A return to the Island

Posted by TraderTiki on December 20th, 2007 — Posted in Places, Rum

and by the time I was out the door, I was missing it already.

Forbidden Island sign

I gush, I do, but it’s well worth the praise. If you haven’t yet been to Forbidden Island, go now. Especially now that hot drinks are on the menu.

I was greeted at the door by bartender Jessica, who had expected me to arrive and had a special treat she had made for the house, a Bacon-infused Bourbon! Yes, at first it was a bit confusing even to a bacon aficionado like me (bacon=good), but the flavor was wonderfully savory. The Maple Leaf she would later serve proved to be well met by the Bacon bourbon, and I would advise its potential as part of a fully balanced breakfast.

Then, the man, the master, the minister came out, and much drinking was to be had.

Nui Nui at Forbidden Island

The night started off with a Nui Nui. Seeing as I had made Martin a few when he had come up, I figured I’d see how his house’s chops were faring, and they were fantastic indeed. Complex, spicy, multi-layered and fantastic, it acts as a great introduction to the crowd that expects anything Tiki to involve pineapple juice and an Orchid garnish. This was one of the first I had to make out of Sippin’ Safari, and is now part of the regular menu at the Galley.

Dead Reckoning

Following the Nui Nui was the equally great Dead Reckoning, as developed by Martin. It’s a really strange list of ingredients that don’t seem like they would work well, but make some unexpected flavors, with the tart shining through what seems like should be a bucket of sweetness. Maple Syrup and Tawny port, who would have thunk it?

I had to take a bit of a breather to sample some of the other wares behind the bar, have some conversation, and welcome some of the Ohana from Tiki Central. Some of the items sampled included Creme de Violette, an aged Genever (mind-blowing), some Batavia Arrack, Martin’s own Falernum, Hibiscus Liqueur, and a few other odds and ends.

Seeing as ’tis the season, the warm drinks menu was just printed and fresh up. Having read Wayne Curtis’ …and a bottle of Rum, I’ve been dying to try a nice flip, and answering that call was the recently introduced Flippin’ Flip, a heated concoction of beer, ginger syrup, lemon and rum. This was a nice winter warmer, and helped soothe a stomach that was starting to hit the motions after a few days of boozing it up. The beer was not a bitter point at all, but the hops were nice and aromatic. The fizz once the glass hit bottom was a different texture than I was expecting, but the drink was very well made, and I plan on throwing together some of my own using the local Bridgeport Ebenezer Ale.

151 SwizzleAfter this, being quite deep in my cups and horribly indecisive, I went with Martin’s suggestion, which was a 151 Swizzle. Three drinks and then some into the night, and I’m being served 1 and 1/2 ounces of 151 Demerara! The man likes me, but obviously hates my liver. The nutmeg on top provided a rather clever nose, and the scent lasted as a flavor throughout the drink. It just looks great contrasted with the green lime and mint too. The Pernod acts as a nice carrier, but gets surprisingly overwhelmed by the spicy smokiness of the Demerara. I’m so used to Pernod dominating, so this was very nice. Continuing to gush on the garnish, however, the wrapped napkin is one of the most interesting bits I’ve yet seen, and added a nice touch that didn’t make it, appearance-wise, the next brownish thing in a chimney glass.

As we approached last call, I was soon surprised with the last drink of the night, the “Stutz”. Stutz, stutz…The now where have I seen that name before. Well, anyway, the drink was well made, with a lot of tartness and sweetness balancing each other out, and letting the spice from some cinnamon syrup come out and play.

Last call came up, and what did I order? A big ol’ glass of ice water, with a dash of lemon of course. You have to know your limits, and I’ve found that drinking a nice big glass of water next to my cocktails helps with cleansing my mouth for the next sip, and cleansing my bloodstream for the next morning.

Just past midnight, the doors were closed and we parted ways once more, and I returned the next morning to Portland. The Missus, however, just left to California to visit with family for the holidays, and for her own visit to Forbidden Island.

My many thanks to Martin and Rebecca for their hospitality and conversation, to Jessica for her dedication and talent behind the bar, and Hanford, Mai Tai and Coco Loco from Tiki Central for chit chat and a sharing of drinks. I may call Portland home now, but never feel too far away when sitting at the bar.

If you liked that post, then try these...

SF Crawl 2008, Bamboo Hut
The second stop on our San Francisco trip is the sweet and petite Bamboo Hut on Broadway.

SF Crawl 2008, Tonga Room
Tonga Room Entrance Though not the first stop on the crawl, our first stop in San Francisco found us at the Tonga Room in the Fairmont Hotel.

Oct. 21st, The Final Tiki Tuesday at Teardrop!
Well folks, hopefully you're hearing it here first.


Comment by Dr. Bamboo

Just HAD to include photos, didn’cha? ;-)

Not like my mouth was already watering from the descriptions!

Posted on December 21, 2007 at 5:09 am

Comment by Rick


Let’s plan a trip out to San Francisco this year. Every night can include a trip to FI. We could probably stay with Adam, who is lucky enough to live nearby.


Bacon lover huh? Does that mean you cure your own? Please say it’s true.

Posted on December 21, 2007 at 4:03 pm

Comment by Wayne Curtis

Mmmmm…. bacon-infused bourbon.

Must… experiment… with…. bacon… and ….rum.

Posted on December 21, 2007 at 4:38 pm

Comment by Rick

I wonder if you could easily incorporate an intense rum into a cure without screwing things up?

Posted on December 21, 2007 at 4:41 pm

Comment by TraderTiki

Rick, that’s an experiment I was waiting on for next year. I might have to accelerate my plans after seeing some pictures of home cured bacon.

Too many tempting ideas here. There’s a local southern food place that makes Praline Bacon. I think Rum-Praline bacon could make it just that much better!

Bacon and Rum go together like Rumaki and a Navy Grog… perfectly.

Posted on December 21, 2007 at 5:22 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a comment

Subscribe without commenting