Archive for the 'Booze' Category Page 2 of 4

Today’s mermaid


Marina in her element.

Today’s mermaid


The inviting Marina, and a bottle of Appleton Estate, great combo!

Hell of a holiday

We’re meeting Santa tonight! 

Swim-up Bar


Get hosed and never leave the water.  ¡Dos margaritas con Hornitos, por favor!

 23.647492°N, 109.682609°W

Kill-Devil Wall of Fame



So here we are, Kālai Waʻa and Pele Nani (the Hawai’ian names we use on Tiki Central) up on the Kill-Devil Club Wall of Fame at Forbidden Island, surrounded as you can see by our old friends Goslings Old, Mount Gay, English Harbor 5, and the Pyrat family.   Peggy and I had a fun time there last night (it was Flight Lounge Thursday), and had a nice chat with PETERSON, our Kill-Devil neighbor to the immediate left.   We are very happy with how it turned out.

Kill-Devil Club Completed



Last night was a momentous occasion for Peggy and me.  We finally finished all 97 rums and joined the “ranks of the immortals” in Forbidden Island’s Kill-Devil Club.  I’ve written of  our quest previously (here, here, here), which began on March 22 and ended November 2, a duration of 225 days, with an average of nearly exactly 3 drinks per week.  Owner Martin Cate made a very nice speech of congratulation, and presented us each with bottles of our favorite rums, Ron Zacapa 23 for Peggy and Santa Teresa 1796 for me.  We are the first to make it into the club as a couple, and will see our names enshrined together in a double-wide plaque behind the bar.  Pics when it happens.

 EDIT 14 Nov 08:  It happend, see post here.

KELT Ocean Matured Cognac


… This is not enough. We seek perfection. In the 18th century, all spirits were shipped in oak barrels. It was found that the spirits developed in an astonishing way during the long sea voyages from Europe to the new world. At that time, the effects of a sea voyage on spirits were barely known. Now, some 200 years later, we know much more about the technical and chemical aspects of the aging process and the phenomenal results which flow from the sea having the chance to work its magic on the spirits.

We now know more, but not all. So, we return to the 18th century to give the final touch of maturation to our spirits. We send them, in oak barrels, once around the world on a three month sea voyage – the Tour du Monde OCEAN MATURATION.

During kelt’s tour du monde OCEAN MATURATION the spirits move constantly with the rolling of the ship. Every molecule of the liquid is in contact with the oak wood repeatedly each day. There are huge variations in temperature, and often extreme heat. The high temperatures persuade the wood to impart the finest of its lignin into the spirits. The constant changes in temperature and air pressure also enable the wood to expand and contract, thereby varying the oxygenation of the spirits. The evaporation increases considerably as does the quality. The »edges« are rounded off and the spirit becomes much more mellow and subtle. This is reflected in both the nose and the taste. Due to the constant movement, temperature and air-pressure variations the molecular structure is rearranged, marrying the blend in a formidable way.

The spirits, already amongst the oldest and finest even before the Tour du Monde, appear to have aged by years or even a decade during their sea voyage around the world. After the OCEAN MATURATION (Tour du Monde) our cognacs return to France for a period of rest in stone chais before they are bottled.

Sounds awesome.  They do a line of cognacs (VSOP, XO, Petra), an Armagnac, and a custom blended Scotch.  Get it on your xmas list now!

A little light at the end of the tunnel


Way back in the beginning of the year, I wrote about Forbidden Island’s (the best tiki bar in the Bay Area) Kill-Devil Club, where one can earn fame and permanent liver damage by drinking one’s way through a list of 97 rums, some sublime, some really good, some not so good, and some down right horrible.  Well Peggy and I started on this spiritual journey in late march, and now we have but 24 to go!  We think we can finish and earn our names on the wall by the end of the year.  We asked Martin, the owner, that we have both our names on the same double-wide plaque “with a little heart in the middle” since we have done it as a couple, and are the first to do so.  We’ll see if he can honor that request.  Meanwhile, I am sure you are dying to follow our progress, so I have added a countdown meter at the top of the right sidebar of the blog. 

Friday  I also had a nice surprise at FI in meeting Dominic, author of the Life on the Alameda Estuary blog.  Dominic is also a Kill-Devil devotee, having started last month.  He and his sailing buddy Steve were there to pre-lubricate in preparation for racing their 5.5 meter boat on Saturday.   Hope they did well! 

Boat upgrade idea – Super SideBar


I’ve recently been looking at lot at upgrades for Temerity to get ready for the 2009 season and beyond to Pac Cup 2010.  This one seems indispensible!

The Super SideBar® is an innovative beverage dispensing system that allows you to dispense five of your favorite liquors/beverages without handling a bottle.

The compact system automatically transports beverages from their original containers to your glass! Supply bottles can be stored as much as ten feet away, typically under counter tops or in a secure location. The system is fully programmable for automatic measuring of drinks just the way you like them.

SideBar operates on either 110 volt AC or 12 volt DC, making it ideal for use in your home, boat, outdoor kitchen, BBQ Island, recreational vehicle, limo, charter bus/motor coach, or aircraft (FAA Approved model available)  via Panbo

Forbidden Island Cocktail Competition

Strangely, this is not promoted on FI’s own website.


Forbidden Island is pleased to announce its first ever Customer Cocktail Competition! Now is your chance to gain an incredibly small amount of fame and glory and have your cocktail featured on our Fall Cocktail Specials menu! So get to work and craft your masterpiece:


  • All recipes must be submitted by email to no later than 12:00PM PDT September 12th for consideration.
  • All recipes should be expressed in ounces, (or fractions of ounces), dashes, or drops. No hot drinks.
  • Include detailed instructions including preparation (e.g. shaken/stirred/blended), name, garnish, and glassware.
  • Any spirit category is eligible- you don’t have to mix with rum, and no preference will be given to any particular base spirit.
  • Spirits selected should be of appropriate quality, but not over the top. In other words, recipes calling for $200-a-bottle cognac will have other ingredients substituted.
  • Seasonal & local products are always preferred. We can supply just about anything, however things like “pickled turkey gizzards” will be disqualified.
  • JUDGING: The top ten finalists will be selected by Martin, and then prepared and tasted blindly by our panel of judges- the Forbidden Island Staff. They will know what the name of the drink is and the ingredients but not whose recipe it is.
  • Grand Prize will be a Forbidden Island Gift Card, and of course your name on the specials menu. Plus the satisfaction that comes with “a job well done.”
  • Contest is open to members of our exclusive email list and readers of Tiki Central. It will help if we’ve seen your face in the bar at least once. 

There’s no time to lose! Get crackin’!

Three of my drinks have been submitted, I’ll be happy to see one of them in the top ten!

Today’s mermaid


Mmmmm….   beer.

Outrigger vahines of the week





Peggy and I had a chance last night to visit our favorite watering hole, Alameda’s own Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge, where we signed up for the Kill-Devil Club and started in on the list of 97 rums.    Only two patrons so far had made it all the way through the list, and their names were displayed in places of honor above the bar.  I found the David McMurray Trinidad and the Westerhall Plantation to both be very fine out of the rums sampled (David McMurray, flight of five; Westerhall; Vizcaya VSOP).  But the real treat of the evening was the British Royal Navy Imperial Rum, the very stuff served to officers and VIPs on special occaisons, as detailed below.   And I’m here to tell you it was worth it, even at $60/oz.  Smooth, even at 108 proof; richly flavored yet not oversweet, delicious.  If you can’t make it to Alameda you can buy it here, only $2999.99 for the 1 Imperial gallon jug and presentation set pictured above.

Some more information:
British Royal Navy Imperial Rum Tasting Notes
F. Paul Pacult, The Spirit Journal 
Appearance  The deep color is mahogany with ruby core highlights.
Nose  Impeccable purity. Immediately after the pour, exotic scents of rubber tire, lanolin, and black pepper greet the olfactory sense. With time in the glass, the aroma slowly begins to unfold in the second whiff, offering mature, rind-like scents of bacon fat and poppy seed. In the third sniffing, the fat/oil component takes charge, providing a substantial aromatic phase. In the fourth and last nosing pass, following nearly ten minutes of aeration, indistinct notes of herbs (ginger? cardamom?), cocoa butter, molasses, and steamed asparagus get added to the peculiar aromatic stew.
Taste  The palate entry is unctuous, layered, intensely honeyed, and molasses-like—the midpalate stage is opulent, cocoa-like, buttery, and shows traces of rancio.
Finish The aftertaste is long and is laden with ripe and sweet tastes of dried fruit, almond butter, and oak resin. Most of all, I liked the ethereal touch of rancio on the tongue
Comments An interesting gorilla of a rum.

 and from  Rum Numb Davey on Tiki Central

Martiki: If you think $62 a dram is steep for some premium rum, let me illuminate my most prized spirit in my collection (along with my sole bottle of 50 year old Macallan). The “brand” is really not a brand at all but a description. The product is British Royal Navy Imperial Rum, and it is, in fact, the REAL deal. Pussers and Lambs have some legitimacy as Royal Navy Rum, but the stock of wonderfully aged alembic spirits distilled in Jamaica and Guyana that were aged in American oak barrels and casked at 108 proof was the British Vatted Rum for issue to the Jack Tars on deck. Most TCer’s probably know the infamous day, July 31, 1970 – known as Black Tot Day, when the Royal Navy admiralty suspended the maritime privilege of one half gill, or one eighth of a pint to be issued out by the Ship Purser with great solemnity and pomp (the original measure was a gill, which is equal to one quarter pint or 5 US Ounces –Military bearing?).

The American Navy ended the Rum ration on September 1, 1862, the Limey’s closed the Grog shop in 1970, and the PC cops finally did our neighbors to the North –the Canadian Navy served their last measure to sailors on December 2, 1971. (Take off, Hoseheads!)

In any event, when the Royal Navy decreased the ration from one gill to one half gill on January 1, 1851, Rum brokers experimented with blending and the blending formulas eventually became closely guarded secrets. They carried over the surplus rum blend akin to the Solera system for Sherry or in the old Cognac Houses. This created layered, rich, noble rum with distinct rancio. Since the quantity of the ration of rum was reduced the Sea Lords demanded that QUALITY standards increased. After, the notorious Black Tot Day in 1970, the remaining stock silently aged in bonded underground warehouses in Jamaica under the authority and supervision of the British Government who owned the old stock. His Royal Highness Prince Andrew, Duke of York, served a served in the Royal Navy, seeing action in the Falklands War aboard HMS Invincible. The British Royal Navy Imperial Rum was served at his wedding to Fergie, and at various other Royal functions. All the while the rum slumbered away with only small sales to generate resources to benefit Royal Navy’s Sailor’s Fund. Finally, a shrewd and charming Oil Man named Mark Andrews from Houston, Texas acquired the remaining stock of 650 wicker-covered ceramic demijohns. He previously purchased Knappogue Castle in Co. Clare, Eire in 1966.

He found vast stocks of aged Irish whiskey in the cellar, which he inherited, making the Old Irish Manse a fantastic investment. Texas Oil went bust, and a new venture was born. When Life gives you lemons you make lemonade (or cocktails)! With this twist of fate Knappogue Castle Irish Single Malt Whiskey was born. He started Great Spirits (An Independent Liquor Import Company), which has since evolved to Castle Brands, after a merger with Roaring Water Bay Spirits, an Irish company that has enjoyed great success with its Boru Vodka and Clontarf Irish Whiskey.

In any event, they not only have the British Royal Navy Imperial Rum stock, but they produce a premium branded rum under the Sea Wynde label comprised of five pot still rums from Jamaica and Guyana. I definitely like Sea Wynde, and still have a couple of bottle from the launch. After all, Jim Murray was the consultant on the brand and he consulted with us when I worked for Cadenheads. Spirits Journalist and publisher, F. Paul Pacult of the prestigious Spirit Journal gives it his highest recommendation, which is for him a five star rating. As good as, Sea Wynde is, it cannot touch the absolute sublime complexity of the BRNIR. I obtained a fantastic demijohn of BRNIR (wholesale) after the launch. I tasted it with Mark Andrews at the second Whisky Expo at the Nikko Hotel in San Fran a few years ago. I knew it was not practical, but I finagled a bottle at wholesale from my Brands Manager at Southern Wine & Spirits for a whopping $3,500.00 clams. That’s’ right people my wholesale price was $3,500.00! I can see the blank stares in all across Tikidom thinking what kind of fool old Rum Numb Davey is just blowing his retirement like a chump. Consider this, I am a bachelor and was always impractical. Like my moniker implies I loves me some rum, and this is very special rum! It is history in the bottle, and it is a beautiful package. I have reluctantly shared some, at various times, since I purchased it in 2002. It is mostly a Christmas, New Years and Birthday dram for me, and I do mean dram – 1 solitary ounce. I keep it away from my own home bar, and stashed with my vintage wine collection in a climate controlled cold storage. I know Rum Jungle offers the demijohn for $5,000 to High Rollers in Mandalay Bay, and although RJ is expensive they do have about 150 or so rums, and worth a visit to the gambling Rummy. I think Asia de Cuba restaurants stock BRNIR which can be ordered by the snifter (Garçon, pour it in a Tiki Mug, Please!)

The British Royal Navy Imperial 108.6-proof rum is a beautifully packaged classic ceramic demijohn encased in wicker, along with a glass decanter, funnel and stopper. A normal retail price should be around$5,500 to $6,000. If you cannot afford it, perhaps a bottle of Bacardi Millennium Rum which retailed for an impressive $800 might fit your budget! Back to my bottle of Ancient Macallan, while celebrating Hogmany in Edinburgh in 2000, I paid (on my credit card) a whopping sum of £1900.00 for a rare bottle of 1949 Vintage Macallan Millennium 50 Y.O. Single Malt and it is UNOPENED in its’ wooden and copper case. That’s nothing, on April17, 2002, an unlabelled bottle of ‘The Macallan 60 Years Old’, was sold at auction, by McTear’s in Glasgow, for £20,150 – setting a new world record for the most expensive bottle of Scotch whisky. Park Avenue Liquor in NYC lists the Macallan Millennium 50 y.o. for $5,000 now.

Wooden Ships and Iron Men

and Plenty of Booze

On 23 August 1779, the USS Constitution set sail from Boston loaded with 475 officers and men, 48,600 gallons of water, 74,000 cannon shot, 11,500 pounds of black powder and 79,400 gallons of rum. Her mission: to destroy and harass English shipping.

On 6 October, she made Jamaica, took on 826 pounds of flour and 68,300 gallons of rum. Three weeks later the Constitution reached the Azores, where she provisioned with 550 pounds of beef and 6,300 gallons of Portuguese wine.

On 18 November, the ship set sail for England where her crew captured and scuttled 12 English merchant vessels and took aboard their rum.

But the Constitution had run out of shot. Nevertheless, she made her way unarmed up the Firth of Clyde for a night raid. Here her landing party captured a whiskey distillery, transferred 40,000 gallons aboard and headed for home.

On 20 February 1780, the Constitution arrived in Boston with no cannon shot, no food, no powder, no rum, no whiskey. Just 48,600 gallons of water.


Tiki dreadnaughts

There is a class of craft that can only be described as tiki dreadnaughts — super-sized, super-stylin’ booze-cruise catamarans!


Captain Beans’ Dinner Cruise is Kona’s original. Let the majestic “Tamure” show you the Kona sunset on an ocean excursion like no other. Your two-hour cruise starts out with tropical cocktails from the full-service bar and plenty of aloha from members of the crew. Indulge in a bountiful island feast and live music with a mix of Hawaiian songs and popular favorites. Then, a hula show featuring modern and traditional hula livens things up even more. Beautiful hula dancers tell stories through dance, and eventually inspire you to join in. Before you know it, you’ll be singing, dancing and creating memories to last a lifetime.

 Below,  Captain Beans former vessel, undated photo:

And in Florida:



TIKKI BEACH BOAT CHARTER   Rent our party yacht today! Boarding from all of South Florida!!!