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tokyopix's Profile

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White Smoke Texas smokehouse - anyone been?

I'm sure you're right. I found out some more info on their facebook page. It seems the first smoker had a malfunction and filled the place with smoke (but at least not fire). I also wondered if that caused the landlord to simply not want a smoker in his/her property.

I had actually grown fond of White Smoke and really enjoyed the sides and cocktails especially, but it was very local for me. If it moves far from the original spot I don't imagine we'll get there often.

I wish them luck, though. It must be so difficult to have something like that interrupt your business especially when it's still rather new.

Mar 30, 2014
tokyopix in Japan

White Smoke Texas smokehouse - anyone been?

Last year I read that there had been a problem with their smoker and they were closing until early 2014 which seemed like such a long time. Now the website says they are not opening up again in Azabujuban and are moving and won't open again until the summer of this year. I wonder what happened. It doesn't say to where they are relocating.

Mar 29, 2014
tokyopix in Japan

James Bond: Drinking watered-down martinis?

Trinity Hall here!

Jan 08, 2014
tokyopix in Spirits

Help me name this drink

You said you wouldn't use jam in a drink, not restricting it to this drink in particular. I was commenting on that. I can see jam being used as a sweet element in a drink successfully. Seeds would easily filter out.

But to answer your question, yes, drinks can have more than one element bringing similar tastes to the party (more than one bitter, sweet, etc.). Doesn't seem unusual at all, really, since here they bring sweet + alcohol + orange and sweet + blackberry so each one is providing sweet plus a flavor the mixer was looking for.

I haven't used jam, but it seems like an interesting alternative to syrups to me.

JMF - have you tried the "breakfast martini"?

Dec 17, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Help me name this drink

I also don't see jam as any different from flavored syrups, simple syrups and liqueurs. It's just the sweet element. Marmalade would also provide a bitter element. Just b/c there is something sweet involved doesn't mean the cocktail will be overly sweet. A balanced cocktail will be a balanced cocktail.

And having just begun my exploration of tiki drinks I can assure that a paper umbrella in no way signals an overly sweet cocktail! Again, if it's balanced it's balanced, doesn't matter what non-food garnish you see.

Dec 17, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Yuzu cocktails

Hmmmmm, a yuzu Mai Tai. Interesting!

Nov 21, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Yuzu cocktails

Thanks so much, Silverjay, for that shochu primer! All the complexities are exactly why I didn't feel qualified at all to experiment with it in the next week and a half! Now with your notes I'll be able to at least start tasting shochu and gradually get to know it.

I am in Tokyo and I haven't been to Ishinohana, so many thanks for that tip. I will definitely try it out. My Japanese is advanced beginner at best, would that hamper me at Ishinohana? If so I can always wrangle a friend to join me.

Nov 21, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Yuzu cocktails

How lovely to get baskets of fresh yuzu!

Thanks for the suggestion. I don't know much about shochu. The yuzu scent really made me think gin but I could give shochu a go.

Nov 20, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Yuzu cocktails

I'm looking for a way to really showcase yuzu in a cocktail. I find yuzu has a sightly piney sent/flavor so I think it should go well with maybe a lower juniper gin. I've googled but I seem to find a lot of recipes where the yuzu only plays a small part or is used in the form of syrup. I was hoping to use the fresh fruit itself.

Has anyone had a really great yuzu cocktail they like to make?

Shall I just try replacing lemon juice in a lemony recipe (say a French 75) with fresh yuzu juice? I honestly don't think I'm at the point where I can create cocktails on my own.

Yuzu is a real symbol of fall/winter around here and I'd love to have a drink that showcases it for my Japanese Thanksgiving dinner next weekend.

Nov 20, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Halloween Cocktails

I was totally with you until the brain!! Coming off my recent tiki kick, I have everything to make this. I might try it w/o the brain.

My husband's birthday is Halloween and I'm always looking for something for his party. I usually default to just stuff he likes as the theme, but if I could get some good Halloween drinks going I'd be one happy hostess!

I also thought of the Corpse Reviver family, but after that I'm kind of stuck.

Oct 28, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

It went SO well! Thanks to all the great info here and the generous folks who offered it up.

Oahu does need a good cocktail spot. I like beachy, but my dream would be in one of the great, old mid-century open-air lobbies. Lewers and the space right outside of Lewers could be it, and some of the cocktails are good. But they aren't great. The Halekulani is also showing a frightening tendency to mess with some of their great, original mid-century features. I hope they don't muck it up completely like they did to the (former) open-air part of the Kahala. :(

Oct 04, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

I was just about to respond, "You mean 'Todd is god' Todd Rundgren?" Heart!!!!

Oct 02, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

Sadly, I don't have a great Honolulu cocktail place. My husband wasn't a cocktail aficionado when he lived there (through undergrad) and now we go back with a toddler in tow which curtails most evening activities.

Lewer's is in the Hale Kulani. Sometimes they have nice live jazz, but that's hit or miss. The same goes for the cocktails, though it's a good place to just request something made the way you want it.

Besides the Mai Tai at HWaK, I haven't had a single tiki drink on Oahu. Sad. Perhaps there's a business opportunity here....

Oct 02, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

Well, it was a HUGE success. Thanks beyond words for all the great info and help here. My guest (lead by a German lawyer) decided to just work down the menu, tasting all the cocktails.

The night's big winner was the Cradle of Life. Not just for the flaming garnish, either. People really liked the drink. One guest who is not a cocktail person pronounced it, "balanced".

I put the info for each drink on the menu (maker, bar, date) and that sparked lots of great conversation.

I would say that tiki drinks, though involved, are great drinks and also great for cocktail newbies. They seemed very approachable for everyone.

Mind, these are not for the faint-hearted! Strong stuff. I served 1/2 to 2/3 of the original volume for each cocktail and it was still a lot of booze! But we had good Hawai'ian food and lots of snack and I made key lime pie for dessert and everyone seemed to walk pretty straight when they let.

Thanks again to everyone for sharing your knowledge, experience and personal take on tikis!!

Sep 28, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

I puffy pink hear the Hale Kulani. We had our Hawai'ian wedding there. ( we were legally married at the Carlyle Hotel in NYC and had our religious ceremony in Normandy, France, but we had a blessing HI for all of my husband's friend who couldn't afford to travel so far) I always think it is a shame that they have this brilliant mid-century modern place and don't do great cocktails. Lewer's Lounge is a better bet than House Without a Key cocktail-wise. But we often meet people at HWaK for cocktails and you can hear some pretty music there some nights.

Such a missed opportunity on the great cocktail program. But I still love it It and the open air lobby at the Kahala are my happy places on Oahu, even though they have seriously messed with the Kahala.

Sep 28, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

The party is about to start. Many, many thanks to everyone who commented here. I couldn't have done it without you. I"ll report back on how it went.

Mahalo!!!

Sep 28, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

I liked this one better, thank you so much!!

Sep 27, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

I've got everything on this list!!! Yay!! I'm going to give it a try. I even have guava nectar.

I did blend my first one. :(

I did exactly 1 teaspoon grenadine and 1/8 Pernod. Interestingly, I tried it first w/o the Pernod (which I'm not fond of) and thought it better with.

I'll try this a try the guava swap and see what happens.

Many thanks!

Sep 27, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

Hmmmm. I didn't love this. I made it according to this recipe, following it to a T. I used Flor de Cana and Appleton and made my Don's Mix with fresh juice. The only think I can think of is that I couldn't find OFW for love or money, so I used a grenadine I found (I can't find a link. It says Maison Fondee, all labeling in French but made in Japan???).

It just tasted boozy and like a party drink, not interesting. Like a kin to a LI Iced Tea or something.

Could I have done something wrong? Should I just make fresh pom juice + sugar and bag the OFW? This one was somehow flat for me which I realize is a ridiculous statement given everything that's going on in this drink!

Sep 27, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

I tried it last night and my husband liked it, liked using the Sailor Jerry and liked the flaming garnish, so I think we'll add this to our menu and call it a day!

I'm not a huge green Chartreuse fan, but I tasted the drink pre- and post- and had to admit it was tasty pre- but tastier post-, so it's a good excuse to move along some Chartreuse as well!

Sep 26, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

I tried this with the Cradle of Life. It was fun and the hubs really liked it.

Poor man got 3 hours of sleep the night before and when he got home I made him taste test 5 different tiki drinks. I'm surprised he didn't do a face plant after the second one.

Sep 26, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

Poking around a bit I found this on Chowhound:

http://www.chow.com/recipes/28168-cra...

It appealed because my husband, bless his heart, bought a bottle of the Sailor Jerry's spiced rum when we were out at the specialty shop. He liked the label, I kid you not. And we've got everything else, so if anyone has good things to say about it, I'll give it a go (minus the flames).

Sep 26, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

Made this tonight after finally getting my Bols Dry Orange and making my dark SS. I used Lemon Hart and Myer's for the rums. I thought it was good. My husband liked it, too. He thought it was a great Mai Tai. But he asked where the float was. I told him it wasn't authentic. He was happy with the taste but thought the float looked nice. His go-to Mai Tai is at the Hale Kulani hotel and I think they do it.

In any event, it was a winner!

Sep 26, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

Finally got to test this tonight. Really tasty! I had to make my own Coco Lopez. I went with 1 c. coconut cream, 1/4 c. light corn syrup and 1 tsp Monin coconut syrup. I don't know why I added that last ingredient. I think I was afraid the coconut flavor was getting lost in the sweet. But I had heard that Coco Lopez is very sweet so I tried to make it quite sweet.

I thought it was very tasty. I'm super happy with this drink!

Sep 26, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

What classic cocktail would you suggest?

I think this one is tough. This way my favorite drink for years, but I found many, many, many bars couldn't make it/didn't know what it was. I've had it served on the rocks and with fruit and cherry garnishes and at one point I think soda water was involved. I gave up on Sidecars looooong ago unless it's clear that the establishment is really into classic/craft cocktails.

Oh, oh, and once I had it with some sort of bottled lemon juice. It was perfectly clear!!!!

Sep 26, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

Thanks, will do!

Sep 25, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

I think I'm going to need to do this, too. Just testing recipes this week I can see that measuring 1/4 oz of 8 different things is going to be way too slow. Is it okay to batch the Mai Tai, Painkiller and Zombi somehow (like partially batching as you mentioned)? I did a lot of scaling up as a pastry chef and back down now that I'm only baking at home. I, too, got some funky measurements that way. But these days I just don't need chocolate glaze that starts with 3 lbs of butter!

Sep 25, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

Many thanks - I will! And speaking of being back in the states, I'd be so happy to bring you something from Japan if you like in thanks for all your help and sharing all your knowledge. Don't know where you're based, but I'll be in Philly for Christmas and NYC at the end of December. If there's anything from here I can bring you (perhaps drop off at bar where you know folks who can hold it for you?) please let me know. Since you are in the biz I know you probably have connections to get anything you want, but I'd be happy to bring something along if there's anything that appeals to you!

Sep 25, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

Perfect - thanks!

Sep 24, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits

Tiki drinks party - some questions

Is this the correct recipe for Don's Mix?

http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/20...

Sep 24, 2013
tokyopix in Spirits