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Now that we are in the midst of summer, we need a truly summertime drink, and no drink celebrates the season like ones that come with an umbrella. We are mixing up something tiki-inspired based off the classic cocktail, the Jungle Bird. We updated the cocktail with the award-winning Bartlett Rusticator Rum and made the drink a little less calorie-heavy. Not that we care about bikini bodies or whatever, but less sugar is probably a good thing in the long run.

I went to the experts again, can you blame me? Trevin Hutchins, bartender-extraordinaire at Rhum Food & Grog in Portland let me drop in and create a balanced, modern tiki cocktail. We started with choosing a vessel. (Hutchins informed me that he “always chooses the glassware first.”) I chose a skull, because obviously.

The classic cocktail calls for Campari, which I don’t like, so we replaced it with the less-bitter Aperol. In place of the sweet black strap rum, we tried the Rusticator, and made up for sweetness with the pineapple shrub from Owl & Whale. We also added some Crude Tiki Two-Two pineapple and vanilla bitters. Hutchins topped off the cocktail with a splash of soda and a festive pineapple and cherry garnish, stuck through with the umbrella. Perfect.

THE RECIPE

1 ounce Owl & Whale Pineapple Rosemary Shrub
1 1/2 ounces Aperol
1 1/2 ounces Bartlett Rusticator Rum
4 drops of Crude Tiki Two-Two pineapple and vanilla bitters
Splash of soda

Pour all the ingredients into a shaker with ice, shake and strain into a tall ice-filled glass. Top off with a splash of soda and garnish.

Jessie Lacey lives in Portland.  She spends whatever free time she has making dresses, cocktails, art and trouble.

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