Monday, May 4, 2009
Cinco de Moai
According to the ads in the local free weekly paper, I’m supposed to be celebrating Cinco de Mayo somewhere that offers both Tequila and Mexican beer in colossal quantities for very reasonable prices. As appealing as I find stock photos of bikini-clad women with sombreros Photoshopped on them, I decided to ignore them and the ads they populate in favor of other diversions.
Diversion #1 was spending a chunk of Saturday afternoon watching the Kentucky Derby and some of the pre-race hype on TV. I don’t know squat about horses or why they like to run in circles, but it gave me an excuse to brush up on my Mint Julep technique.
Diversion #2 was using the Bourbon I had leftover from Diversion #1 to continue tinkering with a recipe I’ve been playing with for awhile. It’s a tiki-style concoction that features a conspicuous lack of rum*, but still (to me anyway) has the requisite “tiki taste.“
1.5 oz. Bourbon (I used Bulleit)
.75 oz. Agwa de Bolivia coca leaf liqueur
2 oz. unsweetened pineapple juice
.5 oz. simple syrup
.25 oz. cinnamon syrup
¼ tsp. Absinthe
2 dashes Angostura orange bitters
Shake with ice and strain into ice-filled double old-fashioned glass.** Garnish with orange wheel and any other tiki-themed paraphernalia that looks fun.
The secret weapon here is the Agwa, and I think it’s something that should be in every tiki drink enthusiast’s arsenal. It’s got a distinctive flavor- mellow, herbal, somewhat sweet, and with a borderline medicinal snap. It’s pleasing on it’s own, but it mixes so well it’s too much fun to not experiment with. Mr. Bali Hai over at Eye of the Goof apparently thought so too.
So even though I eschewed the fiesta crowd this year, I still think I should get some credit. Tiki drinks are technically south-of-the-border, right?
* I love rum…but I seem to have become enamored of rum-less tiki drinks lately.
** For bonus points, double the recipe and dump it into a Moai-shaped mug!