A New Look

April 5th, 2009 by Colonel Tiki

coloneltikilogoIt’s been around a year since the “Colonel Tiki’s Cove” matchbook showed up on the site. Today, We move to a new theme and a new URL. Reset all your pointers to http://www.coloneltiki.com everyone: The Colonel is officially ready for public consumption. Colonel Tikus von Rhothgar was my mother’s maternal grandfather. Tikus’s father came from a line of men who worked in the Dutch East India Company – Tikus himself was born at sea near Palau Tikus in Indonesia (hence his name). I’ve decided to honor him by renaming the entire basement “Colonel Tiki’s Cove.” He’ll also be my nom de boire here at CTDIF, now re-named for him.

So welcome to the new site and new relaunch: The layouts are due to change as I refine them and update them, thanks for coming along. It’s been about 2 and a half years since I started this blog adventure and I hope to continue along for many more.

Look for a new update about our yearly Summer event: Tiki-Kon soon. This year promises to be a load of fun. The secret theme?

Tiki Kon 2009: Tiki Speakeasy

Martin Cate in the WSJ

October 4th, 2008 by Colonel Tiki

I try to make a habit of keeping my posts here primary content. I don’t want to fall in the hole of only talking about what others are talking about, echoing echoed content.

However, there are time when I have to break my habits, especially when a friend gets featured in the Wall Street Journal.

Eric Felton (of How’s Your Drink? ) and columnist at the WSJ today published a column covering The “good” tiki resurgence, tying it a bit into the escapism of troubled economic times.

It is a wonderful information piece — It is quite nice to read about Polynesian Pop where the author gets it Right. I might enjoy the drinks at Trad’r Sam’s more than he, but he is spot on.

Martin Cate and his Forbidden Island get a good mention in respect to their rightful lead of the properly done (hopeful) future of the Tiki Bar.

But don’t take my word for it! Go and read it yourself!

Congratulations, Martin! I can’t wait to see you this Thursday.

Gantt’s Caipirissima

September 21st, 2008 by Colonel Tiki

This week I was happily awarded runner-up status on one of the drinks I submitted to Forbidden Island‘s cocktail competition. The competition was open to Tiki Central members as well as recipients of Forbidden Island’s newsletter.

I along with the other winners will be on Forbidden Island‘s Fall specials menu. I’ll be enjoying having someone other than myself make it when the Mrs. and I attend Tiki Central‘s eighth annual Tiki Crawl, the crawl that started it all.

If however you are far from Alameda or Portland, I share the recipe with you below. I hope you enjoy it as much as I.

Gannt's Caipirissima

Gantt’s Caipirissima
¼ Grapefruit, cut into 3 or 4 pieces (White grapefruit if seasonally possible)
1 oz Cinnamon Syrup (or 2 Tbs Cinnamon Sugar)
2 oz rhum agricole (Clément VSOP preferred)

Muddle grapefruit and cinnamon syrup in a double old fashioned glass. Add 4oz of crushed ice and rhum. Stir to mix and garnish with cinnamon stick.

I name it thus because I’ve long noted the similarties in vegetal flavors (and methods) between cachaça and rhum agricole. Donn Beach had a warm spot for cinnamon and grapefruit — and with good reason: They love each other. Donn also liked the martinique paired with his Mix (Donn’s mix, 2:1 grapefruit juice to cinnamon syrup), so I thought all these separate points of information needed to come together in a cocktail. I name it a Caipirissima (a Caipirinha with rum instead of cachaça) because I’m pedantic. Rhum agricole may be simmilar to Cachaça, but not enough to pretend it warrants the position under the caipirinha umbrella.

The Rongo Bowl

September 7th, 2008 by Colonel Tiki

This year marks the 45th anniversary of Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room, which opened on June 23rd 1963. This was the first attraction to use audio-animatronics1. The Tiki room’s imagineering would become the seed that would later flower into the magic behind the Pirates of the Caribbean and The Haunted Mansion.

As a child (and still as an adult), I would spend most of my time in Adventureland and New Orleans Square; these locations drove my imagination more than any other aspect of the park. I often joke that Disneyland ruined me for my sense of decoration; I feel the over-fantastical theme and attention to detail to be the norm. You can see a basic example of this phenomenon the Monkey Hut and the Buccaneer’s Bathroom at the old house.2

Pele mugBut enough about that, we were talking tiki. For the 40th anniversary in 2003, artists Kevin Kidney and Jody Daily sculpted a number of mugs. You may remember Kevin from his “Miehana” mug (and accompanying beachbum recipe in “Grog Log”). I’m lucky enough to have a Pele mug from this run.

miehanaThe interesting thing is that one mug that was designed was not produced: The Rongo Bowl. Humuhumu wrote about this back in 2006. Well, lucky us. The 45th anniversary was another chance at a run of production and 500 Rongo Bowls were produced. On Monday, June 23 of this past June, Disneyland hosted a collectable event offering a grand selection of 45th anniversary merchandise. I was heartbroken that I could not make it down for the event. My good friend Brian did, however. He was unbelievably kind enough to get me a Rongo Bowl of my very own.

For this great occasion, I felt a new bowl drink creation was in order. This would be my first attempt at a bowl drink, which is very exciting. Since Rongo is the god of agriculture, I felt a strong fruit forward flavor was necessary, as well as a floral and fresh aroma. After three attempts I decided upon the recipe.3

Rongo
God of Agriculture
In Tropic Lands the Legends Tell
Astounding Pioneers Did Dwell
This Wise Fella Began All-Flight
For Rongo Flew the World’s First Kite!

This bowl is deviously deceptive – there are four ounces of 80-proof spirit within. To honor Rongo’s invention of the Kite, this Rongo Bowl will send you soaring!4
Rongo Bowl

Rongo Bowl
¾ oz orange blossom honey
¾ oz fresh lime juice
¾ oz fresh orange juice
¾ oz fresh white grapefruit juice
2 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
2 oz Dark Jamaican Rum (Coruba)
1 oz Demerara (Lemonhart 80)
1 oz Virgin Islands gold (Cruzan 2yr ‘dark’)
¼ oz orgeat
¼ oz passion fruit syrup
10 drops Herbsaint or other earthy absinthe (about 1/8th teaspoon)
3 dashes Fees Bros. old fashioned bitters

Heat honey to liquid and combine with all ingredients in mixing container. Fill Rongo bowl with crushed ice and pour into bowl. Stir with swizzle to cool and dilute. Garnish and serve.

Rongo Bowl Rongo Bowl Rongo Bowl Rongo Bowl

photo and photodesign credit: Heather ‘Tikimama’ Gregg

  1. Juan the “Barker Bird”, who was Jose’s cousin was originally outside, announcing the attraction. The crowds that would stand and watch him clogged the entry into Adventureland so he was removed []
  2. I feel these are now below what I wish to accomplish. Look soon for the plans, in-action shots, and creation stories for the new basement: “Colonel Tiki’s Cove” []
  3. Thanks to the help of Noel Henneman and the lovely Tikimama who were helpful in constructive criticism []
  4. Mary Poppins reference, “Let’s go Fly a Kite,” written by the Sherman Brothers who also wrote “The Tiki, Tiki, Tiki Room” as well as numerous other works of genius []

So that’s Bourbon Street

July 16th, 2008 by Colonel Tiki

After surviving the banality of the Denver airport and 1 lost garment bag1 we’ve arrived in New Orleans. At the airport we met up with Trader Tiki, Chuck and Wes, & Jeff Morganthaler who happened to arrive at the same time we did. We split a cab with Trader2.

I had a Vieux carré at the Carousel bar3 and met up with Rick, Jay, My compatriot in naming Craig (the Good Dr. Bamboo), Trader, Paul Clarke, Mr. Morganthaler, and Seamus. We headed off for a bit at Coop’s place. Perfect Choice, Paul. A belly full of fried seafood, gumbo and jambalaya made a good ballast.

We hit Arnaud’s French 75 Bar where we met with more who’s-who of the blog and non-blog cocktail scene. Matt came along presently and after a french 754, a cigar5, a Negroni6, and Gabriel‘s arrival7 we headed to a location not to be discussed.8 We bumped into Ed Hamilton on the way out which was lovely.

Going via Bourbon street to the non-disclosed location, I couldn’t help notice that the block that most smelled sewer-like happened to be the block with the live sex act clubs, Larry Flint’s Barely Legal, and other assorted gentleman’s clubs. It was such a mix of wonderful and horrible: Gaudy, tawdry neon are contrast against shuttered 300-year old windows. The moist heat of the evening was interrupted by cool breezes escaping from the open doorways of the aforementioned establishments. Garbage binge drinkers surrounded the group of cocktail snobs in the birthplace of the cocktail. It is beautiful and shocking and hideous and profane and I love every single damn thing about it.

We finished off the evening back at the Carousel bar. We closed it. Martin Cate dropped by and it was good to play catch-up with him.

Now for today’s fun. I’ve already missed the blog breakfast event (9:00am? Are you serious?). We’ll be toasting the Sazerac at 2pm. Join us, won’t you? I want to find a Rum Swizzle today.

P.S. Anyone have an SD card reader? Just realized this laptop9 is free of one. The USB cable is resting comfortably back on the table at home.

  1. it has since been found and delivered to the hotel []
  2. with a perfect crazy/nice/ranting cab driver to boot []
  3. tasty – but as it was my first, I have no comparison []
  4. good but not great []
  5. Montecristo No.3 []
  6. fair []
  7. with the lovely Joana []
  8. Thanks, Gabe – now we’ve lost the blackmail ability. First rule of Drink Club, man. []
  9. thanks, TriMet []

Tiki Kon VI Drink Menu

June 25th, 2008 by Colonel Tiki

This Saturday I am hosting Tiki Kon VI, a wild tour of two Portland Tiki bars and two Home Bars of Portland-area denizens.

At Thatch, I’ll be giving a short Tiki Mixology seminar and offering thirteen classic and new Tiki beverages on our menu. This is what is in store for our group of intrepid Tiki Adventurers:

Cobra’s Fang Mai Tai
Cuba Kula Miehana
Darker Magic Navy Grog
Fog Cutter Nui Nui
Happy Hoti Penang Afrididi #1
Jet Pilot QB Cooler
Lei Lani Volcano

The weather should be in the middle 90s and sunny. Our last stop will be a home bar with a pool. I think by that time, I will be just about ready to immediately jump in.

Flavor profiles: Falernum #4, phase II

April 16th, 2008 by Colonel Tiki

Finishing the Falernum

After more than three days of infusing the prior ingredients, it was time to strain, press, and complete Falernum #4.

Finishing the Falernum

Falernum #4 ingredients, cont.
3 cups simple syrup
1½ cups fresh lime juice

More »

Flavor profiles: Falernum #4, phase I

April 10th, 2008 by Colonel Tiki

It’s time again to make another batch of falernum. This makes my fourth batch to date. I am still tinkering with my own recipe, based upon the wonderful Paul Clarke.

At Tiki Central I run into those who seem to be afraid to experiment in creating their own concoctions of tinctures, liqueurs and juices. There’s no need to dread or disdain working in the kitchen. If you can make an omelet, you can make falernum. There is not a time commitment needed: I spent a scant 25 minutes from start to finish below, and I was taking pictures.

Falernum Mise en Place

Falernum #4
9 limes, zest from
¼ cup diced fresh ginger
45 cloves
2 cardamom pods
½ cup slivered almonds, dry-roasted
750ml Cruzan 120 Clipper Rum

A picture essay follows after the cut. I hope this inspires the previously kitchen-adverse to start tinkering.
More »

“Darker Magic” sketch in the works

March 28th, 2008 by Colonel Tiki

Here’s a sketch of something I’m working on – I’d love notes, opinions and ideas about it!

1 oz fresh lime juice
1 oz coffee syrup
1 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
2 oz Coruba
1 oz 5-star Rhum Barbancourt
dash Herbsaint

Shake with crushed ice and pour into small goblet or large snifter glass. Garnish with lime and pineapple wedge.

It’s dark and mysterious with a hint of bright flavors. That’s the flavor profile I was going for, at least. I am intrigued with how the pineapple’s flavor is modified in the Penang Afrididi (Sippin’ Safari): All the middle round flavours are enhanced. I wanted to meld that middle aspect of the pineapple with the coffee notes of the Mai-Kai’s Dark Magic. Give ‘er a go, see what you think!

Mixology Monday March 2008 — Limit One (per customer)

March 17th, 2008 by Colonel Tiki

Limit one Is it Monday again so soon? With the upheaval and changes going on with this Monkey’s household and work schedules, I just barely squeaked out an entry for this Month’s MxMo. My workstation may still be unconnected and in a box, but the Liquor has been unpacked. Priorities, people.

Kaiser Penguin hosts this month and the topic is fantastic: Limit one per customer. The theme implies a drink so full of booze it warrants the management to limit the purchase. There is another aspect, however. Making a strong drink is easy. Making a balanced and tasty strong drink is more difficult. However, creating a concoction so delicious as to drive a drinker to order successive rounds (and being denied on the face of the menu)? Pure genius.

And for this month’s genius, I turn again to Jeff ‘Beachbum’ Berry. I’m a lover of the short hoist: a 4oz or less cocktail to be taken as a pick-me-up or before-meal refresher or in-between-meal constitutional. I’ve long been in love with the Von Tiki, The bum’s own original creation at the end of the Grog Log. I also continually sub- and consciously refer to it as the “Baron von Tiki.” I’m sure it’s because of the German honey liqueur Bärenjäger1 . Austria helps out this aristocratic drink with Stroh 80, a 160-proof rum. This is widely used in Austrian and German baking. I like it daintily sipped with a Coke Chaser2. The Barbados rum is there because at the heart, this is a modified Daiquiri. Rum, Gum, and Lime strikes again.

I change the recipe a bit for my own taste: I triple the Stroh and add Fee Brothers Lemon Bitters to balance. I’ve tried replacing the Lime for lemon, but it ends up tasting more like a cough-drop. Lime is perfect for the base, with a lemon hint to match the honey.

With great respect to the Bum, I present:

(baron) Von Tiki – limit one per customer, please
(Baron) Von Tiki

1 oz Bärenjäger
½ oz Stroh 80 160-proof Austrian Rum
1 oz Barbados Rum (I use Cockspur)
¾ oz fresh lime juice
3 dashes Fee Brothers lemon bitters

Shake with crushed ice and strain into 4-oz cocktail glass.

  1. A linguistic aside: Bear comes from the Germanic Beor or Beorn. This translates to Bee-Wolf, a kenning that in Old English translates as Beowulf. The kenning here relates to the bear’s love of honey. He is a bee wolf. A lovely self referential name for a honey liquor: the Bee-Wolf-Hunter []
  2. Cane Sugar only, not High-Fructose Corn Syrup, please []