DIY Kon-Tiki Cocktail List Completion

Thanks to Chris Day for making me a Virgin’s Downfall at The Kon-Tiki the other night. This Missionary’s Downfall riff features Mezcal, which is why I always avoided it. But, as a matter of fact, it was delicious! Minty and fresh with some complex flavors that truly worked together.

Which means I’ve now sampled all the cocktails on Kon-Tiki’s third menu revision (first introduced in fall 2019), as tracked by the handmade checklist card I printed out over a year ago. I’m looking forward to the new menu that surely is coming soon.

The Kon-Tiki and their sister properties Palmetto and The Kon-Tiki Room announced yesterday that they are going to require patrons to be vaccinated (or have a negative test) starting in August. As of this week you have be vaxxed to sit at the bar, which is what I did and had a great time talking to Jeff Hall and some other barflies. And you can bet that this policy is going to make me more comfortable patronizing these places, as well as being safer for the staff.

It is going to need to start to get a lot more difficult for non-vaxxed folks to have access to nice things, or we’re going to have to do another round of shutdown and business closures.

Mai Tai Appears on Oakland Athletics Cap

A very curious design for this new City Sky Blue Undervisor 59FIFTY hat from New Era and available at Lids.

Firstly, this is an OAKLAND cap, but the bridge is the Golden Gate Bridge located in San Francisco. Not exactly the best way to win over the Oaktown locals.

But turn the cap around and there’s a tropical drink. Not exactly the first thing you typically connect to baseball. But, apparently, this is exactly what you think it is – it’s a tribute to Oakland by featuring the Mai Tai that was invented there in 1944.

The rainbow of colors won’t win over craft cocktail fans, but I’m willing to give New Era a break on this point, if only to make the cocktail design more interesting to look at. At least it features an actual old fashioned glass rather than a hurricane glass.

Thanks to Carlos for the tip on this curious new baseball cap.

Blue Monday?

Have you got a case of the Mondays? Improve your spirit on #MaiTaiMonday by making a Blue Hawai-Tai, the love child of the Mai Tai and the Blue Hawaii cocktails.

Blue Hawai-Tai by Kevin Crossman
1 oz Lemon Juice
½ oz Orgeat
½ oz Simple Syrup
½ oz Blue Curacao
1 oz White Overproof Jamaican (Rum Fire)
½ oz Aged White Rum (Probitas)

Monymusk Special Reserve Rum

I got to taste several of the Monymusk rums recently and decided to pick up a bottle of this blended rum with a minimum age of 10 years. Only about $35, though this isn’t as widely available as Appleton or Myers’s. 

But it is worth seeking out as it has a delicious rich flavor with a hint of spice and only a hint of Jamaican funk. At 40% ABV it is designed for easy sipping or as a mixer in cocktails. This is more akin to Appleton 12 than Smith & Cross, and makes a delicious Mai Tai or Planter’s Punch.

Cocktails at Kon-Tiki

Another fabulous night of cocktails at The Kon-Tiki.

I’m still working on my DIY checklist of all the cocktails on their third published menu, and thanks to Chris Day for going off the current menu and making a Sunken Tugboat. I really enjoyed this Daiquiri style cocktail with a hint of cinnamon. Meanwhile, Mrs. Mai Tai had her favorite, the Uma Uma. I also sampled a freshly prepared Kon-Tiki Mai Tai that was quite delightful and had a rich mouthfeel that I very much enjoyed.

The Best Mai Tai in Orange County

Admittedly, this is not based on exhaustive research. But, I did find the Mai Tai at The Cellar in Fullerton to be quite wonderful.

After we bailed on traveling from Phoenix to Vegas, we hightailed it to a location with a marine breeze. After our jaunt to the Disneyland Hotel, we met up with one of Mrs. Mai Tai’s longtime friends at The Cellar in Fullerton. This cave-like experience was wonderful and significantly more condusive to conversations than the similarly themed Undertow from the previous night. Great cement “rock work” from Disneyland Imagineers circa 1969.

The cocktails at The Cellar were pretty good. The off-menu Mai Tai was rich and flavorful, with a thick mouthfeel. I also tried the Tropic Thunder, served in a gigantic barrel mug for two, though you can ask for a single serving (and a lot more ice). That one wasn’t quite as good but hid the bourbon base quite well behind passionfruit and banana. Mrs. Mai Tai enjoyed her cocktails as did her friends.

Food was expensive and small portioned, but service was outstanding.

Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar

When Mrs. Mai Tai and I were finished with lunch at Tangaroa Terrace, it was about 3:10 pm. The way that indoor seating at Trader Sam’s is working right now is that there’s a line that forms at the check-in station in from of the Terrace and that’s the order to get in. With Sam’s opening at 4:00 pm, there were only about five people in line, so I thought hey, I can wait this out for less than an hour while Mrs Mai Tai does some shopping in Downtown Disney. At around 3:30, the hostess starting taking names and party numbers, which allowed me to browse the Disneyland Hotel gift shop and also to go inside out of the sun.

Inside, it was the same Sam’s we’ve all grown to love. Everyone was so excited to be inside the immersive environment. So many things to look at, and we enjoyed the show offered when the Krakatoa Punch and Shipwreck on the Rocks were ordered. I noticed they still have a few additional rums on the shelf, so I ordered a Mai Tai with Hamilton 86 Demerara Rum. That was a pretty good Mai Tai (and they didn’t even charge me extra). Mrs. Mai Tai had the coconut-forward Piranha Pool and that frozen drink was a hit.

I even got to take the de rigueur Trader Sam’s Bathroom Selfie. So nice to be back.

Tangaroa Terrace Lunch

Mrs Mai Tai and we’re supposed to end our road trip in Vegas overnight yesterday but the heat in Phoenix drew us both to the same conclusion that we aren’t used to 115+ degrees – so we went to Southern California instead.

We landed in Anaheim at around 2:30 and thought we’d give the Tangaroa Terrace a shot for lunch. Thankfully there were a few tables largely in the shade so we had lunch and drinks.

My Mai Tai was made with simple syrup rather than the standard agave syrup, per request. This is a big improvement for me, and it was fantastic. Julie had the Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Rum which is her fave there.

So relaxing out on the patio terrace. It was a beautiful day to be outside.

Undertow

Had a great time at Undertow in Phoenix last night with our tour guide @thetikiboss. I always say, if you can go with a local, do it. Thanks for coming out and showing us the ropes, Ross.

Such an immersive space inside, though we found the sound effects and music to be louder than they could be. But, the decor including some neat special effects really made up for it. Nautical, obviously, but still plenty of tikis.

The cocktails prepared by @ashley.elizabitch and @r_sic were outstanding, as was the service. The Mai Tai was quite excellent with a nutty flavor and balanced set of rums. We loved the other cocktails too.

It is always nice when the hype is met. Certainly was the case at Undertow.