The Scorpion, like many tiki cocktails, has gone through countless iterations, from a gin and wine-laced libation to this contemporary version of Trader Vic’s 1946 recipe (even he prescribes several riffs in his own books). It’s difficult to know where the original recipe ends and the contemporary begins, especially when so much rum is involved. But it is thought that, while in Hawaii, Vic first tried the punch from which the Scorpion was modeled, which mostly likely contained okolehao, an indigenous spirit distilled from the Polynesian ti plant. Orgeat is a constant ingredient in most interpretations and is key to the balance of dark rum and fruit.
- 10 ounces rum, añejo
- 2 ounces cognac
- 3 ounces orgeat
- 4 ounces lemon juice
- 3 ounces orange juice
Garnish: freshly grated cinnamon, cinnamon sticks, grapefruit peel, orchids and/or flaming lime shell
- Add all ingredients to a blender with 1 cup of crushed ice.
- Blend quickly and pour into a Scorpion bowl, or portion out into individual tiki mugs.
- Add several large ice cubes to bowl or mugs.
- To garnish, add freshly grated cinnamon, cinnamons sticks, a grapefruit peel or orchids.
- For a flaming lime shell, invert half of a lime and place in the volcano of a Scorpion bowl, or atop an individual cocktail. Pour in a splash of overproof rum, and carefully light with a match or a lighter.
- Be sure to extinguish flaming lime shell before attempting a sip. Serve with straws.
This drink is proportioned as punch bowl. It can also be batched individually—just divide the measurements by five to create a single cocktail.