Mai Ta-IPA

This was of the recipes during the segment of “Mai Tai or Not a Mai Tai” during my appearance on the The Rumcast a couple weeks ago. My father likes IPAs like I like Mai Tais so seemed like a perfect opportunity to give this one a try with my parents coming over for dinner.

I gotta say, this was pretty damn good. There was just a hint of the IPA in there, and we used a pretty potent one, the Denogginizer! This is a Douple IPA from local favorite Drake’s Brewing Co. just up the freeway in San Leandro. I’d even say that you could up the IPA to 2 ounces and still keep this light and refreshing.

This was so good, I’m declaring it enough of a “Mai Tai” to go on my running total of Top 10 Mai Tais of the Year.

Mai Ta-IPA
1 oz Lime juice
¾ oz Orgeat (Latitude 29)
½ oz Orange curaçao (Clement)
1½ oz IPA beer (Denogginizer)
1 oz Aged rum (Appleton Signature)
1 oz Light rum (Cruzan)

Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into an ice-filled rocks or Collins glass. Garnish with Luxardo cherries.

Recipe by Jacob Grier and Ezra Johnson-Greenough.

Birthday Dinner at The Kon-Tiki

Took the entire family to The Kon-Tiki for a birthday dinner last night. We’re not really doing indoor dining yet, so we grabbed one of the nice parklets outside. We all love the Kon-Tiki’s amazing Cheeseburger and it always tastes better when freshly served.

We arrived before 4:30 so that sun was still shining. So instead of a Mai Tai I decided to try two of the single-serving frozen drinks. The Uma Uma is Kon-Tiki’s riff on a Pina Colada/Chi-Chi and is always delicious.

I was especially interested in the Frozen Donnie’s Element, a cocktail from Kon-Tiki’s Chris Day featuring dark rum, banana liqueur, coconut cream, and cold brew liquor. Oh this is a really great cocktail – go seek it out.

Thanks to Oakhana regulars Laura Murphy and Woody Miller for the birthday rum dram. Woody asked Antoine Nixon for a recommendation and he picked a Hampden rum from their bird series. I love Jamaican rum so that was an excellent choice. So delicious.

New Jumbo Sized Hay! Straws

I’m loving these new jumbo sized Hay! Straws. I ditched plastic a while back but can’t deal with steel or glass. These don’t get soggy like paper straws and I like the smaller “cocktail straw” sized diameter straws which are great for Mai Tais (5”) or tall drinks (7.75”). These work great but Mrs Mai Tai prefers larger straws.

Now these Jumbo Straws will do the trick, and obviously seem better for frozen drinks that are more in Mrs Mai Tai’s wheelhouse.

Highly recommended.


Light Mai Tai

Riffed a little on this Mai Tai, which leans much lighter than my usual recipe. This is based on some rums I had on hand and I can see how this style might be preferred in scenarios such as Mai Tais by the pool on a hot day. Or even just personal preference.

Light Mai Tai
¾ oz Lime Juice
½ oz Cointreau
½ oz Orgeat (Latitude 29)
¼ oz Simple Syrup
2 oz Ron Barcelo Gran Platinum
Shake with ice and float with ½ oz aged and sweetened Spanish style rum (mine was a multi-rum “infinity bottle”). No garnish.

Saturday Post-Project Ritual

When we have home projects involving bending, squatting, hammering, screwing and otherwise building up a sweat my recovery time ritual is to have a grapefruit soda highball. Inspired of course by the Wray and Ting from Jamaica but typically using Squirt due to local availability and these cute smaller cans.

Of course I love this with Unaged Overproof Jamaican Rum but today I switched it up and used the Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin from Haiti. Still a very flavorful and funky rum, and at 100 proof still plenty boozy. This is a great change of pace and still pairs well with the grapefruit soda.

Friday Daiquiri

I don’t mind the little bits of ice in mine, in fact I prefer it. So I shake with crushed ice and single strain.

This one was pretty damn good and made with Hamilton White Stache, a multi island rum blend the Hamilton Ministry of Rum brand.

Patio Mai Tai at The Kon-Tiki

Quick drive up to Oakland for a Mai Tai on the patio and a peek at the indoor dining situation at The Kon-Tiki. Man, the Mai Tai was really good on the patio, listening to Yacht Rock that the Kon-Tiki is famous for.

Nice to see Chris Day and Chris Parker and of course some of the Oakhana who were doing the indoor thing. After my second shot in a couple weeks, we’ll be indoors too.

New B-Rex Swag

So nice to see Brian and Mary Rechenmacher Trader Vic’s mini-Bazaar on Sunday. So many nice products, but I had to purchase the Collins glass set inspired by the Enchanted Tiki Room and also the cool new Camp Mug. Those are still available from the B-Rex store, so check it out and get those cool glasses and other items before they sell out.

It was so nice to have a quick toe-dip for indoor conversations and to check in with life changes and where everyone is heading. Thank goodness for the vaccines.

Woody Miller Art

Two of the treasures we picked up at the mini-bazaar at Trader Vic’s yesterday. These are from Woody Miller including a wood piece in his signature style. I really love the Moai-inspired mug with a wood style glaze.

Be sure to check out more of Woody’s art in the forthcoming issue of Exotica Moderne magazine, now available for pre-order at Woody is the cover artist and I had the pleasure of interviewing Woody for the article. Some surprises inside.

Looks like we’ll be able to see more of Woody’s work at The Kon-Tiki Room at Palmetto in Oakland, opening very soon. Can’t wait.

With The Kon-Tiki Room opening in the same window as Woody’s cover story, everything is working out as Woody and I planned when we did the interview back in December. Yep, we totally planned this. No luck involved at all.

Sunday Mai Tai at Trader Vic’s

Mrs. Mai Tai and I took our adult sons to get their first COVID vaccine shots in the morning and then we arrived after noon for the Trader Vic’s Sunday Brunch and Mini-Bazaar. We had planned to just do shopping (more on that later) but we spotting a small table out on the patio and out of the sun and the staff was able to seat us without a reservation.

We enjoyed a light brunch, but what I really enjoyed was a freshly prepared Trader Vic’s Mai Tai. So frosty and refreshing. This is the best one so far in 2021.

Mrs Mai Tai enjoyed her Guava Mimosa, and it made a nice bubble bath for the Menehune!

So nice to see so many familiar faces at Vic’s today, some of which I know are toe-dipping back into group indoor dining. We will be in that place soon.