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  • The Original Mojito: Tiki Bar Cocktails for the Weekend

    Posted on July 30th, 2010 "Tiki Chris" Pinto 6 comments
    The Mojito

    The Mojito

    I’ve been drinking booze for a long time and have yet to find a cocktail as refreshing as The Mojito on a hot Florida day or steamy night.

    This rum drink can be traced all the way back to the 16th century, but it’s a fact that the modern version was made famous by Havana, Cuba hotels and cocktail lounges. This was Earnest Hemmingway’s favorite cocktail, and he put away plenty of them at Sloppy Joe’s (the original) in Key West and La Bodeguita del medio in Cuba.

    Here in Sunny South Florida one of our favorite rums to use is 10 Cane. You need a good quality white rum for this thing or it will taste like Sterno. Don’t skimp on the rum.

    Here’s the drill:

    1 teaspoon powdered sugar (simple syrup can be substituted)
    Juice from 1 lime (2 ounces)
    4 mint leaves
    1 sprig of mint
    2 oz GOOD White Rum
    2 oz club soda or sparkling water

    10cane-mojitoHere’s where making a cocktail goes from just mixing stuff together to being really fun. You get to muddle things. That’s right, muddle. Put the mint leaves, squeeze over the lime juice and pour the sugar into a taaaaal glass and gently muddle together for a few minutes until everything is nice and…well, muddled. You’ll know. Do it gently; you don’t have to destroy the leaves, or break the glass. Add ice, add the rum and top off with club soda. Stir gently with your most summery swizzle stick. Garnish with a mint sprig and a lime wheel. Umbrella is optional, unless you’re serving at your Tiki Bar, of course.

    Some kats add a little bitters to cut down on the sweetness of this drink, but if you do it right it won’t be all that sweet to begin with. Of course if you’re lazy you can buy “Mojito Mix” and just add the rum, but what fun is that?

    Well kids, that’s the perfect drink for an August day, eh? Aloha!
    -Tiki Chris Pinto reporting from behind the Tiki Bar at Tiki Lounge Talk

  • For The Mad Men Lovers: How To Succeed In Business Without Even Trying, 1967 for Mod Movie Monday

    Posted on July 26th, 2010 "Tiki Chris" Pinto 3 comments

    how_to_succeed-business_posIn honor of Sunday’s Season Four Premier of Mad Men, I thought I’d treat you swingers to a little fun flick from 1967…based on the Broadway musical, here’s

    How to Succeed in Business Without Even Trying

    from 1967 starring a young and crazy Robert Morse as J Pierrepont Finch.

    When I first watched Mad Men four years ago, the one person that really clicked in my head was Cooper. He had a very familiar look, especially his expressions. Through the magic of the modern interwebs I was able to do a world-wide search for this actor’s previous accomplishments (Ok, I went right to IMDB) and realized I had recently seen the kat in How to Succeed in Business!

    Robert Morse in "How To Succeed In Business"

    Robert Morse in "How To Succeed In Business"

    Man, what a great circle of events. Robert Morse originated the part of “Ponty” in HTSIBWET in 1961 and won a Tony for best actor. When the movie came along he, along with Rudy Vallee, Ruth Kobart and Sammy Smith all recreated their roles from the Broadway version. His character starts out as a window washer who, with the help of a book entitled, “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” decides to take a shot at climbing the corporate ladder. Executive is written all over his future, and his goal is to someday run the company.

    Robert Morse in Mad Men

    Robert Morse in Mad Men

    Change the timing by 30 years, and it becomes very easy to see Cooper’s character starting out with some of the same characteristics, basically making his character in How To Succeed a possible background (although a goofy one) for Burt Cooper. (What’s really funny is how the film treats the Advertising Department and its stigma at the company).

    Basically, it’s a very kool connection for the retro series Mad Men to make by hiring an actor who actually portrayed these types of characters at the actual time this series takes place. Dig?how-to-succeed-office1

    As for the movie itself, what a fun flick it is. It’s a musical with some swingin’ tunes. The sets are fantastic…more early-60s style than late. Ultra Modern and swanky-galore. Since it was originally staged in ’61, the movie maintains that era’s look and feel.

    howtosucceed-office-2There are a lot of laughs, and by the end you’ll be hoping the kid makes it. When it’s over, watch a first season Mad Men and you’ll see a few cues from this movie. The kids that put this series together definitely watched this flick once or twice!

    -Tiki Chris reporting from the screening room at World Wide Widgets.
    This is Tiki Lounge Talk, the swingin’ retro tiki blog for kool kats and hip kitties.

  • Mad Men Season Premier tonight on AMC, 10PM EST

    Posted on July 25th, 2010 "Tiki Chris" Pinto 1 comment

    cool-man-coolThe retro crowd is already chilling the Martinis and warming up the puff pastries and Vienna sausages, getting ready for tonight’s 4th season premier of Mad Men. In about an hour from the publishing of this post, millions will tune in to see where Cooper, Sterling, Draper & Price will go. The writers have kooly and smartly completely revamped the situation for the 4th season, with Don’s life turned completely upside down. It should be a hell of a season.

    Since almost all of my retro-mod pals live out of state, it’s impossible to have the swanky cocktail affair I would have liked to have had this evening. I think some thin-lapeled suits and Jackie-O cocktail dresses would have been a nice addition to the evening’s show.

    Anyway, looking forward to the premier as much as you kats and kittens are.

  • We’re in Cocoa Beach!

    Posted on July 24th, 2010 "Tiki Chris" Pinto 2 comments

    cimg2998We made to Cocoa Beach and it’s sunny a hot! The motel we’re staying in has a Tiki bar poolside, so we’re all set! Lots of tikitastic photos and stories to come later or tomorrow.

  • Tropical Storm may squash weekend plans in Cocoa Beach

    Posted on July 23rd, 2010 "Tiki Chris" Pinto No comments

    tiki-bar-talk-logo-colorIf you follow me on Twitter or The Retro Tiki Lounge on Facebook, you’ve probably heard we’ve been planning a trip to the Space Coast, Cocoa Beach for this weekend. It’s been an up-and-down/on-and-off-and-back-on-again krazy kind of plan. We were originally going to swing up to Orlando (with a stop in Cocoa) on a work/trip, but the work part got canceled. We managed to rescue the Cocoa Beach part of the trip, but several events in the last week (flat tire, sudden influx of rescue puppies and kittens, dates moved on paying gigs with the little lady, etc etc) have severely screwed things up.tropical-storm-bonnie

    As of yesterday, we were all set up for a cruise up to Cocao today. Then this goofy Tropical storm, which is all the way down in the Caribbean, decided to fling itself into a big mess of rain clouds and shot some rain all the way up the East Coast of Florida. So as of now, 10:30 am on Friday, here in Fort Lauderdale is a big soggy wreck of a day, and our sources north tell us Cocoa Beach isn’t much different.

    One thing you should know about Florida: The best stuff to do is outdoors. Even the Tiki Bars are all either open-air, on the water (Like Islamorada) or have great tropical gardens (like the Mai Kai). So zipping around in the rain is maximum dullsville.

    welcometococoabeachCocoa Beach is full of kool old ’50s motels and Tiki-ness. It’s like you can’t get drunk and fall over without hitting a Tiki. There are great Tiki Carvers up there, and lots of fun beachy stuff. And the plan was to take lots of pix and post a report on this seaside Tiki lovers’ getaway. But I’m afraid this TS-Bonnie is going to squash the plans on this foray into vintage-meets-neo tiki culture. It’s no fun driving three hours on I-95 in buckets of rain, even in the sleek little Cruiser with the aquatreds, especially if it’s to spend most of the time sitting in the motel room waiting for the rain to stop. So, we’ll see how it plays out today. If Bonnie bows out by tonight, we’ll swing up tomorrow instead of today. If not, this weekend will be a great time to catch up on some writing.

    More to come…

    Later Gators.

    -Tiki Chris, soaking wet and not packed yet, reporting from under the overhang of the lanai at Pirate’s Cove Tiki Bar. Tiki Lounge Talk, The Tiki Culture Blog for Hep Kats and Swingin’ Kittens.