It is a tradition at Ultimate Mai Tai Headquarters to make a Mai Tai with a ridiculous number of rums to celebrate Mai Tai Day (2020, 2018, 2017 shown below). Oakland declared the city as being the birthplace of the cocktail and designated Mai Tai Day to to be August 30. So this is the day where true believers make a toast to the Mai Tai and to its inventor, Trader Vic Bergeron. Born in 1944, the Mai Tai is 77 years old today.
While the Mai Tai is best enjoyed with a premium aged rum, this year I decided to spotlight some quality “white” rums that despite their color and lack of years in a barrel are quite wonderful in a Mai Tai. These are all lighter rums that go far beyond the cheap and commonly seen unaged white rums. They are all flavorful expressions of our favorite spirit. Some of these are unaged, such as the overproof Jamaican rums, whereas others are aged up to 3 years and present as a light straw color or have their color filtered out. I used ¼ oz each, for a standard 2 oz rum portion.
From Left to Right:
Myers’s Platinum White
Charley’s JB Trelawny Blend
Denizen Aged White Rum
Three Rolls Estate White Rum
Wray & Nephew Overproof
Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin
Clement Premiere Canne
And since all the rums are white, why not have a little fun and switch out the Orange Curacao for Blue? Giffard Blue Curacao is a quality liqueur and has a deep blue color. The Orgeat is Beachbum Berry’s Latitude 29 Formula, from Orgeat Works.
This Mai Tai does not hit you in the face with the rum, and it is smooth and easy to drink. Happy birthday Mai Tai.