So far, most of the classic cocktails we've posted are from the pre-prohibition era, which represented the first cocktail boom. In the 1950s and '60s, there was a second cocktail boom in America, which was brought on by the tiki culture craze. Tiki cocktails are usually made with rum but often with split bases; a mixture of aged and white rum is common. Tiki drinks are often served in special tiki mugs with a number of garnishes.
The Mai Tai is considered by many to be the quintessential tiki drink. The invention of the drink is a contentious issue; both of the men considered to be the founders of the tiki movement, Trader Vic and Don the Beachcomber, claim to have come up with the Mai Tai.
Tiki drinks tend to be fairly sweet and usually have lots of citrus, making them fairly easy-drinking summer cocktails. They often also contain overproof rums so that the booze cuts through the other flavours. The Mai Tai uses lime juice as the acid and almond-flavoured orgeat syrup as the sweetener, with curaçao adding sweetness and subtle orange flavour. While we recommend triple sec for most of our cocktails, the Mai Tai is one where a sweeter curaçao is also quite nice.
What you need
- 1 oz. white rum
- 1 oz. dark rum
- 0.75 oz. lime juice
- 0.5 oz. curaçao
- 0.5 oz. orgeat
- lime wheel for garnish
How it's made
Combine the ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a rocks glass full of ice. Garnish with the lime wheel.
We haven't yet found a recipe for homemade orgeat that we like, but if you buy some from a specialty grocery store or from the internet it will keep for a while in the fridge.