Mai Tai Recipe

A vacationer's favourite, the Mai Tai has more history and restraint behind it than you may realize.

April 17, 2015

By Neal McLennan / Photo: Vitor Munhoz

How did the Mai Tai go from cultural pillar to a drink ordered by people who think the Riviera is in Mexico? Maybe because “serious” cocktails like the daiquiri and margarita were corrupted over time but the Mai Tai has always been ready to party. That doesn’t mean break out the blender or slushy machine. Restraint, like that practised by Oakland’s Trader Vic Bergeron or L.A.’s Don the Beachcomber, both of whom claim to have invented the drink, will yield a powerful concoction that’s balanced and refreshing, and has just the right amount of kitsch.

1 oz of rhum agricole

(if you can’t source just double the Jamaican rum)

1 oz Jamaican rum (Appleton is our choice)
½ oz Cointreau
Juice from one fresh lime (about 1 oz)
¼ oz simple syrup

¼ oz orgeat syrup

Add all ingredients in a shaker, top with crushed ice, and
vigorously stir. Strain into a double old-fashioned glass filled

with more crushed ice, and garnish with a sprig of mint.


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