Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Bahama Mama

     This is a favorite cocktail in the Bahama's, but with no real history as to it's origin.   There are as many recipes for the Bahama Mama as there are bartenders in the Bahama's. but it is still a large amount of rum and a variety of fruit juices.

Basic Bahama Mama
  • 1 1/2 oz Light Rum
  • 1 1/2 oz Gold Rum
  • 1 1/2 oz Dark Rum
  • 2 oz Sour Mix
  • 2 oz Pineapple Juice
  • 2 1/2 oz Orange Juice
  • Dash of Grenadine
Place all ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake til thoroughly mixed and pour into a tall glass and garnish with an orange slice and a cherry.

  What has been called the "Original Recipe" is significantly different from the more modern recipes.
     "Original" Bahama Mama
  • 1/4 oz 151 Rum
  • 1/4 oz Coffee Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz Dark Rum
  • 1/2 oz Coconut Rum
  • 4 oz Pineapple Juice
  • Juice of 1/2 Lemon
Shake all ingredients and strain into a chilled tumble with ice.   Garnish with a strawberry and cherry.

My own version takes from several of the recipes that I have seen in the past.
     Bahama Bob's Bahama Mama
  • 1 oz Light Rum
  • 1 oz Dark Rum
  • 1 oz Overproof Rum
  • 1 oz Nassau Royale
  • 2 oz Pineapple Juice
  • 1 oz Sour Mix
  • 1 oz Cranberry Juice
Shake all of the ingredients over ice and strain into a tall glass filled with ice.   Garnish with Orange Slice and a cherry.

     As you can see there are a great number of recipes for this great Bahama's cocktail that are all fitting to the palate of a huge number of tropical rumstylers.     ;o)

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Por Cuba Libre: Free Cuba or a Great Cocktail?

    The Cuba Libre's origin is as varied as many other cocktails of the period, but the one sure thing is that was originally concocted by U.S. Soldiers while in Cuba.     There are stories if the cocktail appearing in 1898 at a party to celebrate the Independence of Cuba from Spain.    "Cuba Libre" was the battle cry of the Cuban Liberation Army during the Cuban War for Independence that ended in 1898 The story of the off duty soldiers in 1898 has some holes in it being that there was no Coca-Cola in Cuba until 1900.     According to a deposition by Fausto Rodriguez, it wasn't until August of 1900 that the Cuba-Libre was first mixed in a Havana bar.     The story has it that a member of the U.S. Signal Corps was the first to mix the cocktail, and he is only known as "John Doe".    It seems that only Cuba has the real story of how this cocktail emerged into the populous.

     It took the "Tiki Pop Culture" growth in the United States for the popularity of the cocktail to really take off.     In 1945, the Andrews Sisters recorded a song named for in ingredients that made up the cocktail.     "Rum and Coca-Cola" as a song and as a cocktail swept the country.    Both of the ingredients is the post -war era were cheap and this didn't hurt the growth in popularity of the cocktail.     Today this is still one of the more popular cocktails here in America.

     Cuba Libre
  • 2 oz. of Blanco or Gold Rum
  • Juice of 1/2 Lime
  • 4 oz. Coca-Cola
Place all ingredients in a "Collins glass" with ice and garnish with a lime.
     If you talk to the Bacardi folks, it was originated with "Bacardi Gold Rum", if you talk to the Havana Club , it was made with "Havana Club Light Rum", thus the mystery  continues.    Like all good cocktails everyone wants to be the originator, and as a result the story becomes so murky that the truth will probably will never be known.

     Modern Day "Rum and Coke"
  • 2 oz Light Rum
  • 2 oz Cola
  • 2 drops of Bitters (Optional)
  • Lime Wedge
Mix all the ingredients in a "Collins glass" and garnish with the lime wedge.

      No matter what you call it or how you mix it, this is one of the true classic cocktails and a great "go to" cocktail for anyone wanting a refreshing drink.     ;o)


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Pat O'Brien and his Hurricane

     The Hurricane Cocktail was first made by Pat O'Brien in the 1940'sa as a means to dispose of an inventory of rum that wasn't selling very well in those days.    Whiskey and Scotch were the liquors of choice in those days and a cocktail that used rum in large quantities was the answer to the problem.     In the days after prohibition there was little whiskey available for the bars, and if you wanted a bottle of whiskey, you had to buy a case of rum at the same time.   It seems that where there is a need to reduce the inventory of a particular liquor, a creative drink innovator pops up and creates a cocktail to solve the problem.     I remember the "Rumrunner" as another example of a cocktail emerging from a similar problem.

     The original recipe is said to have put 4 ounces of rum with 2 ounces of  passion fruit syrup and s2 ounces of lemon juice.    The concoction was then placed in a glass shaped like a hurricane lantern and thus the name for the cocktail.       Unfortunately the original cocktail seems to have been lost in the shuffle of time and mixocology.     Today there are as many recipes for this famous cocktail as there are bartender's mixing them.
      Patty O'Brien's Hurricane
  • 4 oz. Dark Rum
  • 2 oz. Passion Fruit Syrup
  • 2 oz. Lemon Juice
Shake with ice and strain into a Hurricane Glass half filled with ice.  Garnish with orange slice and a cherry.

In 1944 Pat O;Brien  trademarked his "Hurricane Mix in packets that you could as the story goes just add a bit of rum to and you would have a "Hurricane Cocktail" at home.    The real problem lies in that you cant even get an "Authentic Hurricane" even at it place of origin.    

     There is "Hurricane " in the Bahama's that is a different cocktail made from 151 rum, Irish Cream, and Grand Mariner, that is commonly found in many bars in Nassau.     There are several variations of this cocktail also as you travel around the Bahamas.

     Bahama Bob's Hurricane
  • 1 oz. Wray & Nephew Overproof Rum
  • 1 oz. Dark Rum
  • 1 oz. White Rum
  • 1 oz. Amaretto
  • 1/2 oz. Orange Juice
  • 1/2 oz. Pineapple Juice
  • 1 oz. Cranberry Juice
Shake all ingredients over ice and strain into a pint glass filled with ice.    Garnish with an orange slice and a cherry.

     This is only one of the thousands of recipes fora "Hurricane" today, but you will find the spirit of Patty O'Brien in all of them you get to experience today.     ;o)

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Conch Republic: Tee-Hee-Hee

     The Conch Republic is if you will pardon the expression a "micronation" that was formed as a "tongue-in-cheek secession by the City of Key West on April23, 1982.     Though it is said to have been a "tongue-in-cheek" secession, there were very serious issues that motivated the action.     It was originally motivated by a roadblock setup by the U.S. Border Patrol at the "Last Chance Saloon"in Florida City that was a major inconvenience  to the residents and definitely driving the tourists away.     The tourists and residents alike were very frustrated as the Border patrolmen would search under seats, in trunks, and glove boxes fro"illegal aliens".     This roadblock caused a 17 mile traffic back-up and had the Keys paralyzed.     The media started a series of stories about this unpresidented action by the Border Patrol within the United States.

     The Owner of the Last Chance Saloon, Skeeter Davis call his friend Mayor Dennis Wardlow of Key West to let him know what was going on there in Florida City.     The community leaders gathered around the Mayor to discuss what could be done to solve the problem that was chocking the life out of an infant tourism industry in Key West.     As a result of the meeting the "legal" route was chosen to solve the problem.   They, Mayor Wardlow, Dave Horan, and Ed Swift got aboard Dave Horan's plane and flew to Miami Federal Court.     The Federal Court refused to enjoin the Border Patrol's from treating the Keys "like a foreign country".    Upon leaving the court room they were met a a mass of media that were screaming at the Mayor " what are you going to do"?    Ed Swift leaned over to Mayor Dennis Wardlow and told him to "tell them "We are going to go home and Secede" and that is exactly what Mayor Wardlow told the press.

    The press followed Dennis and his entourage back to Key West as the news of the Mayor's intentions hit the papers, and the broadcast media.   There was a rumor that the American Flag had been lowered and the Conch Republic Flag raised in ti's place, there were a goodly number of people that were very upset by the events.    After a load of calls had pour into the Mayor's office, a compromise was reached  that the Conch Republic Flag would be flown below the American Flag.

     With the city filled with Federal Agents, Mayor Dennis Wardlow climbed aboard the back of a flatbed truck in front of the Old Customs Building in Clinton Square and delivered the Proclamation to the crowd that had gathered.

Mayor Wardlow's Proclamation

     After the reading of the Proclamation, the new "Prime Minister" declared war on the United States and members of the new government "beat" the federal agents in attendance with stale Cuban bread loaves, then surrendered and demanded foreign aid from the United States.     The Conch Republic is still waiting for the foreign aid, but the roadblock was immediately removed, but the United States Government never bothered to react to the secession.    

     To this day the Conch Republic still celebrates it's independence every year with flags, passports, driver's license's and reenactments of the battles.     In 1990, members of the Tourism Board declared April 24th be Conch Republic Days.     Where else but in Key West could this have really happened?

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sunday Morning Rising Up

Getting up early Sundays to get everything done has some real advantages once in a while when you get one of those spectacular sunrise we get here in Key West.     This makes it easy to get going and tends to make me smile on a working day.     ;o)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Caipirinha (Kie-purr-REEN-yah)

Cachaca in Storage
Cachaca Pot Stills
    The Brazilian National Drink and a long time well kept secret is now becoming very popular through out the United States and Europe.     The Caipirinha is made with Cachaca (Ka-sha-sa)  a liquor that is produced for the most part in Brazil.     Of the 394 million or so gallons of cachaca that are produced annually, 390 million gallons are consumed in Brazil.    

     What is the difference between Cachaca and rum?      Cachaca is made from sugarcane juice that is fermented and then distilled.         Most Rum is made from molasses, a by product of sugar production.     This is similar to the Seco Hererrano made in Panama as far as the ingredients and methods from which it is made.     There seem to be several other cane spirits in the South and Central Americas that are very similar and equally as popular in those areas.      One of the restrictions to the Caipirinha's growth is the fact that Cachaca has to be imported as rum.     This is because of the current U.S. importation laws and has caused a number of protests and the Cachaca being imported as "Brazilian Rum".

     Enough of the history and the primary ingredient, lets talk about the Caipirinha itself.    The name means "country bumpkin or hillbilly".    This cocktail is very popular among the Brazilians and one of their best kept secrets for a long time.     A very simple cocktail to make,  and fast growing out side of Brazil these days.

  • 1 2/3 oz Cachaca
  • Quartered  lime
  • 2 teaspoons crystal sugar
Place the lime and the sugar in an "Old Fashion Glass" and muddle.   Fill the glass with crushed Ice and add Cachaca.  Garnish with a lemon.     Vodka can be substituted in place of the Cachaca, make it a "Caipiroska".

     I know that I make a couple of substitutions at the Rum Bar in our recipe for Caipirinha.
Rum Bar Caipirinha
Caipirinha Cocktail
  • 1 1/2 oz Cachaca
  • Juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1 oz cane syrup
Place lime and cane syrup in a "cocktail glass" and fill with ice, add cachaca and shake.    Rim the glass with "sugar in the raw" and garnish with a lemon slice.

     No matter how you make it this is one of those really refreshing drinks for a hot day that isn't overly sweet.     Find a good bar that knows how to make this cocktail and get out and enjoy it.

Friday, June 24, 2011


     This is one of those days that seems to speak for itself.     For most folks it marks the end of the week, for others like myself it's the middle of the week, but it seems to bring some excitement to everyone's minds.     Even though it is my midweek marker, it means that the bar will be coming to life this afternoon and happy peeps from all over.     They will be arriving in Key West to have a crazy weekend of fun and frolic.      It always amazes me where people arrive here from, and how new ones seem to keep coming week after week, and  from so many different places.    

     Standing behind the bar in Key West is a wonderful place to get to meet and carry on conversations with so many really colorful people.     The funny thing is you never know who you're going to have walk through the door from on day today, or even from one minute to another.     On the day of the "Rapture ", Jesus came in saying "Dad we're running a little late", on another day a pair of fully outfitted "Punkers" dropped by to visit us.     Colorful is the name of the game down here and very much a part of why I really like Key West so much.     It seems that when you think it couldn't get any farther over the top, something pops up that proves you wrong again and your smiles grow larger.    It seems that Friday's are great days to expect the unexpected.

     No matter where you are today, make sure if today really is your "Friday,"get out and have some fun this afternoon or evening, make sure to let off the steam from your long week.     Be a good rumstyler and do it safely so you can be here on Saturday.     ;o)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Laid Back Summer Days: Second Attempt

     The summer in Key West is a wonderful time to just do as little as possible and get yourself evened out from the hectic season just completed.     There are things that need doing that you couldn't get to during season that you have time to do now.     The real problem is that you've gotten yourself into that laid-back summer mode and you really don't what to do it now.     It will still be there tomorrow, and you really have 3 months to get it all done, so why be in a rush.      I guess that the Blog Site has gone in to the same mode, as it is not allowing me to put pictures up on the blog today.   

     Tomorrow is here and the site is up and running again an I'm able to put up pictures from down here under the Banyan tree.     Don't get me wrong, I like the laid back relaxation of the summer as much as anyone, but the slow down takes time to get use to.      As I wander through Old Town Key West, it is clear that most of the people have gone and the pace is really much slower.    The hard part of this is to get motivated to get the things done that really need doing before they become a real issue.     I guess that is just part of the nature of summer with the higher heat and humidity.      Today I am up early so I can get a couple of projects completed before it gets too warm and my motivation wanes.      This feels good to me because when I get behind, I get frustrated and it seems that the hurrieder I get the behinder I become.      So I'll just get out and do the things that have to be done today and take the afternoon to have some fun at the Rum Bar with all my customers. 

     Here's to a safe and easy going summer and a bit of rumstylin' in Key West this year.     Hope to see all of you here at sometime very soon to have some laid back Key West summer fun.     ;o)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Season is Ending and the Dog Days are Arriving

Hello, I'm Nigel
     Key West is headed into that annual transition from season to summer.     A lot of things are happening during this time of year.     Tourists start to disappear as the weather up North starts to warm up and they can play at their own favorite summer spots.     Hurricane season is underway and many of the winter residents have boarded up their places and gone off to their summer places elsewhere.     The nautical group that has insurance that does not allow them to be below the 24th parallel during hurricane season have gone away also.      Basically Key West has been left to the dogs to keep things going during this time of year.

 a great day for a cruise

Way to hot out there today
     Welcome to Nigel's life here in Key West as the summer comes upon him.     He spends his time waiting for the right weather to come out of the air conditioned cabin of his boat so he can play along  the docks.      Today might be my day to take the boat out and head for the Marquesas Keys for a day of sun and beaches.      This dog's life is too hard for me so many decisions to be made and these dog days never seem to last long enough for me to enjoy.      Maybe next week, I'll bet that I can get some friends together and make a real party of it then.      That seems like a better idea.

Hey John, what's happenin'
      I guess that I'll be more practical and hang out with my friends on the back of the boat  and share some stories  with my friends, maybe have a cocktail or something.      Hey John, looks like you just got your hair cut, what else has been happening  in your world.     This life is just what the vet ordered for me, cool breezes, friends and a comfortable place to rest my weary body.    There is so much peace and quiet around here this time of year that it begins to wear on me a bit, but my dog days will to soon be over and the rat race will get started again.   I got to be careful of what I wish for, time to settle back and chill.

Nothing like a rum and tonic and friends

This is what I mean now

     I guess that it is time to get out and see if anyone is over at the Hurricane Hole, it's just about happy hour and most of my friends that staying here this summer should be there by now.      I can't wait to belly up to the bar and spin some yarns with everyone, there might even be a couple of nice lady dogs that I can chat with.         With my luck this time of year it will just be a bunch of guys telling their fishing stories and tossing back a bunch of cold brewsky's.   That can be fun as well, no matter who is there I'm going to have a great evening with my friends.

     How in the world can I ever stand three more months of this before things start picking up again and I have to party hardy again with all of the tourists and snowbirds.     I guess that it is just a dog's life and the role I was destine to play.     I'll just hang and make the best of it.     Happy summer for all of us that get to stay here and play.     ;o)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Bahama Bob's KeyZombie

Bahama Bob's KeyZombie
Made in the tradition of Don the Beachcomber's time honored recipe with a little KeyZ twist to it.
  • 1 oz Siesta  White Rum
  • 1 oz Myer's Dark Rum
  • 1/2 oz Plantation Barbados 151 Rum
  • 1/2 oz J.D. Taylor's Velvet Falernum
  • 2 drops of Aguardiente Anisette Rum
  • 1/2 oz Pomegranate Liqueur
  • 2 drops Angostura Bitters
  • 1 1/2 oz Pineapple Juice
  • 1 1/2 oz whit Grapefruit Juice
  • Juice of 1/2 Lime
  • Splash of Barrett's Ginger Beer
Combine all of the ingredients except the ginger beer in a shaker with ice cubes and shake thoroughly and strain into a tall glass filled half full with crushed ice.     Add Barrett's Ginger Beer to taste and garnish with a orange slice.     Enjoy this taste of the Tiki Era.     ;o)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The First Checker Cab

1923 Checker Cab
     The first Checker Cab was produced by Checker Cab Manufacturing Company of Kalamazoo, Michigan on this date  in 1923.     And why is that an important thing to a Rumstyler?     A good rumstyler is a responsible drinker and takes cabs home when they have had too much to drink, and a little history about  the early and very important cab marques is something of interest.

     Morris Markin (Checker Cab)and John Hertz (Yellow Cab) were the two major mogul in the Chicago and New York taxi business in the early days.     The story of the cab companies is a long and drawn out battle of "fare wars" and anti-trust suits, but a colorful past has only lead to a service that all of us rely on on a fairly regular basis.    

     What is this all about any way, a slow Saturday that lacks a good story, or is there something else behind the production of the first Checker Cab?     I guess it is your decision as to what I have in mind.    The real important thing is to use the taxi when you are not in a condition to drive, the life you protect might be mine.   ;o)

Friday, June 17, 2011

June 17th National Flip-Flops Day

     This day is a charity promotion for "Camp Sunshine",  a very good cause helping terminally ill children by the "Tropical Smoothie Cafe", it brings up a subject that is of interest to my tropical nature.

Japanese Zori Sandals
      There is evidence that a piece of footwear similar to the flip flop was worn as far back as the "stone age".     Many of the early sandals were made of papyrus, rawhide, straw or other materials depending on the region.     The flip flop as we know it appeared after World War II when many American soldiers brought back Japanese Zori sandals to use as slippers around the house.     These were very comfortable and a proud souvenir to wear indoors, but not to be worn outside.   In the 1950's, there were Zori made of rubber that could be seen on the feet of American beach and pool feet, but still no where else.   

The dreaded blow-out
     It wasn't til the 1960's that the sandal named for the popping sound of the sandals as people walked became a household name.     Called "Flip-Flops" in the continental United States, they were also known as "Thongs" and "Slippers in other parts of the world.     The marvelous little sandal that had swept the country was not only comfortable, but a symbol of "Casual" which was the sign of the 60's.     There was one flaw to the sandal though, the "flat tire", the toe strap would either break or pull out and you would be limping home.
Huarache Sandals
     Being of the "surfer persuasion", I went with the Mexican Huarache Sandals that were made of old tires and leather that were "bullet proof" and really cool among the shoreline group.     There are reports of these sandals lasting 10 to 20 years, mine didn't, because of the salt water and leather makes leather rather brittle and the uppers wore out, but the soles are forever.    

The Original 'Flip-flop"
      Today as I walk making the obligatory slip-flop sound as i wander around Key West, I also hear and see the results of the the work done in the 60's by a Brazilian company Havaianas to create and promote the original flip flops that we know and love today.     The ones that I wear today have a big toe protector and good arch support, but "flip-flops" none the less, and my go to footwear.    Keep on Flip-flopping as they are very much a part of rumstylin' to me.     ;o)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Cuban Daiquiri

here we go a gain with another famous cocktail that has a very unusual origin.      They say that an American, Jennings Cox invented the cocktail as a result of running out of gin when he was entertaining American guests in the late 1800's in Cuba.     He also happened to be an engineer at the Spanish American Iron Company mine located in the Village of Daiquiri.  Any guesses where the name came from?     This was pretty much a local drink until a navy Admiral Lucius W. Johnson ( Medical Officer) tried his cocktail in 1909, and he introduced it to the Army and Navy Club in Washington D.C.     The spread of the cocktail increased rapidly throughout the next couple of decades.     Like all stories over the origin of a cocktail there is some dispute as to weather he had some assistance from another Cuban engineer named Pagliuchi, or if the drink was an existing Cuban speciality.    

     Jennings original recipe was just the beginning of a string of recipes most more complex in nature, in the daiquiri family.    
     Jennings Cox's Original Recipe
  • 1.3 oz. light dry Cuban rum
  • .7 oz lime juice  
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 4 crushed ice cubes
Mix the ingredients in a shaker and serve.

     There are many other versions of the daiquiri that have arisen including the soda shoppe slurpee stuff sometimes found in speed bars today.     However there are still a few good bartenders that know the meaning of a good daiquiri.     One of the other really good daiquiri's in the one that was made for Ernest Hemingway at the El Florida in Havana.
     Hemingway's Daiquiri
  • 2 oz. White Rum
  • 3/4 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz fresh grapefruit juice
  • 1/2 oz Luxardo Maraschino Cherry Liqueur
Fill a cocktail shaker with ice add all the ingredients and shake till thoroughly chilled and strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with a lime.

The basic recipe of a daiquiri is 1 strong , 1 sweet, and one sour, these are the directions of the early days of Cuban cocktail mixing, but things got more serious as to the ratios with time.    Today the Daiquiri has shown a resurgence in America especially in the South Florida area.     Should you be in Key West stop by the Rum Bar for some Daiquiri lore and some creative "Keys Daiquiri's".     ;o)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Rum Swizzle from Bermuda

The Swizzle Inn Bailey's Bay Bermuda
The Rum Swizzle is the "National Drink of Bermuda", but it's history is a bit cloudy like most of the really good cocktails.     Swizzles have appeared in literature since the late 1700's from places like Fort Ticonderoga, New York, Saint Kitts and Great Britain, Bridgetown, Barbados in the mid 1800's, as well as St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands in the early 1900's.     These early versions of the swizzles were typically mixed with a v shaped stick that was rotated with the palms of your hands.    Most of the swizzles contained rum diluted with water and some aromatic ingredients added. 

Today's Rum Swizzle is said to have been created at the Swizzle Inn  in 1932 and so they say the "rest is history".    The motto of the Swizzle Inn is "Swizzle Inn, Swagger Out", and also known as the "Home of the Rum Swizzle".     Different bartenders like all another cocktails have different interpretations of the Rum Swizzle, but most of them have Gosling Black Seal Rum, a Gosling Barbados Rum (One that I haven't been able to find in the U.S.) fruit juices ( Orange, Pineapple, and Lime) and a flavored sweetener like falernum or grenadine.     The drink is often make in a "pitcher" batch and then strained into a cocktail  glass with an orange and cherry garnish.  

     There seem to be a few recipes out there in publication, but the Original from The Swizzle Inn seems to be the most realistic.
               Rum Swizzle  
  • 4 oz. Gosling's Black Seal Rum
  • 4 oz. Gosling Barbados Rum
  • Juice of 2 Lime Juice
  • 5 oz. Pineapple Juice
  • 5 oz. Orange Juice
  • 2 oz. Bermuda falernum
  • 6 dashes Angostura Bitters 
Mix in a pitcher with crushed ice, shake vigorously until a frothing head appears.     Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with a orange slice and a cherry.  ( Serves 6)

     A later version sourced from Gosling Brothers Ltd.:

        Bermuda Rum Swizzle
  • 2 oz. Dark Rum
  • 1 oz. Lime Juice
  • 1 oz. Pineapple Juice
  • 1 oz. Orange Juice
  • 1/4 oz. Falernum
Shake all ingredients wit Ice and strain into an ice filled highball glass, and garnish with an orange and a cherry.

     There are other recipes that use simple syrup or grenadine to substitute for the falernum, but those ingredients are not the same.     There is really no substitute for the falernum.   Falernum is rather hard to find, but it is available as an alcoholic (J. D. Taylor's Velvet Falernum) or a non-alcoholic (Fee's Falernum Syrup) version, and either will make a fine drink.     This is another of the classic cocktails that can be done with relative ease at home or be made in the bar for your enjoyment.    Stop by your favorite tropical bar and ask for one, it they don't have the recipe, you do so show them so they can make it for you.     ;o)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Goombay Smash

     There is controversy over The Goombay Smash's origin as well as the origin of many other popular cocktails.     Smashes are not a new concept, the early ones resembled a mojito, and were made with gin, rum, or whiskey.   The more modern ones contain fruit juices and are made for the most part with rum.      The most popular and probably the most believable of the stories of who created it is that Miss Emily at the Blue Bee Bar in New Plymouth, Green Turtle Cay, Abaco, the Bahamas was the originator.     The other is it was created a fellow named Bernie at a bar in Killington, Vermont Ski Area.     You get to believe which of the stories is true for you, but as for me and on the strength of having had a Goombay Smash at Emily's Blue Bee Bar, and the volume of places in the Bahama's that serve their interpretation of the drink it is hard to believe that it was created anywhere else.

This is one of those drinks that has as many versions of the Goombay Smash as there are bartenders.     There are 3 common threads in the majority of them, Coconut Rum Apricot Brandy, and Pineapple Juice.     From there the recipes vary tremendously.      The drink as a light and flavorful touch that brings together several flavors in a very refreshing and harmonious fashion.      The drink is to the Bahama's what the Painkiller is to the Virgin Islands, you will find them at every bar and slightly different in the ingredients they contain, but most of them are very good.  

The rum specified for this drink is usually a "dirty rum" meaning a amber or dark rum, but it could also mean a spiced or gold rum.   That term seems to fit any rum that isn't a blanco or white rum.     The original recipe is a secret, but it is believed to contain:
  • Coconut Rum
  • Apricot Brandy
  • "Dirty Rum"
  • Pineapple Juice
Many of the interpretations that I have run across in the Bahama's, the Virgin Islands, as well as in the United States is something very close to this:

  • Coconut Rum
  • Apricot Brandy
  • Dark Rum
  • Pineapple Juice
  • Orange Juice
All of the ingredients are shaken in a shaker with ice and poured into a Collins glass and garnished with a orange and a cherry.

     There are, like I said as many recipes as there are bartenders, so find one that fits you and sit back and enjoy it.     By the way thank Emily for this fine cocktail if you should happen to get by the Blue Bee Bar.   ;o)

Monday, June 13, 2011

Quirky Key West and the Pride Prade

     Key West is well known for being a quirky town and it will have a parade to celebrate things that are important to it's residents.     This week is "Gay Pride Week", and it culminated with the "Pride Parade"  every year.     This is one of the more colorful parades and one of the more fun parades that happens here in Key West.     This is best told in pictures, so that is what I am going to do. 

Like I said, a picture is worth a thousand words and I guess that these just about say it all.     Congratulations to the Gay Community for putting on a great event this past week and I sincerely hope that everyone involved had a great time.   ;o)