If the idea of tropical drinks brings to mind kitschy brightly colored liquors poured from spinning slushie machines, take note: Hyper-serious drink fanatics Zach Wilks and Greg Wilson of Wilks & Wilson (212 W. 10th St., 317-294-2890, wilksandwilson.com) have launched a line of syrups that pay these beachfront classics their due. Their six organic infused elixirs can make any home mixologist feel confident enough to jump behind the bar and shake it like Tom Cruise in Cocktail.
In fact, with Wilks & Wilson’s orgeat (pronounced “or-ZHAT”)—made with almonds; organic evaporated cane juice; rose water; and gomme, a concoction of organic evaporated cane juice, gum acacia, and water—anyone can make a surprisingly simple and beautifully balanced real mai tai (above). The silly umbrellas are up to you.
The syrups ($12.99 each) are available at Goose the Market, Vine & Table, and The Pantry at City Market. Here’s the Wilks & Wilson mai tai recipe:
Recipe: The W&W Mai Tai
2 ounces Jamaican rum 1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
1/2 ounce orange Curaçao 1/2 ounce W&W Orgeat syrup
1/2 ounce W&W Gomme syrup Fresh mint sprig
Instructions: Fill a cocktail glass with ice cubes and add the rum, lime juice, Curaçao, and two syrups. Cover and shake well, then strain into a Collins glass. Pack the glass with crushed ice, push the mint sprig into the ice and serve. Serves 1.
Photo by Tony Valainis
This article appears as a companion piece to an article in the September 2012 issue.