April 15, 2009

♫Rum lifts us up where we belong...♪

What is it about Tiki drinks that makes them so much fun to make AND drink? Is it the ridiculous names they frequently carry? Is it the unusual, exotic ingredients they contain? Is it the goofy garnishes you get to put on them? Who knows. All I know is I love makin' em. Which is why tonight's cocktail is another Tiki drink; the Rum Lift.

This fellow started out life at Don the Beachcomber's in Hollywood in the late '60s, ostensibly as a hangover remedy. I can safely tell you it's just as much fun to drink as a starter.

Rum Lift

2 oz orange juice
1/2 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
1/4 oz fresh lime juice
Dash of Angostura bitters
1 1/2 oz dark Jamaican rum (I cheated a bit and used Barbados)

Shake well with 1 cup of crushed ice, pour (ice and all) into a Collins glass. Garnish as desired, though a maraschino cherry and pineapple spear would not go amiss. Or just slap a bunch of crazy crap on the rim like I did:Rum Lift

There's something missing in this drink, and I'm not sure what...maybe it's the mellower Barbados rum versus the Jamaican. So I did what any sensible person would do. I finished off the first one and tried my hand at a second! I kept everything from the original recipe, but I added three more ingredients:
Dash of orange bitters
1/8 tsp homemade vanilla extract
1/8 tsp pimento dram

And then shake it like a British nanny.
This one is quite an improvement. You get that floral sweetness from the vanilla hiding in the background, and the pimento dram and orange bitters bring it a little extra spice. With the additional flavors, I'd be happy to make this one again in the future...it's got some personality that way.

Additionally, if you wanted to make a non-alcoholic version of this one, you could shake everything together without the rum, pour it into the glass and top it up with ginger ale, stirring to combine. I think it'd still be a good drink, although not nearly as fun without the rum.


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