails with the Rain Killer.
The Rain Killer could be called “Tiki 101”, it is as basic of a tiki drink you can get. You can go to any liquor stor and/or supermarket and get the ingredients for this cocktail. And it takes just a few minutes to make. Lime juice, orange juice, pineapple juice, rum, bitters and simple syrup. Think of this recipe as a “foundation” for tiki drinks.
But the Rain killer is still a tiki drink. The whole point of tiki drinks is to have layers of flavor that blend into something more than the sum of its parts. By having multiple fruit juices, liquors, sweeteners and spices you get a drink that keeps you coming back. A common adjective for a good tiki drink is “beguiling”. The best tiki drinks really do take you “somewhere else”, and that is the magic. Famous bartenders / impressarios like Trader Vic Bergeron and Don the Beachcomber created tiki drinks like the Mai Tai and the Zombie that are still with us today. And even in today’s world of advanced mixology, their drinks are still great. (More from these two as we go though the week.) Continue reading