Top Nine for 2022 on Instagram

For those of us who still value photos on Instagram, here are my top nine most liked photos. Thanks to all the followers and lurkers, plus my relentless almost daily posting, I received 38,400 likes in 2022.

  1. Royal Hawaiian Mai Tai
  2. Authentic Mai Tai costume
  3. Inside Passage 📷:@juliebeane
  4. Tiki Ti
  5. Save Trader Vic’s London (repost from @savetradervicsldn)
  6. Trader Vic’s Tiki Stem Coupe with Blue Caribbean Cocktail
  7. My Hawaiian Mai Tai presentation at Tiki Kon 📷:@juliebeane
  8. Mai Tai in Trader Vic’s San Jose Airport 1st Anniversary glass
  9. Cocktail at California Gold bar in San Rafael

Killer Mai Tais, Literally

There’s a key plot point in the new season of American Horror Story: NYC on FX/Hulu. There is a serial killer at loose but he only seems to be killing men who order Mai Tais at bars.

No, I’m not joking. Thank you to Amanda Hastings for the heads up on this detail.

Look, haven’t we already suffered enough with bad Mai Tais over the years? Now we have to deal with looking over our shoulders and worrying about copycat killers!

This kind of show isn’t really my bag though, Mai Tai or no Mai Tai. If someone wants to send me spoilers via DM I wouldn’t mind knowing how this turns out. Maybe the killer has a grudge against Trader Vic or is simply a Martini fanatic.

This brings new meaning to the phrase “Mai Tai Till I Die.”

Fetch Me a Mai Tai, Ping-Pong

RIP Angela Lansbury

Beloved actress Angela Lansbury died today at the age of 96. The actress was most known for appearing on numerous productions on Broadway and in later years as the star of the Murder, She Wrote television series.

The role I most associate with Lansbury was as Elvis Presley’s mother in the movie Blue Hawaii. Her character was grating at times, though Lansbury convincingly played the mother despite being less than ten years older than Elvis.

Blue Hawaii has some great music and pretty good performances by Elvis and costar Joan Blackman. And of course some gorgeous scenery of Hawai’i. Less good things can be said about the stereotypical and (currently viewed) racially insensitive portrayal of the Hawaiian and Asian characters in the film, notably the Chinese manservant Ping-Pong. Though, the stereotypical portrayal of Lansbury’s character of a Southern wife and mother probably won’t be viewed positively by many as well.

The line that is most memorable is when Lansbury’s character asks for a couple of Mai Tais. I mean it is just so ridiculously awful and insensitive today to hear her say “Fetch me a Mai Tai, Ping-Pong” that just have to shake your head.

Mai Tai Punch Lip Balm

Some of you know my previous claim to fame was as the founder of Lip Balm Anonymous back in 1995. Did a bunch of media appearances including being the focus of a two part investigative report on the Daily Show back in ‘98 (not joking…). The addiction is real, even if the tone isn’t serious.

So we have to thank our longtime friend @wyrdnet for sharing this one with us. I mean what’s worse than addictive lip balm? Addictive flavored lip balm that also is an example of a terrible Mai Tai.

Stay away, folks. Stay away.

Exotica Moderne Issue 15

The new issue featuring cover art by Shag is launching tomorrow at Tiki Caliente. If you’re attending, be sure to pick up a copy! The issue ia now available for mail order as per the usual release process via

Issue 15 is maybe the best one yet, featuring some great articles about Shag’s Palm Springs house, the tiki revival, Modernism Week, Frankie’s Tiki Room, plus the usual great content from regular contributors Tiki with Ray and Tiki Lindy. The issue also includes great music reviews and original cocktails from the likes of Marie King and Rory Snyder. Plus a great *centerfold* in this issue that is not to be missed. And so much more.

You can also read my article about the (De)Evolution of the Hawaiian Mai Tai, which I think is an important piece of cocktail journalism. Having the article published in Exotica Moderne adds to the legitimacy and value of the research and we are grateful to Ken Holewczynski for providing space in the issue as well as his design/layout expertise to bring the text to life.

Don’t miss Issue 15 of Exotica Moderne.

Mai Tai Fighter

I had one of these at the special “May the Fourth” event at Sessions last year, when Smuggler’s Cove did some special cocktails and also did rum tastings. It was a really great event, my first time seeing some old friends in a long time. And for one, the last time.

I attempted to reverse-engineer the Mai Tai Fighter, which was a SC Mai Tai with a Demerara Rum float (Smuggler’s Cove used OFTD). Not sure how much to float; I may have used too much, but it tasted great.

Mai Tai Fighter
Standard Issue SC Mai Tai
1½ oz Denizen Merchant’s Reserve Rum
Float with 1 oz Lemon Hart 151 – Red Label Sith Edition

Such a great cocktail that Grogu barely shared any. Next, I’ll try to get that metal ball from him.

Happy May the Fourth to all that celebrate.

NFL All-Stars Compete for Unofficial Mai Tai Drinking Record

The National Football League’s annual all-star game, the Pro Bowl, was held annually for many years in Honolulu. Though the venue site now rotates between different cities, another sort of competition emerged amongst the participants during the years in Hawaii.

According to reports, there was an annual challenge among the players to see who could drink the most Mai Tais in a single day. For many years Tampa Bay’s John Lynch was the unofficial champion with 34 Mai Tais. Hall of Famer Peyton Manning even got into a fist-fight while trying to break the record.

More recently, DeAngelo Hall told the NFL Network that Ronde Barber currently holds the unofficial record. He claims that Barber drank an amazing 42 Mai Tais in a single day.

I know the metabolism of a professional athlete is quite different from the average person, but this number seems impossible to believe. Does this mean that Ronde Barber is an alcoholic? I’d love to know what the limits of human consumption of alcohol are.

Hot Mic: Golfer is Mai Tai Fan

A hot mic captured the feeling of a PGA pro when Patrick Cantlay was captured teeing off at the 17th hole at the Tournament of Champions recently in Hawaii.

“I’ve been waiting for this weather for 40 years! These pampered fucks need to play! All right, Revvy. Two more holes then we can get a Mai Tai.”