Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Mai Tais for Haiti

I've only got a second... but wanted to quickly post about the awesome benefit we're doing at FI tonight for Haiti:

Across the globe, people are uniting to raise money for the earthquake victims of Haiti.

Please join Forbidden Island on Tuesday, January 26, and help us join in the relief efforts. A special, one night only Haitian Mai Tai featuring our beloved Haitian Rhum Barbancourt will be available, and a portion of the proceeds of each Haitian Mai Tai will be donated to relief efforts. In addition, a raffle will be held with wonderful FI collectibles, dinner at Trader Vics, some amazing limited edition Trader Vics mugs and other tiki schwag.

So mark your calendars and get ready to raise your glasses, your spirits, and funds for Haitian relief.

More info about the event here : http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=256528187634&ref=mf

I'll see YOU at the Island!

-- Suzanne

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Photo Contest Winners!

Special Congratulations to Sue Trowbridge, our drawing winner for last week's photo contest. Sue has won one Black Orchid Cocktail on me tonight! Sue's photo entry was this photo:

Our second winner is a photo (actually a set of photos) by Will Anzenberger. These are really stunning photos, Will. Thank you!

The Flame:

The Pour:

I'll see YOU at the Island!


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Press release: BLACK ORCHID SESSIONS provide custom gourmet cocktails at Forbidden Island, Alameda

January 15, 2010

Alameda, CA.
Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge announces Black Orchid Sessions

On February 10, 2010, Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge rolls out a unique cocktail experience... custom made cocktails, created on the spot based on customer requests. On the heels of her wildly successful Wednesday night cocktail series the Black Orchid Club, mixologist Suzanne Long is taking cocktail creation to an even higher level by inventing cocktails on the spot, using premium ingredients and the suggestions of the imbiber. Each week, a focus ingredient will be announced. Focus ingredients will include Suzanne Long's custom made cocktail syrups and liqueurs, and some specialty spirits. The focus ingredient will be used to create each guest's custom cocktail, and a special weekly specials menu will also be available.

"In my experience, creating an excellent custom cocktail is similar to a Jazz recording session," says Long. "Creating custom cocktails for my guests on the spot is something that I already do. I'm just opening the doors to the public so everyone can participate. With my custom made syrups, the premium spirits and fresh juices we have here at Forbidden Island, and your input about what you feel like tasting tonight, we can together create the perfect, exceptionally crafted cocktail - right here in front of you!"

Black Orchid Sessions will take place on Wednesday evenings at Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge, the very hip 1960s style tiki lounge in the heart of Alameda. More details about the Black Orchid Club and Black Orchid Sessions can be found on Suzanne Long's blog, Shakin' Rum and Pineapples - http://rumnpineapple.blogspot.com and at http://twitter.com/BlackOrchidClub.

WHERE: Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge, 1304 Lincoln, Alameda.

WHEN: Wednesdays, 5PM-12AM beginning February, 10, 2010
CONTACT: Suzanne Long (manager), suzanne@forbiddenislandalameda.com
Michael Thanos (owner) info@forbiddenislandalameda.com
Will Viharo (publicist), will@forbiddenislandalameda.com

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Tonight! Week 11 of the Black Orchid Club!

We've made it to Week 11, and we're rapidly approaching the end of the Black Orchid Club! As you know, the 13 weeks will be up the last Wednesday of January, and the Reckoning Party is coming up on February 3rd. I know that many of you have quite a few if not all of the cards, and now's the time to start letting me know how many you have so I can start getting all of the prizes ready. I've got some awesome stuff lined up for prizes and am very excited about the Reckoning Party.

Tonight, however, there is a special small contest happening, and it is photo related. Tonight, come in to FI and take a photo of the Black Orchid cocktail. Any media will do - fancy camera, cell phone camera, spy lapel pin camera, whatever you have on hand - and get your photos to me by Monday of next week (Jan 18, before midnight Pacific time), and you'll be entered to win your Black Orchid cocktail free (I'll pay for it myself!) on Jan 20. Two winners will be chosen - one via random drawing, and one for the most interesting, creative, beautiful, funny, or otherwise entertaining. Each photo entered is worth on drawing ticket (so if you have 20 photos, your name goes into the hat 20 times). Every photo entered must have the cocktail in it... but the rest is up to you! I'll announce the winners here on the blog by Wednesday, Jan 20, before 5pm. Photos may be submitted via email at rumnpineapple@gmail.com , or posted to your Twitter account with an @BlackOrchidClub (or you can bring a Polaroid into the bar). Can't wait for some awesome clicks!

I'll see YOU tonight for Week 11 at the Island!


Photo Credit: Paul McMillan and Gabriel Hurley of Zero Coordinate, Inc.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Happy 10th Birthday, Tiki Central!

Tiki Central is 10 years old today! 10 years of tiki madness, tiki ohana, the tiki world growing up together... ten years of the happiest and best times of my life. Thank you, Hanford Lemoore, for everything. I couldn't have done it without you!

Last night, we rang in Tiki Central's 10th with hugs and cheers and a 10 second countdown at Smuggler's Cove. Here's the photo proof:

Jason Untulis, Hanford Lemoore, Chad Spacey and myself, just after midnight.

Cheers to you, Hanford. I'll raise a glass to you at Forbidden Island tonight! I send this request out into the world, for all you tikiphiles out there... patronize your favorite (or at least your closest) tiki establishment tonight! Come and see me at FI, and I'll have a drink special for you! Or go to the Mai Kai, to Trader Vic's, to Kowloon, to the Bali Hai, to the Tiki Ti, to the Tonga Hut, to Smuggler's Cove, to the Kona Club, to Don the Beachcomber, to the Rendezvous, to Bahooka, to the Conga Lounge... if you can't make it out, raise a glass from home and join us live at Forbidden Island on UStream after 5pm Pacific time. We'll all have a mai tai tonight and long live the Ohana of Tiki!

I'll see YOU at the Island!


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Cape Verde Collins

Cape Verde Collins
Originally uploaded by Crease Monkey
A very popular collins with St Germain, Peychaud's and Angostura bitters.

Kiss of the Tiki - Week 7

Ginger, Peach, Rhum Barbancourt and champagne!

Alta California - photo by Creasemonkey

Another fantastic photo of a Black Orchid Cocktail... this one of the Alta California, made with Black Orchid special recipe orgeat, chocolate, and heavy cream. The glass is rimmed with sugar and crushed almonds.

Hau'oli Makahiki Hou! 2010 is here!

Hau'oli Makahiki Hou!

And here we are, in 2010. Hard to believe, as it all comes so quickly, but 2009 set in motion some wonderful things, and I'm looking forward to this year, and all the good it will bring.

I'd like to take a moment and extend my thanks to all of you. Thank you for reading along with my blog; thank you for watching the stream at Black Orchid Live; thank you for playing along with the Black Orchid Club, both in person and on Twitter; thank you for having such a good time with my puzzles and riddles; thank you for all of your wonderful compliments and encouragements; and most of all, thank you for the honor of allowing me to share my cocktails with you, and thank you for drinking them. Working at Forbidden Island is truly a dream come true for me, and getting to share with all of you is truly a highlight in my life. I'm honored to have the chance.

2010 is already looking to be a very exciting year. The Black Orchid Club will reach the end of these first 13 weeks at the end of January, followed by the Reconking Party on the 1st Wednesday of Feb, where we'll give out all of the prizes to our Black Orchid Club members, and basically have a great big bash. Afterward, I'll be moving into the commencement of the Black Orchid Sessions, where each week, on Wednesday, we'll have a focus ingredient - usually one of my homemade specialty syrups or liqueurs, but also sometimes focusing on a specific spirit - and a short menu of about three cocktails featuring that ingredient will be available. In addition, should you wish to, I will custom build a cocktail for you based on the focus ingredient and any other direction you give me... basically you'll tell me what you want, and I make it on the spot, using all of the premium fresh ingredients available at Forbidden Island. I guarantee you won't have an experience like this anywhere else!

It has been a few weeks since I've posted about cocktails from the Black Orchid Club, and so I'll recap the last few weeks of cocktails and cards:

Last week was the Cape Verde Collins. My inspiration for this cocktail came while I was living in Boston. I was throwing around the idea of using St. Germain in a Collins, because of how floral and delicate it is, while still being very present. It matches well with herbal gin notes. Around the same time, I had a great conversation with a friend about one of his recent trips to Cape Verde (one of many, for him) and how lemons there are intense and very sour, because of the volcanic soil. The image of a lemon tree growing inside the very fertile crater of a volcano never left me, and the two were put together into a delightful effervescent cocktail. The snow cone of crushed ice with Peychaud's and Angostura bitters lends depth of flavor... and of course, makes the drink look like a volcano with its branch of greenery!

Alta California
Legend has it that Spanish Missionaries brought the almond to California, and almond trees are known to have flourished in the gardens of California missions. This cocktail is made with my own homemade orgeat, creme de cacao, and heavy cream, with a shake of cocoa on top and rimmed with sugar and crushed almonds.

Kiss of the Tiki
A less complex cocktail, The Kiss of the Tiki is made with the clean flavors of peach and ginger, and Rhum Barbancourt from Haiti, with the sparkle of champagne on top and a candied ginger garnish. The inspiration for this cocktail came as I was telling a friend about the wonderful Ft. Lauderdale festival the Hukilau, and how in the tropical Florida night, tiki puts a spell on you. He was eating candied ginger as we talked.

In addition to these cocktails, several people have already solved the fortune cookie riddle, and earned their second wild card, along with the accompanying cocktail. Last week, I even had someone earn their wildcards by proxy - that is, they happened to be sitting next to someone who solved the riddle at the bar, and the person who solved it said the answer loudly enough to be heard by the people sitting next to him. When the new group heard the answer and saw the new wild card cocktail, they asked, "Is it okay for us to order it? We don't want to cheat! We overheard the answer just now, but didn't solve the riddle!" I told them, "All's fair in love, war, and cocktails."

If you're still working on the fortune cookie riddles, here are the three clues so far:

Love is Kewpie at Neptune

Four Score and Seven Years

Launching Clipper, China Bound (for easy use chopstick

Come on in tomorrow for week 10 of the Black Orchid Club, another fortune cookie riddle, and Otto's Grotto (Otto Von Stroheim's DJ night). This month, Otto spins Bond style spy tunes. If you haven't solved the fortune cookie riddle yet, maybe you'll be lucky enough to sit next to someone else who does.

I'll see YOU at the Island!

-- Suzanne