The King is dead. Long live the King!

Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge

The spirit of Elvis was certainly alive last Friday at Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge, where a crowd gathered to celebrate what would have been the King’s 75th birthday.  Blue Hawaii and Viva Las Vegas were playing on separate screens, peanut butter & banana sandwiches were the featured snack, and Elvis-themed cocktails were flowing.  Six members of The Antifogmatic League turned out to pay tribute to the King and toast him in grand style…repeatedly.  It was only fitting to start off the evening with one of the six featured Elvis cocktails, so we ordered a round of Blue Hawaiians.  FI’s version of the Blue Hawaiian was creamy and sweet with plenty of coconut and rum.

Blue Hawaiians for the King's 75th

Our intrepid members then sampled a cocktail as showy as the King himself, the Burning Love: a flaming drink made with two kinds of rum, lime, and homemade pomegranate grenadine.  Our fearless explorers then branched out on different paths, some continuing on the Elvis trail, while others sampled libations from FI’s extensive list of Tiki drinks.

Burning Love x 3

Other Elvis cocktails sampled included the “King Creole” which was really a Sazerac.  A rare misstep of the evening, The King Creole suffered from a heavy hand with the absinthe and we politely discussed our expectations for a Sazerac with our bartender, Paddy.  Paddy, I must say, was a perfect gentleman, and a wicked good bartender, and he took the drink back and delivered another that was spot-on.  Another AL member tried the “Girl Happy” which was Forbidden Island’s version of La Floridita Daiquiri.  Petite, but delicious, the Girl Happy was a classic combination of fresh lime juice, rum, and Maraschino Liqueur.  The Burning Love proved to be more than a flash in the pan, and Paddy was more pyromaniac than bartender at points in the evening as he lit fire after fire for the throng.

Paddy, our pyromaniac bartender

Drinks sampled from FI’s extensive menu included The Monkey Pod, an original cocktail featuring rum, lime, coconut and tamarind served with a sprig of fresh mint. Virgin Painkillers were the drink of choice for our AL member with the bun in the oven, and somehow that seemed so àpropos.  The Nui Nui didn’t disappoint either with its kickass combo of allspice, cinnamon, rum, and citrus.  Hail to Don the Beachcomber! (The creator of this drink, one of my favorites.)

Virgin Painkiller, Burning Love, Monkeypod

Nui Nui

Towards the witching hour, our stalwart AL members carried on, venturing off the beaten menu paths.  Dr. John sipped Appleton Estate Extra 12 Year Old rum, while your fearless leader tried the same on the rocks with falernum (kind of a Corn n’ Biodiesel, instead of a Corn n’ Oil).  Our ever accommodating bartender, Paddy, even whipped up an old-skool Aviation complete with a dash of Crème de Violette for one of our members, who was celebrating his last day at one job, before moving on to the next.

Aviation with Tiki-style garnish

A little after midnight, our crew decided to head for our respective little grass shacks. As we started to leave, a new wave of patrons started to trickle in. Will the Thrill grilled them as he had everyone who ventured in during the evening, “Are you over 21, and do you know who Elvis Presley is?”

“Yes, and of course we know who Elvis Preston is!” they replied indignantly. We took that as our cue to leave. I think Elvis would’ve headed for Graceland too.

Published in: on January 18, 2010 at 11:23 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Puppies, Kitties, and Cocktails, Oh My!

Flickr: Bogdan Suditu

Do you like animals?  Do you like a well-crafted cocktail?  Of course you do!  Then head on over to Heaven’s Dog this Tuesday to support the San Francisco SPCA. From the Heaven’s Dog website:

On Tuesday, January 19th from 6pm – 8pm, Heaven’s Dog and the Soma Grand are inviting neighbors, pet owners and pet lovers from around the city to raise their glasses high in order to create awareness for the plight of animals in need of care and homes in San Francisco.  In addition, Heaven’s Dog is donating 50% of all beverage sales during that time period to the San Francisco SPCA.

WHERE: Heaven’s Dog Restaurant at Soma Grand: 1148 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA

Published in: on January 14, 2010 at 10:05 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Rhum Agricole Punch

Rhum Agricole Punch

Back in the summer (ah, summer…where did you go?), I had a long lunch with a friend at Heaven’s Dog.  It was my first time there and I had picked our luncheon spot specifically because of the great things I had heard about their cocktails.  What did we eat?  I don’t recall, except that there was pork belly involved.  But the cocktails? Yes, things of beauty.  After the food was consumed, we moved to the beautiful cypress wood bar and sampled a couple more of their wonderful drinks. At one point I ordered something on their menu called “Freedom from Choice”.  Basically, you tell the bartender if you want a citrus-driven or spirituous cocktail and give him an idea of what liquor you might like.  I said, “Citrus and rum.”  What I got was a Rhum Agricole Punch.  I loved it, and was told that it was on the menu at The Slanted Door (the two places are owned by Charles Phan).  I asked what was in it and was graciously given the ingredients.  It wasn’t until recently that I had the proper rum to make it with.  I decided to mix one up and see if it was as good as I remembered.  When I looked at the note in my trusty iPhone I realized that I had gotten the ingredients, but not the proportions.  I tried to recreate it as well as I could, and I was very happy with the results.  I hope you will be too. It’s one worth trying…

Heaven’s Dog Rhum Agricole Punch

Shake first 5 ingredients with ice and strain into a glass over crushed ice.  Grate nutmeg over the drink and serve.  Note: The proportions are my own, but the ingredients were given to me by the bartender. It tasted like I remembered, so I think it’s pretty close.

Rhum Agricole Punch @ Heaven's Dog (on left)

Published in: on January 12, 2010 at 11:00 pm  Comments (6)  
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