Mai Tai: The Cocktail Vacations are Made Of Tiki huts and Polynesian dreams…that’s what a relaxing vacation should look like. Nothing ma...
Mai Tai: The Cocktail Vacations are Made Of
Tiki huts and Polynesian dreams…that’s what a relaxing vacation should look like. Nothing makes one more complete than to have a Mai Tai in hand while luxuriating on powdery sands with the waves crashes onto the shore somewhere in the distance. But even if you’re miles inland, a Mai Tai can completely change your mood for the better, instantly bringing you from work drone to vacation-ready.
This fruity and sweet concoction is just what you need when you want to unwind. While being irresistibly tasty, this Polynesian punch of sorts packs quite the punch, delivering a deliriously fun buzz in its wake. The potent Mai Tai as we know it was invented in 1944 in Southern California by a man named Victor J. Bergeron, owner of the restaurant Trader Vic’s. But his fierce rival, a man known as Don the Beachcomber, was forever up in arms about this as he claimed to be the original Mai Tai creator, stating he’d come up with it in 1933. Don the Beachcomber’s drink was completely different though and Bergeron is still revered as the original mastermind behind this cocktail.
According to cocktail legend (or should it be “cock-tale” legend?), Bergeron whipped up this luscious libation for friends that were visiting from Tahiti. The story goes that one of these friends shouted out, “Maita ‘i roa ae!” The translation of this statement abounds to “out of this world.” With “Mai Tai” being much easier to pronounce than the Tahitian version, that’s how it got its name.
You don’t need to be on the beach to order a Mai Tai, though it would surely help. Most establishments can make one for you, though depending on their cocktail prowess, it may or may not be a reflection of the original. In fact, most that you’ll order will indeed taste wonderful but will be full of pineapple juice and orange juice. The original only contained fresh-squeezed lime juice. There were never any of those cute drink umbrellas in it either, but we rather like that addition to it (or any cocktail really…they’re just fun!).
The original recipe Bergeron used at Trader Vic’s back in 1944 involves 2 ounces of 17-year aged J. Wrap & Nephew Rum, fresh-squeezed juice of one lime, 1/2 ounce of Hollan DeKuyper Orange Curaçao, 1/4 ounce Trader Vic’s Rock Candy Syrup, and 1/2 ounce French Garier Orgeat Syrup. You’re to shake it vigorously and serve it over shaved ice with a mint sprig garnish.
You can head to your favorite spirit shop to track down the ingredients, though heading to your favorite watering hole might be a faster way to that mental Mai Tai vacation you were hoping to take. Just don’t expect it to be like the original and you’ll still find bliss at the bottom of your glass.