Chockie Tom’s Mai Tai riff was part of a project to tell the history of New York City’s Chinatown via tiki cocktails. Using a five-spice orgeat, the drink brings a savory and spicy element to the tiki classic. The drink was developed in an effort to make something both recognizable within Chinese culinary traditions and accessible to people who may have only experienced Chinese American food, which heavily influenced tiki culture.
- 1 ounce Jamaican rum, preferably Hamilton Jamaican Pot Still Black Rum
- 1/2 ounce strong-aroma baijiu, preferably Ming River Baijiu
- 1/2 ounce rhum agricole, preferably Clément VSOP Rhum Agricole Vieux
- 1/2 ounce dry Curaçao
- 1/2 ounce five-spice peanut orgeat (see Editor’s Note)
- 1/2 ounce lemon juice
Garnish: pineapple leaves, orange wedge dusted with chile sugar, basil
- Combine all ingredients in a shaker tin and shake with ice.
- Strain into a glass with ice.
- Garnish with pineapple leaves, an orange dusted with chile sugar, and basil.
Five-Spice Peanut Orgeat
1. Pour 2 cups of hot water over 2 cups of peanuts (or any nut of choice), cover with cling film and let rest for at least 12 hours.
2. Reserving the water, strain the nuts, then add the nuts’ soaking water, equal amounts of sugar (2 cups), and 1 teaspoon of five-spice blend for every cup of syrup to a pan.
3. Heat gently, until the sugar is dissolved. Don’t let the mixture boil.
4. Add a pinch of MSG, and stir to combine.
5. Cool, add to a container and refrigerate. Keeps, refrigerated, for 1 month.