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Tiki Central Forums Tiki Drinks and Food Updates to The Mai-Kai Cocktail Guide on The Atomic Grog
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Updates to The Mai-Kai Cocktail Guide on The Atomic Grog
CincyTikiCraig
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Joined: Mar 31, 2009
Posts: 368
From: Cincinnati, Ohio USA
Posted: 2014-03-28 9:20 pm   Permalink

Hurricane, bravo and well done, as always!!!



 
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Hurricane Hayward
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Joined: Jun 07, 2008
Posts: 681
From: 16 miles from The Mai-Kai
Posted: 2014-04-01 12:04 pm   Permalink

Alright, let's get rolling. Here's one big update and several smaller ones. First up, a comprehensive update of the Samoan Grog review, recipes and history:

SAMOAN GROG
http://www.slammie.com/atomicgrog/blog/2012/03/22/mai-kai-cocktail-review-the-delicious-samoan-grog-wasnt-born-to-be-mild/



I've known for quite a while that the Colonial Grog, not Don's Own Grog, was the true ancestor recipe (Jeff clued me in back when he was writing the book). But I had to patiently wait for "Potions" to be published to see all of his handiwork, including that cool ice shell. So I worked all that great backstory into the review, along with the tribute recipe.

Armed with that recipe and some repeated tastings of the Samoan Grog, I was able to pull together a new tribute recipe. It really shoots down the old theory that blackberry brandy was used in this drink (ala Don's Own Grog). The update makes a lot more sense.

I also experimented with the Ron Carlos well rums discussed above, and this turns out to be a good example of a drink that tastes just fine with those cheaper alternatives. It's gonna taste a little better with premium rums, of course, but my guess is that a mild drink like this likely uses Ron Carlos at The Mai-Kai to keep the price point down. With the rum in such a small dose, along with the tasty juices and syrups, it really doesn't affect the drink that much.


COBRA'S KISS
http://www.slammie.com/atomicgrog/blog/2011/11/20/mai-kai-cocktail-review-cobra-kiss-is-an-exotic-taste-explosion-guaranteed-to-strike-your-fancy/



The new menu photo has been added, and I cleared up my confusion on the name by removing references to "Cobra Kiss." It's been spelled without the apostrophe on The Mai-Kai's online menu for years, but I decided to go with the preferred spelling on the printed menu. (On the other hand, I'm sticking with "Mai Tai" instead of "Mai-Tai" just to be consistent with all the other spellings.)


S.O.S.
http://www.slammie.com/atomicgrog/blog/2012/01/29/mai-kai-cocktail-review-patriotism-never-tasted-this-good/

Another one of the great mild drinks, this also now has the new photo. And the drink description has been changed to reflect the new menu's reference to Demerara instead of Martinique rum. I also made sure to mention Three Dots and a Dash in Chicago in the Bilge section, where it lists places to find the best versions of the original ancestor drink.

That should bring the guide up to date with the new menu, and gets me off to a good start on these updates. More will be coming soon. I've also added a link to this thread over on the main guide page, where I'll also be noting the major updates: http://www.slammie.com/atomicgrog/blog/mai-kai-cocktail-guide/

Okole maluna!

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CincyTikiCraig
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Joined: Mar 31, 2009
Posts: 368
From: Cincinnati, Ohio USA
Posted: 2014-04-01 9:29 pm   Permalink

Hurricane,

Do you still prefer Fee's Falernum to other brands? I haven't used Fee's in years and my memory of it isn't fresh, but I've been using BG Reynolds of late and loving it.





 
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Hurricane Hayward
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Joined: Jun 07, 2008
Posts: 681
From: 16 miles from The Mai-Kai
Posted: 2014-04-02 12:06 am   Permalink

Craig,

I have to admit that I haven't tried enough different brands of falernum to give a fair assessment. I do have a bottle of Velvet Falernum that I use on occasion, but I've primarily used Fee Brothers for years. Originally it was because the Bum recommended it in Sippin' Safari, then later because the company was a sponsor of The Hukilau. Free sample bottles aside, I've always found it to be a quality product. And I recall Jeff saying in one of his symposiums that the flavor profile comes very close to what Donn Beach would have used. So that's why I recommend it for The Mai-Kai's cocktails.

That being said, I am very interested in trying other brands, such as BG Reynolds, as well as making my own. It's on my long to-do list.


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[ This Message was edited by: Hurricane Hayward 2014-04-02 00:07 ]


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hiltiki
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Joined: Jun 10, 2004
Posts: 3159
From: Reseda, calif.
Posted: 2014-04-02 5:57 pm   Permalink

Just made the tribute to Mai Kai's Samoan Grog, followed the exact recipe. Great drink, thank you Hurricane Howard, great job. I will be making this drink again.

 
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Swanky
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Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 5062
From: Hapa Haole Hideaway, TN
Posted: 2014-04-03 07:02 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2014-04-01 21:29, CincyTikiCraig wrote:
Hurricane,

Do you still prefer Fee's Falernum to other brands? I haven't used Fee's in years and my memory of it isn't fresh, but I've been using BG Reynolds of late and loving it.



If you search around here, you'll find
a thread from one of the early Hukilau's where we had a Falernum tasting. Tim Spears in ATL had a case of the original Sazerac and it was compared to the available offerings and as I recall it was the Fee and Taylor's mixed that was the most like Sazerac, but Taylor's was the prefered.

This is sort of a Catch-22 thing though. You can make your own and it will be "better" and an amazing flavor. However, it will also greatly change the drinks and was likely NOT what was used in the various places the drinks originated. When you are going through 12 cases of rum a night, you can't make your own!

I use Velvet because it is available. I make my own on occasion and like to use it in Rum Barrels especially.
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Hurricane Hayward
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Joined: Jun 07, 2008
Posts: 681
From: 16 miles from The Mai-Kai
Posted: 2014-04-04 12:43 am   Permalink

Swanky, thanks for the link. I'll have do some experimenting with the 50/50 mix of Fee and Taylor's and try it in a few Mai-Kai cocktails.

The falernum seminar at this year's Miami Rum Fest will be interesting. We'll have to report back our findings.


 
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Hurricane Hayward
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Joined: Jun 07, 2008
Posts: 681
From: 16 miles from The Mai-Kai
Posted: 2014-04-21 12:21 am   Permalink

There's always a lot of interest in the Black Magic, so I made that my next update:
www.slammie.com/atomicgrog/blog/2012/04/04/mai-kai-cocktail-review-the-black-magic-emerges-from-the-shadows-as-a-true-classic/



Along with the new menu photo, I included a bit of history and a theory that perhaps Mariano Licudine was influenced in creating this drink by a very old Don the Beachcomber drink from the 1930s that included lime, coffee and multiple rums. Revealed in "Sippin' Safari," the Jamoca is by no means a great drink, and I wouldn't consider it an ancestor recipe, but it's something to ponder.

More importantly, the update includes a tweaked tribute recipe. For much the same reasons as mentioned in the Samoan Grog tribute, I'm substituting Don's Spices #2 for allspice liqueur, resulting in a slightly richer, sweeter taste (a hallmark of Licudine's take on Donn Beach's drinks). This also accounts for the slight hints of vanilla that are sometimes detectable in the Black Magic.

There are also some expanded tips on coffee, one of the key ingredients in this cocktail. It's tricky getting the flavor just right, but I hope this additional info helps.

One other thing that I didn't have room for on the blog that I thought I'd include here. Note the odd-shaped snifter glass in this photo from August:



It's possible you may get your Black Magic (or Mutiny or Hukilau) in one of these, but don't fret. At some point last year, the traditional large snifter glasses were in short supply (and subject to lots of breakage), so these different versions were purchased to serve as a back-up. Other than the shape, I don't think there's much difference, and I haven't seen them lately, so I don't think it's a cause for concern as big as the crisis several years ago when Sidewinder's Fang glasses were temporarily unavailable. Now, if I could only find out how to get a Rum Julep served in the metal cup shown on the menu (ala the 151 Swizzle).

Okole maluna!


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arriano
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Joined: Jun 13, 2006
Posts: 1299
From: Dog Patch - San Diego
Posted: 2014-04-21 08:53 am   Permalink

Great job as usual, but I think you posted the wrong link.

 
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 999
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-04-21 10:49 am   Permalink


Great stuff!

[ This Message was edited by: AceExplorer 2014-04-21 12:52 ]


 
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Hurricane Hayward
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Joined: Jun 07, 2008
Posts: 681
From: 16 miles from The Mai-Kai
Posted: 2014-04-21 11:22 am   Permalink

Sorry about that guys, the link is fixed above. It turns out that Don's Spices #2 has been lurking in some other drinks as well. More to come.


 
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Hurricane Hayward
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 07, 2008
Posts: 681
From: 16 miles from The Mai-Kai
Posted: 2014-04-23 8:41 pm   Permalink

Up next, a tribute recipe that's been in the works for quite a while. And after reading about the fascinating history of Planter's Punch and Don the Beachcomber in "Potions of the Caribbean," I was inspired to finish updating both the Planters Punch and Special Planters Punch recipes.

The regular Planters review got just basic updates, including the new menu photo:
http://www.slammie.com/atomicgrog/blog/2011/12/01/mai-kai-cocktail-review-this-planters-lacks-the-punch-of-its-special-cousin/

But the Special Planters got a major update, including a new tribute recipe featuring some secret ingredients (Don's Spices #2 again makes an appearance) that explain why it gets a 4 1/2-star rating:
http://www.slammie.com/atomicgrog/blog/2011/09/15/mai-kai-cocktail-review-special-planters-punch-is-tropical-drink-history-in-a-glass/



There's also some new background that looks back at the legacy of the Planter's Punch, plus some theories on how Mariano Licudine came to create this special twist on a classic.

Okole maluna!

[ This Message was edited by: Hurricane Hayward 2014-04-23 20:44 ]

[ This Message was edited by: Hurricane Hayward 2014-04-23 20:45 ]


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CincyTikiCraig
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Joined: Mar 31, 2009
Posts: 368
From: Cincinnati, Ohio USA
Posted: 2014-05-02 11:03 pm   Permalink

Made a Samoan Grog for the first time tonight. I got the ice shell about 80% there, but I need to work on it some more. Great drink, it reminds me of a cross between a Three Dots And A Dash and a Navy Grog.



 
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CincyTikiCraig
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Joined: Mar 31, 2009
Posts: 368
From: Cincinnati, Ohio USA
Posted: 2014-05-03 11:46 pm   Permalink

Did a better job with the ice shell today:




 
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Hurricane Hayward
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Joined: Jun 07, 2008
Posts: 681
From: 16 miles from The Mai-Kai
Posted: 2014-05-04 11:19 am   Permalink

Looks great, Craig. It's certainly a very underrated drink.


 
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