kelly magyarics

washington, d.c.-based wine, spirits & lifestyle writer / wine educator

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Cool Coconut Cocktails

Maybe it’s because I’ve been dreaming about my upcoming Hawaiian vacation and have Tiki drinks and palm trees on the brain, but it seems to be the summer of coconut at D.C. bars. I’m not referring to the ubiquitous frozen Pina Colada (which, when made correctly is deliciously decadent and infinitely cooling in its own right), but to other ways D.C. mixologists are cracking open creative uses behind the bar for this tropical fruit. For all the recipes and drinks, read my article on Washington Life.

Tiki Tonic Estadio Bar Manager Adam Bernbach says coconut milk’s ability to be at once both creamy and refreshing makes it a great ingredient in a summer drink. Bernbach has more than several house-made recipes for tonic that are completely different but equally delicious. This version mixes ginger-infused syrup with coconut milk, lime juice and a dose of the powder from the bark of the cinchona tree, the ingredient that gives tonic its indicative bitterness.

1 ½ oz Rhum Neisson Blanc 3 ½ oz Tiki Tonic (see Note) Lime wheel, mint sprig and freshly grated nutmeg, for garnish

Add rum and tonic to an ice-filled Collins glass. Stir gently, and garnish with lime, mint and nutmeg.

For the Tiki tonic, combine 14 oz. ginger syrup (diced ginger infused overnight in simple syrup), 4 oz. coconut milk, 4 oz. freshly squeezed lime juice, 10 oz. water and 1 teaspoon red cinchona powder. Whisk, strain and funnel into a siphon.

For more ideas, read my article on Washington Life.