FEATURES | MUSIC | BOOKS | DRINKS | FORUMS | GAMES | LINKS | ABOUT


advertise on Tiki Central

Celebrating classic and modern Polynesian Pop
  [Edit Profile]  [Edit Preferences]  [Search] [Sign Up]
[Personal Messages]  [Member List]  [Help/FAQ]  [Rules]  [Login]
Tiki Central Forums Tiki Drinks and Food The Rebirth of the Zombie: Tasting the legend for the first time
Goto page ( 1 | 2 Next Page )
The Rebirth of the Zombie: Tasting the legend for the first time
martiki
Official Mixologist

Joined: Mar 29, 2002
Posts: 3058
From: http://www.smugglerscovesf.com
Posted: 2007-07-25 12:37 pm   Permalink

Aloha,

I wanted to share with everyone a very special experience I had last week in New Orleans. I had the great pleasure of visiting Stephen Remsberg's house with Wayne Curtis (author of "And a Bottle of Rum: A History of the New World in Ten Cocktails
http://www.republicofrum.com/) and Jeff Berry. Stephen has the largest private collection of rare and vintage rums in the world. Those of you who have read Wayne's book will remember him from the last chapter. We tasted several fine rums, including several long lost New England Rums, and a few pre-Castro Cuban rums. But the main purpose of our mission that night was to recreate the Zombie using Jeff's recently unearthed recipe from 1934 that appears in Sippin' Safari. To not just make it, but to make it with the actual rums from 1934 as called for in the recipe.

I'm not going to reprint the recipe here, because you should buy Sippin' Safari (www.clubtiki.com), but we started with the Lowndes Jamaican (upon tasting, we realized that Appleton Extra would probably be a better contemporary substitute than V/X). He had just one mini of this wonderful rum, so screwing up was not an option. Stephen also had a few minis of the dark Puerto Rican, now an uncommon item. The best sub we thought of at the time was Lemon Hart Jamaican, but since that it unavailable as well, it's not much help. . And for the 151 Demerara, Stephen did have mid-1930s Lemon Hart, which does have a different flavor than todays, a little lighter and woodier in body. For the absinthe, a Spanish example from the 1930s.

So anyway, all of the spirits were exactly what was called for, and all made in the early to mid-1930s. The result was pretty spectacular: dry, tart & dynamic, with bold anise & strong oak flavors, with a dash of cinnamon & bitters. Certainly many of Don's signature flavors, and a showcase of the interplay between good rums.

Here's some pictures:

A fraction of Stephen's Collection:


Stephen very carefully at work:


The finished product (mostly consumed!) and the precious ingredients:


Stephen, myself, and the bum:



Big thanks to Stephen, Jeff, and Wayne for making it an unforgettable experience.


For a little of of the Wayne/Stephen magic:
http://www.goodreads.com/story/show/1049.And_a_Bottle_of_Rum_A_History_of_the_New_World_in_Ten_Cocktails



[ This Message was edited by: martiki 2007-07-25 12:42 ]


 View Profile of martiki Send a personal message to martiki  Email martiki Goto the website of martiki     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
martiki
Official Mixologist

Joined: Mar 29, 2002
Posts: 3058
From: http://www.smugglerscovesf.com
Posted: 2007-07-25 12:44 pm   Permalink

And yeah, that bottle does say Ron Rico! It used to be good rum!

 
View Profile of martiki Send a personal message to martiki  Email martiki Goto the website of martiki     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
stickyii
Member

Joined: May 16, 2006
Posts: 10
From: Pennsylvania
Posted: 2007-07-25 1:02 pm   Permalink

Such an awesome experience. My jealousy sees no bounds!

The 1930s bottles look so cool; I'd take labels like that over all the super-fancy and slick stuff today. Though the Lemon Hart bottles you can find now are quite nice.


 
View Profile of stickyii Send a personal message to stickyii  Goto the website of stickyii     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
pappythesailor
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 07, 2005
Posts: 1564
From: Mass.
Posted: 2007-07-25 1:19 pm   Permalink

I don't want to derail martiki's great weekend topic but while we're on the subject of 1930's zombie recipes. Check this 1938 newspaper with the zombie recipe included:



I showed it Bum who'd seen it before. I didn't care for it.

[ This Message was edited by: pappythesailor 2009-01-07 11:47 ]


 
View Profile of pappythesailor Send a personal message to pappythesailor  Goto the website of pappythesailor     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
GatorRob
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1770
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2007-07-25 1:30 pm   Permalink

Nice. Tasting history! That's as close to a time machine as you'll get, I suppose. I have a recorded show here with Stephen showing how to make a Don the Beachcomber Mai-Tai. Wonderful to see that rum collection. I remember reading that a lot of the labels on his bottles peeled off due to his house flooding during Katrina, but that the contents were intact I think.

 
View Profile of GatorRob Send a personal message to GatorRob      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
PiPhiRho
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 1019
From: Redondo Beach
Posted: 2007-07-25 1:37 pm   Permalink

Wow! Truly the experience of a lifetime! the Zombie has always been a favorite of mine and what I would give to be able to go back to Hollywood in the late 30s and experience an original. It looks like you got as close to that as is actually possible. Jealous congratulations!


 
View Profile of PiPhiRho Send a personal message to PiPhiRho  Email PiPhiRho Goto the website of PiPhiRho     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
martiki
Official Mixologist

Joined: Mar 29, 2002
Posts: 3058
From: http://www.smugglerscovesf.com
Posted: 2007-07-25 3:28 pm   Permalink

I got a PM asking about the differences between this one and the one we serve at FI. We serve the the 1950 Spievak recipe from Intoxica. They have virtually nothing in common, but I like the formula quite a bit. I also think it fits well with modern tastes, and we get a lot of good feedback on it. I also tied for first place at the Tiki Oasis Zombie Competition with the 1950 recipie some years back if any of the six or seven old-timers left on TC remember that.

 
View Profile of martiki Send a personal message to martiki  Email martiki Goto the website of martiki     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
tikicleen
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 11, 2003
Posts: 329
From: ripon: almond capital yet no orgeat
Posted: 2007-07-25 3:46 pm   Permalink

what a fitting way to celebrate your birthday!
(happy belated one btw)

(and im not implying that you resemble in any way/shape/or form a zombie)

i'll shut up now.

_________________
got tiki?

 View Profile of tikicleen Send a personal message to tikicleen  Email tikicleen     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
arriano
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 13, 2006
Posts: 1288
From: Dog Patch - San Diego
Posted: 2007-07-25 6:25 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-07-25 13:19, pappythesailor wrote:
I don't want to derail martiki's great weekend topic but while we're on the subject of 1930's zombie recipes. Check this 1938 newspaper with the zombie recipe included:

http://www.telechron.net/temp/winnipegfreepress10-28-38.pdf

I showed it Bum who'd seen it before. I didn't care for it.



What is "Porto Rican cartadora"? I realize it translates to "gold label," but is that light rum, gold rum, dark rum???



_________________
"I am Lono!"

[ This Message was edited by: arriano 2007-07-25 18:35 ]


 
View Profile of arriano Send a personal message to arriano      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
telescopes
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 06, 2007
Posts: 567
From: Palm Springs
Posted: 2007-07-25 7:43 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-07-25 12:37, martiki wrote:
The result was pretty spectacular: dry, tart & dynamic, with bold anise & strong oak flavors, with a dash of cinnamon & bitters. Certainly many of Don's signature flavors, and a showcase of the interplay between good rums.




I've already made both the 1950 Speivak and the 1958 Caberet Zombie, so after reading your post, I decided it was time to take the 1937 Zombie out for a spin. Wow. Your above description was absolutely on the nose. The Bum compared this early version of the drink to the Colorado River and I am inclined to agree with him. It's good, and it's strong and yet it is missing the refinements made to the Caberet Zombie are very evident; same drink, a few changes - no cinnamon-syrup, the addition of pineapple and Maraschino liqueur and you have a much smoother drink -l a zombie with a much more refined and smoother taste.

I am inclined to agree with you, Martiki, that the Speivak Zombie is an absolutely decent version of this drink. Of the four published Bum recipes, I'd be curious which one he would choose for his own personal drinking pleasure.

I am half way through my 1937 Dick Santiago Zombie and as an artifact of tiki ground zero, I have to say it's definitely worth making and trying. However, as a party drink, I think I'd make up a pitcher of Speivak's. Easier by the numbers and the ingredients are more at hand. Honestly, I still can't believe I had the right ingredients to make these drinks in my liqueur cabinet to begin with.

As a closing note, I have to add that the Pearl Diver is my new favorite Beachcomber drink outted by the Bum. Like the Zombie, it uses some of Donn's secret ingredients and additives, and yet, it is smooth as butter and honey while retaining the touch of bitters, cinnamon, and even a kiss of vanilla and allspice. The folks at TC have been give a real gift in the Bum's latest book... The boards will be hot with new topics for years to come.

[ This Message was edited by: telescopes 2007-07-25 19:46 ]


 
View Profile of telescopes Send a personal message to telescopes      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
the drunken hat
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Dec 20, 2003
Posts: 331
From: Modesto, CA
Posted: 2007-07-25 10:12 pm   Permalink

dude what an awesome opportunity! i'm very envious. sadly i think that one of the only drinks i have yet to try at FI is the zombie. next time perhaps.....
_________________
i ain't drunk.......i'm jus drankin. albert collins


 
View Profile of the drunken hat Send a personal message to the drunken hat  Email the drunken hat     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Urban Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 18, 2004
Posts: 527
From: The Tropical Isle of Manhattan
Posted: 2007-07-26 06:19 am   Permalink

What a fantastic experience- thank you for sharing so the rest of us can live vicariously through you.
_________________
Cheers,
Ray


 
View Profile of Urban Tiki Send a personal message to Urban Tiki  Email Urban Tiki     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
frostiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 14, 2006
Posts: 434
From: Mobile, AL
Posted: 2007-07-26 1:18 pm   Permalink

I'm jealous, and we almost went to NOLA for the taste of the cocktail.

 
View Profile of frostiki Send a personal message to frostiki  Email frostiki Goto the website of frostiki     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
TraderPeg
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Aug 10, 2006
Posts: 91
From: Haunted Hudson Valley
Posted: 2007-07-26 4:01 pm   Permalink

Wow, thanks so much for sharing this unique experience -- with pictures, no less!

My first experiment after ripping through "Sippin' Safari" was the 1956 Cabaret Zombie. I make the 1950 Spievak recipe regularly and it never fails to please. But I really felt like a mixologist when I lined up my 11 ingredients and then tasted the 1956 version -- rich, many-layered. At first I thought the maraschino overpowered it, but then it moved politely aside as the other flavors emerged. And what a wallop. Madame must go lie down now...


 
View Profile of TraderPeg Send a personal message to TraderPeg      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
MrBaliHai
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 01, 2002
Posts: 799
Posted: 2007-07-28 1:21 pm   Permalink

I can't tell you how inspiring this article was. Sippin' Safari represents a new benchmark in tropical-cocktail mixology.
_________________

Weblog:
Eye of the Goof

 View Profile of MrBaliHai Send a personal message to MrBaliHai  Goto the website of MrBaliHai     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Goto page ( 1 | 2 Next Page )
U-Moderate:
  
v1.5

[ About Tiki Central | Contact Tiki Central | Advertise on Tiki Central ]
(c) 2000-2014 Tikiroom.com (tm), Tiki Central (tm)

Credits & copyright infomation