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April 6th, 2009

They turned me into a Zombie

Eastern Standard tiki party - Bob McCoy

It’s always interesting when you have evening plans to start drinking Zombies at 2:00 in the afternoon. Yes, Zombie Punch, resurrected from a 1934 recipe once thought to be as swept away by the sands of time as Donn Beach’s original Beachcomber bar in Hollywood, was the first drink served at the Taste of Tiki party at Eastern Standard on Saturday. This is a remarkably delicious and potent drink containing a full four ounces of rum, one ounce being 151 proof!

Eastern Standard tiki party - Cactus Flower

The other drinks on the menu were the exotic Cactus Flower, created by Brother Cleve for last year’s Tales of the Cocktail tiki block party, and another original, the Flying Dutchman, created by Eastern Standard bartender and tiki enthusiast Bob McCoy. (Oh, and let’s not forget about the welcome tipple, Trader Vic’s punch.) Cleve and McCoy took turns speaking to the 50+ guests about the origins of the tiki phenomenon, and the cocktails, music and sometimes fabulous but often kitschy restaurants that were part of it.

Eastern Standard tiki party - Cleve & Jackson

Luckily, there were egg rolls, coconut fried shrimp, roast pig and beignets to soak up some of that hooch. Many thanks to McCoy, Jackson Cannon, Molly Hopper and the rest of the Eastern Standard staff for putting together a terrific party. Thanks also to Mike Sullivan (aka Bargoyle) of the New England chapter of the Fraternal Order of the Moai for co-promoting this shindig with drinkboston. (Check out this group’s plans for a weekend-long tiki bash in Lake George, NY.) And a special thanks to Lorna Wilkerson, a Boston cocktail enthusiast who thought up the whole idea of having a tiki party at Eastern Standard in the first place.

Eastern Standard tiki party - pig roaster

The Zombie Punch (1934)
By Donn Beach

1 ½ oz. Appleton Estate V/X Rum
1 ½ oz. Bacardi Gold Rum
1 oz. 151 Lemon Heart Demerara Rum
¾ oz. lime juice
½ oz. Donn’s Mix (2 parts grapefruit juice to 1 part cinnamon syrup)
½ oz. falernum
1 bar spoon grenadine
6 drops Pernod
Dash Angostura bitters

Build in a mixing glass and dry shake. Pour in a chimney (tall) glass filled with crushed ice and stir. Add more crushed ice to fill and garnish with a mint sprig.

The Cactus Flower
By Brother Cleve

1 ½ oz. Cruzan Single Barrel Estate Rum
1 oz. Cruzan Estate Light Rum
¼ oz. Cruzan Estate Blackstrap Rum
½ oz. Bols Orange Curacao
1 oz. prickly pear puree
1 oz. orange juice
1 oz. pineapple juice
¾ oz. lime juice
½ oz. simple syrup
2 dashes Angostura bitters
1 oz. club soda

Build in a mixing glass and dry shake. Pour into a double old fashioned glass filled with crushed ice, add club soda, and stir. Garnish with an orange slice.

The Flying Dutchman
By Bob McCoy

1 oz. citrus- and spice-infused Batavia Arrack*
¾ oz. St. Elizabeth’s Allspice Dram
¾ oz. crème de cacao
½ oz. pineapple juice
Dash Elemakule Tiki Bitters

Build in a mixing glass, add ice, and shake. Strain into a chilled lowball glass, no garnish. *For the infusion: Combine the peels of 20 lemons and 5 oranges with 1 1/2 liters of Batavia Arrack in a glass jar. Toast 20 cloves, 10 green peppercorns, and 5 cardamom pods over medium/high heat, tossing frequently until the aromas are released. Add to the jar, cover, and infuse for 14-19 days.

Eastern Standard tiki party - me and Bargoyle

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Posted in Cocktails, Events, Rum | 12 Comments »

April 3rd, 2009

Get your tiki on!

Eastern Standard Tiki PartyUPDATE: Sorry, imbibers. I did not realize how close this event was to selling out when I wrote this reminder post about the tiki party at Eastern Standard. For anyone still interested in attending, there is a waiting list. Click on the link below for contact info.

Still making weekend plans? In case you hadn’t heard already, drinkboston is co-hosting a tiki party at Eastern Standard tomorrow starting at 2:00 p.m. What could be better than escaping a cold, grey New England afternoon to mingle in a roomful of people wearing tropical garb, listening to Martin Denny, drinking luscious rum drinks and eating roast pig and other tasty Polynesian fare? Not only that, you’ll learn about the curious, kitschy history of Polynesia in the U.S. and Boston from Brother Cleve, professor of cocktail/bar culture, DJ, musician and all-around Boston legend. All this for $50, tax and tip included. See you there!

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Posted in Cocktails, Events, Rum | 2 Comments »

March 23rd, 2009

Event – urban luau at Eastern Standard

Eastern Standard Tiki PartyDust off your lei, your hula skirt and your Don Ho loafers and join drinkboston and the Fraternal Order of Moai for a tiki party-urban luau at Eastern Standard Kitchen & Drinks on Saturday, April 4 starting at 2:00 p.m.

A roasted pig will be the centerpiece of a three-course luncheon of traditional Polynesian-American fare in the great Donn Beach/Trader Vic tradition. Three freshly squeezed, rum-soaked tiki cocktails accompany the food: a recent creation by Brother Cleve, who will program the exotica music soundtrack for the day and also give a keynote presentation on the history of Polynesia in both the U.S. and Boston; another tiki original by the Eastern Standard bar staff; and a classic recipe from tiki’s early era in the 1930s and ’40s.

Cleve points out that Eastern Standard is “within staggering distance of Boston’s original 1940s Polynesian Village, later the Aku Aku — a favorite haunt of the early punk rock crowd in the ’70s due to its proximity to the Rat. The goldfish-bowl bar railing full of dead goldfish helped create the proper vibe. And people wonder why these places died out!”

All the eats, drinks, education and entertainment are included in a ticket price of $50 per person. Tix can be purchased over the phone (617-532-9100), via email (mhopper at easternstandardboston dot com) or by stopping into Eastern Standard anytime between now and April 4. Hope to see you there!

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Posted in Cocktails, Events, Rum | 3 Comments »

March 7th, 2009

Save the date for tiki mania

South Seas menu, 1969Save this date: Saturday, April 4. Drinkboston will co-host a tiki party at Eastern Standard beginning at 2:00 p.m. There’ll be exotica and “tiki noir” spun by Brother Cleve, tiki education and artifacts by co-hosts the Fraternal Order of the Moai, and, of course, deliciously potent tiki cocktails by the bar staff at Eastern Standard.

Now, for those who think “syrupy umbrella drinks made with powdered mixes” when they think “tiki drink,” I got news for you: this event will feature Real Tiki Drinks — the kind made with fresh-squeezed juices, traditional liqueurs, and layers of aged rum. When you try a couple, you’ll understand … and you’ll turn into one of those people who run around Boston looking for all manner of hard-to-find rums.

Stay tuned for details and ticket info.

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Posted in Cocktails, Events, Rum | 9 Comments »

January 29th, 2009

Milk punch

Ben Franklin’s milk punch recipeIt’s one of the oddest drinks I’ve ever tasted. And I mean that in a good way. I first had milk punch (not to be confused with the simpler concoction of brandy, rum or bourbon, sugar, whole milk and nutmeg served over crushed ice) at a Stir class last winter. It was sweet, velvety, rich … and confusing. That’s because, though it’s made with milk, it’s somewhere between translucent and transparent. In other words, not at all “milky.” Leave it to the bartenders at Drink to reintroduce this punch, which takes two days to make, to the modern imbiber. I write a short introduction to one of their recipes, Rum-Hibiscus Milk Punch, in today’s online Globe.

There are many variations on the basic milk punch recipe. The drinkboston punch party at Eastern Standard in June featured Milk Punch No. 1 from the Savoy Cocktail Book. Aphra Behn, a 17th-century English dramatist and novelist and allegedly the first woman to make a living as a writer, is credited with inventing milk punch, or at least having the first widely publicized recipe for it. Whatever its origins, it became well known enough during the 18th century for Benjamin Franklin to share a recipe for milk punch with James Bowdoin during his 1763 stay in Boston.

Franklin’s Milk Punch recipe shares characteristics of two types of beverages — possets and syllabubs,” according to the Massachusetts Historical Society.

Wow. I am so looking forward to walking into a Boston bar and ordering possets and syllabubs.

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Posted in Brandy, Cocktails, Punch, Rum, drinkboston in the news | 9 Comments »

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