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Well, I'm back from my cruise with a suitcase of liquor and an odd craving for frozen drinks. WOOHOO!!!
On the ship they used a machine called Island Oasis. I have priced them on ebay and they seem to average around $900. Seems a bit steep for my tiki bar buget. Does anyone have a good suggestion on the best way to make frozen drink concoctions? The oasis machine was great in that you just loaded ice in the top and it measured, shaved and mixed all in one machine. Very cool.
Well, I am usually not in the game anymore for pointing out Tiki incorrectness, but, for the benefit of all who seek the true Tiki...one more time:
Not to put a damper on your enthusiasm, but FROZEN drinks a generally not "Tiki Drinks" (again, a word that to me signals Tiki miss-information as examplified by the spring break cocktail guide of the same name).
Frozen drinks, as yummy as they can be, are for the Jimmy Buffet generic tropical set (here we go again, ha ha).
Forget the Island Oasis machine unless you are going to be entertaining 50 people frequently.
Rather, get yourself a VitaMix and preferably one of the old stainless steel versions.
My cousin brought one to the Lagoon Lounge (my personal hideaway) the other night and he'll never get it back.
It will do the job you're looking to do, I assure you.
Plus we were so excited we invented our own concoction "The Banana Rum Split."
I'll post that eventually when there are a few more originals to add.
Regarding the "frozen" issue - certainly the finely ground ice that comes from an Island Oasis machine wouldn't be True Tiki by any stretch, but freezing by swizzle stick and shaved ice was lauded by Trader Vic often.
I had a Queens Park Swizzle in Emeryville about 2 years ago that was very close in consistency to a frozen drink.
And then I fell down.
Thanks Pablus for the info on the VitaMix. I'll keep an eye out for one. Sounds like that would work great for me.
After reading so many past posts I'm aware that the frozen drinks aren't "true" tiki, but the mother-in-law and the neices and nephews would much prefer a fruity frozen drink over a MaiTai. Since I do entertain a good bit I try and keep everyone happy.
Trust me, if I had to listen to one more Jimmy Buffet song while on the cruise, I was gonna jump ship.
IMHO there are exceptions to the Frozen drink rule. The Lilo served a great blended drink that tasted like bananas and was for-sure Tiki -- everyone loved that drink. Does anyone remember it's name?
Well, if frozen drinks are a must-have at your lounge, I suggest purchasing a book entitled "Hawai'i tropical rum drinks & cuisine."
Although it doesn't really TELL you to blend a frozen drink, it has a lot of Beachcomber originals with photos that look suspiciously like they've been passed through the blade.
And boy are they good.
...hey, wait a second.
Now I'm guessing any one of you guys and gals could drink me under the table, or beat me in a libation-making contest. I'm a hobbyist at best. But when Sven and the rest of you introduced me to the wide world of Tiki, I went out and stocked up on a few essentials, just so that I could be drinking the right drinks as I read Kon-Tiki by the pool. To me, a machine would never be any fun. I like to pretend I'm back in the 50's at my little bar, so I'm grinding ice with a manual grinder, using a martini shaker to make things nice and cold, growing my own mint, and when I do need to blend, just using a small blender big enough for a couple of drinks. I'm no purist... I don't know what drinks came in what order. I'm just trying to learn to enjoy rum in it's many forms to truly appreciate what Martin Denny sounds like with a nice, warm, buzzy head. I say keep it simple. Make em by hand as much as you can, one drink at a time. Invent a drink or two. Squeeze a lime by hand. Light something on fire. You'll enjoy it more, and your friends will enjoy the show... even if the drinks don't always come out the best. The rum will be good, no matter what you do to it. :)
littlegiles wrote: "After reading so many posts I'm aware that frozen drinks aren't 'true' tiki but...Since I do entertain a good bit I try and keep everyone happy."
That's what's most important. If you read beyond the recipes in Trader Vic's books you'll see that he preached a similar message (and he gave a helluva an altar call). When visiting Castaway Cove (the gigantic home Tiki bar of Centralite TikiMaxton) I noticed that Maxton served Vic's recipe Mai Tais for those in the know and the more common orange Mai Tai for his guests who'd only had that version and weren't interested in being educated while having a good time. (Calling the orange drink a Mai Tai "version" is a stretch as just about everyone here agrees it's an abomination in the eyes of Tiki.)
You can get a perfect frizzed drink from a good belender. Buy a blender, try it, if it doesn't work take it back and try another. Check out used restaurant equipment places for high powered professional models which should run a lot less than that Island machine and can turn a whole roast chicken into soup in less than a minute...Great for those late night soup cravings.
From personal experiance, the KitchenAid Ice blender is pretty good for Frozen type drinks.
Now I sound like a sales Rep...
Exactly. Yet again, I realize this is a generalization, but the true Polynesian mixologist does not use a blender, which works from the bottom, but a TOP MIXER, preferrably a Hamilton Beach. The generational gap between BLENDED and MIXED is akin to the gap between the Mai Tai and the Margharita.
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