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 Confused About Mai Tais- Kauai'i vs Trader Vics???
Confused About Mai Tais- Kauai'i vs Trader Vics???
IslandSpy
Member

Joined: Jan 31, 2011
Posts: 5
From: Los Angeles
Posted: 2011-01-31 3:36 pm   Permalink

Hello everyone!
I am very confused about mai tais and thought some of the experts could help me out.

Last winter, my fiance and I went to Kauai'i, HI for an engagement trip. There we had mai tais at every restaurant we went (about a dozen different places). The best one was at St. Regis at Princeville. The worst one was at the Smith Family Luau. However, the best and worst still tasted related in flavor, as though they'd been made with similar types of ingredients.

So in Hawaii I caught the 'Tiki bug', and when we got home tried a Trader Vicks pre-made mix, but it was a little strange tasting. I thought maybe I messed something up at home, so we went to Trader Vics a few months ago for dinner & mai tais (we live in Los Angeles).

The Trader Vics mai tai seemed worse than the pre-made mix. It was very, very bitter- It tasted strongly of lime, and was not sweet at all (as if regular limes/juice rather than key limes/juice were used). The color was dark tan with a green tinge. My fiance also thought it was undrinkably bitter (and he usually likes beer).

The mai tais from Kauai'i were sweet, tasted like a mixture of rums and juices, thought not syrupy or too sweet. Many (but not all) had the dark rum floating on top, and all of them, when mixed, were a sort of golden brownish color.

Can anyone explain why the mai tais from Kauai'i were so utterly different? Has anyone else tried a Trader Vicks mai tai and found it to be too limey?
Also, what is a good recipe for the Kauai'i type mai tais? A google search for mai tai recipes is so vast, and every recipe is different- There's no way to tell which one would be like that St. Regis mai tai we're looking for.
Thank you:)


 
View Profile of IslandSpy Send a personal message to IslandSpy      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Rum Balls
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 04, 2004
Posts: 886
From: Portland, OR
Posted: 2011-02-01 06:31 am   Permalink

There are plenty of Mai Tai discussions in this section, so search away. One easy answer for you, though, is that "island"-style Mai Tais have a splash of juice in them (usually pineapple), while the classic/traditional Mai Tai has no juice.
_________________


 View Profile of Rum Balls Send a personal message to Rum Balls      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
CucamongaChango
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 13, 2008
Posts: 264
From: Denver, CO
Posted: 2011-02-01 07:12 am   Permalink

The best of the juice-related "mai-tai" recipes I've ever tried is the Don's Mai-Tai Swizzle.
True, it's not what's considered a "real" Mai-Tai, but for the juice based version, it's a simply wonderful drink.
If you're really interested in this stuff, then get thee a copy of Beachbum Berry's Remixed. That recipe is in there.


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

Joined: Apr 20, 2007
Posts: 339
From: santa rosa, calif.
Posted: 2011-02-01 08:55 am   Permalink

The result of your question will mean that you will soon own a handful of cocktail recipe books, several hundreds of dollars worth of odd ball liqueurs and rums, and a small arsenal of ice crushers and lime squeezers. Just sayin'

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

Joined: Aug 10, 2004
Posts: 8930
From: Anaheim,Ca.
Posted: 2011-02-01 09:19 am   Permalink

most good tropical Rum drinks have Lime juice,
the 2 pair well together.

The Island style Mai Tai is not a True Mai Tai.
But now that you have had it, its what you like.
I guess you are with the General masses.

My Parents had the same reaction to a TVs Mai Tai,
and I had to drink all 3 of them, (Mine and theirs)
so it wasn't an all bad day at TVs.


Jeff(btd)




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

Joined: Jun 13, 2006
Posts: 1290
From: Dog Patch - San Diego
Posted: 2011-02-01 10:04 am   Permalink

The fact is, a Trader Vic's mai tai should be tart. It's made with lime juice. I believe within the cocktail world, it falls in the category of a "sour"

In Hawaii, a lot of places add pineapple juice (I guess to make it seem more "tropical"), which makes the cocktail much sweeter. And these days, the palates of the general public tend to prefer sweet drinks to tart ones.

Perhaps the best solution would be to make a mai tai using a basic Trader Vic's recipe from scratch rather than using the mix or depending upon a Vic's bartender:

1 oz Jamaican Rum (try Appleton's)
1 oz Martinique Rum (try St. James)
1/2 oz Orgeat
1/2 oz Orange Curacao
1/4 oz Rock Candy Syrup
Juice from one fresh lime

Hand shake and garnish with half of the lime shell inside the drink and float a sprig of fresh mint at the edge of the glass.




_________________
"I am Lono!" -- Hunter S. Thompson


 
View Profile of arriano Send a personal message to arriano      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
IslandSpy
Member

Joined: Jan 31, 2011
Posts: 5
From: Los Angeles
Posted: 2011-02-01 10:58 am   Permalink

Thank you everyone for the tips!

I am on the hunt now for that beachbum berry book and the mai tai swizzle recipe- thanks so much:)
It might not be all bad to have the taste of the general mass--Those Kauai mai tais were unbelievable. The TV mai tai from scratch is definitely worth a try- Just ordered some orgeat syrup from Amazon, and luckily, we already have a variety of strange things in our liquor cabinet:)


Its a wonder how exactly the mai tai 'evolved' from the original version to the island variation--They really are 2 completely different animals. Will do a search on older mai tai threads and see what pops up.

Thanks again, and its nice to meet you all:)



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

Joined: Mar 05, 2008
Posts: 323
From: Edmonton, AB, Canada
Posted: 2011-02-01 11:15 am   Permalink

Another option is to take the above from-scratch recipe and add 1 oz orange juice and 1 oz pineapple juice. This is known as the Hawaiian-style mai tai. Some places use grenadine instead of orgeat and coconut rum. Personally, I think that's taking it way too far from what a mai tai should be and should taste like, but it may be closer to what you tasted in Kauai. Just experiment a little and you'll find the taste that's right for you.

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

Joined: Jul 13, 2008
Posts: 264
From: Denver, CO
Posted: 2011-02-01 11:54 am   Permalink

You know... I had to look in Remixed real quick... but it was Vic's Royal Hawaiian Mai-Tai I was thinking of that is probably the best version of the fruity mai-tai in discussion here. Again, not a "real" Mai-Tai, but a damn fine delicious drink.
Sorry for the mistake... but rest assured that the Mai-Tai Swizzle is also a thing of great beauty.
In either case, definitely grab a copy of 'Remixed' and enjoy them all.


 
View Profile of CucamongaChango Send a personal message to CucamongaChango      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
IslandSpy
Member

Joined: Jan 31, 2011
Posts: 5
From: Los Angeles
Posted: 2011-02-01 1:30 pm   Permalink

A lot of recipes are popping up that call for simple syrup or rock candy syrup along with the lime.

Could you just use sour mix? It is essentially simple syrup mixed with citrus (I'd make it at home & use all lime juice instead of lemon).

Would this be applicable? Anyone try sour mix in place of separate syrup & lime juice?


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

Joined: Jan 23, 2011
Posts: 1249
From: Tampa Bay
Posted: 2011-02-01 1:36 pm   Permalink

I don't even add simple syrup bc I've always used commercial orgeat syrups that are plenty sweet already. (shame on me?)
_________________
Mabuhay!


 
View Profile of thePorpoise Send a personal message to thePorpoise  Email thePorpoise     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Hakalugi
Site Administrator

Joined: Aug 10, 2004
Posts: 3085
From: Redondo Beach, CA
Posted: 2011-02-01 1:47 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2011-02-01 13:30, IslandSpy wrote:
A lot of recipes are popping up that call for simple syrup or rock candy syrup along with the lime.

Could you just use sour mix? It is essentially simple syrup mixed with citrus (I'd make it at home & use all lime juice instead of lemon).

Would this be applicable? Anyone try sour mix in place of separate syrup & lime juice?



If you're going to make it at home anyway, just leave out the lime and make simple syrup. By being able to add the sweetener and the lime into a cocktail seperately, you'll have more control over the end result.

And as already stated, depending on the orgeat, you may not even need to add simple syrup.


 
View Profile of Hakalugi Send a personal message to Hakalugi      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
tikicoma
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Jan 16, 2010
Posts: 416
From: wakinekona
Posted: 2011-02-02 12:33 am   Permalink

The Happy Talk Mai Tai from the Happy Talk Lounge at the Bali Hai in Princeville, 1oz lite rum, 1/2 oz orange Curacao, in a tall glass filled with ice fill with
(this makes about a gallon of mixer) 1 quart gauva juice, 1 quart pineapple juice, 12oz pulpy orange juice, 12oz cherry juice and 12oz sweetened lime juice (roses I believe) , swizzle, top with 1 1/2oz (as I remember) dark rum. Then enjoy! I know this is no way near a Trader Vic's Mai Tai but is very refreshing and will take you back to a sunset view, across hanalai bay on down the napalii coastline.
aloha tikicoma


 
View Profile of tikicoma Send a personal message to tikicoma      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
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