New Site Feature: The (De)Evolution of the Hawaiian Mai Tai

An important piece of cocktail journalism is launching this week with my article in the latest issue of Exotica Moderne, available today at the Tiki Caliente weekend event in Palm Springs.

The article describes how the Hawaiian Mai Tai evolved from 1953 to present day and also explodes several myths.

  • The Royal Hawaiian Mai Tai was born with Pineapple Juice in 1953.
  • Nobody knew the ingredients for a Mai Tai, so they made due with whatever they had.
  • Trader Vic kept the recipe for a Mai Tai secret until 1970.

All of the above are not true.

Just this week I saw two fresh articles that stated that Trader Vic himself added pineapple juice when he brought the Mai Tai to Hawaii in 1953. This is clearly not correct based on my research, and the Royal Hawaiian isn’t documented to have added pineapple juice until 1972!

So, we’ll be doing our best to get the word out about this. As a starting point, you can catch my appearance on the Pod Tiki Podcast episode from last week. 

Read the Article Online

Since the article was submitted for print publication, we’ve uncovered additional details on the history of this iconic cocktail. Those added items are now included on the version of the article now available on this website:

Experience the Presentation at Tiki Kon

We’ll have even more historical details and context in my presentation at Tiki Kon in July. Come join us if you’re attending and weekend passes for Tiki Kon are still available.

I’m always on the hunt for more historical details. Leave a comment or send me a message if you have any details or breadcrumbs for us to follow.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *