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Scott S

Mai Tai Recipes

411 posts in this topic

Because my on hand ingredients are somewhat limited these days I tried something a little different:

1 oz Appleton 12
1 oz W&N overproof

3/4 oz Grand Marnier
1 oz lime juice

1/4 oz orgeat

Because the last of the mint wasn't very pretty I included it in the shaker rather than as a garnish. Strained over crushed ice. Garnished with spent half lime as usual. This works. Very nice actually, if only a tad too sweet. Perhaps just right, I can't decide...maybe if I made another.

The proportions are closest to those of Wayne Curtis.

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Tristan Stephenson is speccing his Mai Tai with Meyers's and Trois Rivieres in his book.

Great minds.

I just started reading The Curious Bartender. At first blush it looks fascinating! I may even put volume 5 of Modernist Cuisine aside for the night. Last fall I requested our library purchase a copy of Stephenson's book, and it seems we bought at least a couple copies.

But to stay on topic, after a blustery frigid day, a long, cold night at work with broken heat, and more snow starting about midnight, what better beverage than a mai tai? I was not feeling too particular about proportions. My half lime was generous. So here is what I ended up with:

1 1/2 oz Appleton 12

1/2 oz Pusser's (which sadly killed the bottle)

1 1/4 oz Wray & Nephew (inadvertent generous pour)

3/4 oz Grand Marnier

1 1/4 oz lime juice

1/2 oz orgeat

Usual garnish with crushed ice, spent half lime, and mint. Nicely balanced and not too sweet. Indeed I like this about as well as any mai tai version I have tried.

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The market here continues to be afflicted with Paul Bunyan sized limes. Needless to say this affects my mixology as I continue my investigations of the Migh Ty.

Since I just stocked up today on Pusser's, tonight's recipe is:

2 oz Pusser's

1 1/4 oz Wray & Nephew (still can't get the pour quite right)
1 oz Grand Marnier
1 1/2 - 1 3/4 oz lime juice (juice of half a lime)

3/4 oz Small Hand orgeat

Crushed ice, spent half lime (wedged with difficulty in the glass), fresh mint. Just for fun a float or three of W&N. A little sweeter than night before last but still a very nicely balanced drink. I am so pleased. I might add that it is pretty too. If only I had a bamboo straw!


Edited by JoNorvelleWalker (log)

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I came here to post about a particularly fortuitous elixir that I'm enjoying at the moment, but I see it is almost identical to the recipe in the post above. Probably slightly better though:

2 oz Pusser's

1 oz Wray & Nephew
3/4 oz Grand Marnier
1 1/4 oz lime juice

1/2 oz orgeat

Very lovely and well balanced. Crushed ice, spent half lime, prettiest fresh mint in a while. I used to think mint was nothing more than pretentious. Now I can get off burying my nose in a fresh bunch. Little wonder Pavlov got the Nobel Prize.

For future research I am looking for another mai tai rum. My local store has two that seem interesting: a Brugal anejo that wikipedia lists as "mid-tier" and a bottle of Gosling's Old Rum that is quite dear indeed. Has anyone tried either? The 15 year old Pusser's also sounds interesting but my store does not stock it.

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Gosling's old is way too expensive for use in a cocktail (though that was the original point of the Mai Tai). I'd pass on the Brugal. Not bad, but not special.


Edited by Hassouni (log)

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I'm sipping the Gosling's at the moment. (Not, however, in a mai tai -- though you know that's probably sure to come.) The proprieter offered me a deal, said it had been on the shelf forever. Not much of a deal because I probably would have tried it at full price. Anyhow very nice stuff, but at 80 proof it tastes awfully thin next to W&N.

Any idea how old the Gosling's really is? There is no age statement. And their website didn't help much.

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I'm trying to decide whether I prefer Cointreau or Grand Marnier in a mai tai. I took my outstanding recipe from the other night and substituted Cointreau for the Grand Marnier:

2 oz Pusser's

1 oz Wray & Nephew
3/4 oz Cointreau
1 1/4 oz lime juice

1/2 oz orgeat

I found this version too sweet and too bitter. Too orange-bitter that is. Still good, but I am aiming at perfection. So for this particular mai tai formulation, Grand Marnier works better than Cointreau. I'd have to reduce the Cointreau at the very least, but better I think just to use Grand Marnier.

Any suggestions for the best rum(s) to pair with Gosling's Old? Or should I just try it straight? I'm thinking to pair it with my next bottle of Appleton 12, which should be waiting for me at the store. And maybe W&N. I do like W&N.

Edit: just for fun I shook up and added additional W&N, Pusser's, Grand Marnier, and orgeat. Not sure I made it better, but I made it more. Could use some extra lime, but I'll suffer and make do.

Edit 2: I lied. I may not sleep, but at least I won't have nightmares of scurvy. This is actually pretty good but I don't think I could reproduce it.


Edited by JoNorvelleWalker (log)

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OK, I've tried the Gosling's Old in a mai tai:

1 1/2 oz Pusser's

1 oz Wray & Nephew

1/2 oz Gosling's Old
3/4 oz Grand Marnier
1 1/2 oz lime juice

1/2 oz orgeat

Usual garnish. I still have very nice mint. I can't say this is markedly different from my other sucessful experiments. Perhaps if I use more of the Gosling's Old. Maybe a little less lime next time.

I am surprised how much better Grand Marnier works in these proportions compared with Cointeau.

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made mine tonight with

1oz Wray and Nephew

1oz Smith and Cross

1/2oz luxardo tri plum (triple sec)

1/2oz homemade orgeat

1/2 juicy meyer lemon

Shook over ice and served

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PV - I'm sorry to hear of your loss. Those are some fine looking cocktails.


Kindred Cocktails | Craft + Collect + Concoct + Categorize + Community

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Thank you both. My grandma was ready to go at this point.

We used Appleton V/X and St Aubin agricole.


Edited by Plantes Vertes (log)

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When I go I could do worse than have my granddaughters morn me with a mai tai. Though at the moment I must say it is more my grandson who is into alcohol. Not that my granddaughters don't appreciate it.

I too am sorry for your loss. Please share which version of Don's recipe.

For me tonight it is a variation on Vic's theme:

1 oz Pusser's

1 oz Wray & Nephew

1 oz Gosling's Old
3/4 oz Grand Marnier
1 1/2 - 1 3/4 oz lime juice (juice of a lime)

1/2 oz orgeat

Very nice, again. At first sip I thought it might be a tad too sweet, but I think it is just the molassicity of the Gosling's Old. Also, this time I used 1/2 cubes rather than crushed ice. And sadly no mint at the moment.

I could keep drinking this forever.

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Gosling's old is way too expensive for use in a cocktail (though that was the original point of the Mai Tai). I'd pass on the Brugal. Not bad, but not special.

 

Tonight I finally brought home the Brugal, more intended for a zombie than a mai tai.  However after extensive pre-zombie testing, I find I really like it.  Brugal may find a home in my mai tai as well.

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Yeah, I mean the Brugal is perfectly pleasant, just remember that it's a lighter hispanic style, and may not cut through everything else going on in a Tiki drink - it would work well in recipes calling for Cuban rum though - several of the Don and Vic recipes call for Cuban or PR rum as one component, backed up with something more hearty.

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Tonight I had actually been planning to assay a Jet Pilot for the first time.  However today I took delivery of a new, more capacious mai tai vessel.  I am pleased to report it is quite satisfactory for the intended purpose and of course I had to make a mai tai.  The fact that I am dead tired, it is almost 1:00 am, and my eyes glazed over looking at the Jet Pilot ingredients had little to do with the decision.

 

This mai tai, I believe, is a bit different than anything I've done before:

 

1 oz Pusser's

1 oz Wray & Nephew

1 oz Smith & Cross
1/2 oz Cointreau
1 oz fresh lime juice (juice of half an hideously expensive lime)

1/2 oz orgeat

 

 

Garnished with spent half lime and lovely bush of mint.  Beautiful presentation.  Perfect balance.  Very satisfying and worth repeating.

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I set out to recreate my delightful mai tai from last night.  Unfortunately after a Jet Pilot I forgot what I was measuring and doled out 3/4 oz Cointreau rather than 1/2.  Not terrible, did not pour it down the drain.  Cointreau stands out a bit too much however.  Not optimum.

 

How do other mai tai makers handle this problem if they've enjoyed some other beverage first?  One thing that helps for me is if I uncork everything before I assemble then recork as the ingredient is used.  Still have the small problem of measuring correctly though.

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I don't free pour either.  (Usually.)  I carefully measure.  But sometimes I forget what i am measuring.

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Written recipe, assembled into an apothecary's measure or similarly graduated beaker. That way if I forget where I am then I can tell by reading the volume in the beaker and adding up the ingredient volumes down the list until I get to the matching point.

 

Which said, forgetting where I am while assembling a MaiTai may be a clue that I should not be having another MaiTai right now.... :)

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I'd be looking to see if my "check liver light" was on! I can say that as I sip on an Obituary.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

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I'd be looking to see if my "check liver light" was on! I can say that as I sip on an Obituary.

 

I've learned your secret:  a drink with only three ingredients to measure!

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I set out to recreate my delightful mai tai from last night.  Unfortunately after a Jet Pilot I forgot what I was measuring and doled out 3/4 oz Cointreau rather than 1/2.  Not terrible, did not pour it down the drain.  Cointreau stands out a bit too much however.  Not optimum.

 

How do other mai tai makers handle this problem if they've enjoyed some other beverage first?  One thing that helps for me is if I uncork everything before I assemble then recork as the ingredient is used.  Still have the small problem of measuring correctly though.

 

If you recognize what you have done in time then you can always scale up the other ingredients to match the error. Drink is better and you have more of it.

 

That is what I would call a win, win!!!


If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. ~Mark Twain

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