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The term Tiki refers to large wood and stone anthropomorphic figures, which resembled the first man, according to the Polynesian culture. The Tiki phenomenon made its appearance around 1940-1950 with Donn The Beachcomber and Victor Jules Bergeron (also known as Trader Vic). Popular cocktails as the “Zombie” , the “Mai Tai”, the “Scorpion” and the “Fog Cutter” belong to the Tiki cocktail world. Tiki bartenders were so secretive about their recipes and the ingredients, that the Polynesian “fad” rapidly died out. Fortunately, during the last decade, the Tiki phenomenon has begun to take life again thanks to the efforts of many global bartenders.
In his book Sippin’ Safari ,Beach Bum Berry – America’s leading authority on tropical drinks and polynesian pop culture – tells stories about some of the most famous Tiki cocktails. He has also dedicated a whole chapter detailing Zombie’s history and recipe. In fact, this Zombie version looks very similar to the Aku Aku restaurant’s recipe for the Zombie which is described in another Beachbum’s great book, called Remixed. Here is the recipe:


  • 20 ml Diplomatico Anejo Rum
  • 20 ml Appleton V/X (or other aged Jamaican Rum)
  • 20 ml Bacardi 151 overproof rum
  • 20 ml fresh lime juice
  • 20 ml fresh white grapefruit juice
  • 20 ml cinnamon infused sugar syrup
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters
  • 3-4 ml Zombie Mix (equal parts of: triple sec, absinthe, falernum, grenadine)

Add all ingredients in a blender. Add only ½ cup of crushed ice and blend for 5 seconds. Pour the blended mixture into a Tiki mug or a highball glass. Add some more crushed ice to fill the glass. Serve with  straws and garnish with a clean and fresh mint sprig.