By Maren Swanson
I have a thriving hibiscus plant in my courtyard and it blooms the most beautiful bright fuchsia flowers. It seems out of place amongst the typical roses and bougainvillea found in my neighborhood, but I don’t mind it – I love it. I’ve never been to Hawaii, but recently discovered that the yellow hibiscus is the state flower of Hawaii, and even though my blossoms may not be the right color, every time I snip one and bring it in, I start to imagine what it would be like to be swaying in an island hammock and sipping on the perfect Hawaiian cocktail. Good thing my husband and I recently booked our Honeymoon to Hawaii…
I was determined to make my tropical dream drink come to life. Oh, and I have to mention that Hawaii is very well-known for their poke (a raw fish dish served as an appetizer), so I decided to add some citrus elements to this cocktail to tie it in with a typical Hawaiian poke recipe. A match made in Hawaiian honeymoon heaven!
You can serve this drink straight up, but I prefer it on the rocks. You may be thinking, “Vanilla extract???” Trust me, the addition of vanilla rounds the drink out and adds another level of layered flavor. Instead of using straight sugar, I opted for honey, and it just worked with the name – Hawaiian Honeymoon. If you happen to have a cocktail umbrella lying around, you might as well throw that in too! I choose to top this cocktail off with lavender and fresh mint because I wanted all of my senses to perk up for this drink – including the flavors. Take a whiff of the lively garnishes, and then dive mouth first into this tequila-based drink – you won’t be disappointed.
Hawaiian Honeymoon Cocktail
1 ½ oz blanco or silver tequila (I used Camarena)
1 oz pineapple Juice
¾ oz fresh squeezed orange juice
¾ oz fresh squeezed lime juice
¼ oz honey
¼ oz vanilla extract
splash grenadine (optional – turns it a lovely pink color!)
Layer ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Secure shaker top and shake until tin turns frosty cold. Strain cocktail into a glass with fresh ice and garnish with fresh mint and lavender or perhaps a pineapple wedge and umbrella! Enjoy.