The first week of April was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I had the wonderful opportunity to go to Hawaii where I had an absolutely incredible time. It’s so beautiful, and the food there is just spectacular.
The Mai Tai is a cocktail often associated with Hawaii and the Polynesian lifestyle. Before my trip to Hawaii, I wasn’t entirely sure what a Mai Tai was, beyond that it was an alcoholic beverage. But by the time I returned home, it had become my bestie. It is definitely my new favorite cocktail.
Of course, it’s hard to come back from Hawaii and get back to life as usual. I missed having a Mai Tai so I thought why not make one myself?
The Mai Tai has a bit of a history that involves a feud between two bar owners in California back in the 1940s. It’s such a classic cocktail and so delicious, it’s easy to see why they’d fight over it. The name translates to “out of this world” and with one sip, I was convinced. You will be too!
When I made my Mai Tai though, I had to add my own flair. You know that’s how I roll. My changes included adding pineapple juice (that’s not in the original!) and I also made a slightly spiced simple syrup infused with cinnamon and nutmeg. I used coconut water instead of regular boring water to add a more tropical flavor and aroma. The results were delicious, taking me back to the breezy sandy shores of Hawaii…until I stepped outside my house into the frigid 40-degree weather. But back inside the warmth of my home, I could sip my Mai Tai and pretend I was still basking in the glory of one of the world’s most incredible vacation spots. Ahhhh! Make this now and transport yourself to Hawaii, mentally at least!
1⁄2 cup amber rum
1⁄2 cup light rum
1⁄4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1⁄2 cup fresh orange juice
2 cups pineapple juice
3 tablespoons Triple Sec
3 tablespoons pure almond extract
1 cup spiced simple syrup
1. Mix all of the ingredients in a pitcher and chill
2. Fill 6 glasses with ice.
3. Pour the Mai Tai into the glasses.
4. Garnish with a cherry and an orange slice, or a wedge of pineapple.
Spiced Simple Syrup
1/2 cup coconut water
1/2 cup sugar
1 whole nutmeg
1 cinnamon sticks
1. Bring sugar and coconut water to a boil.
2. Crack the nutmeg and it to the pot along with 1 cinnamon stick.