Tag Archives: ginger syrup

thurston howl rum tiki drink feature

Thurston Howl

Nothing says “tiki” like a drink served in a tiki mug with an extravagant garnish. I always like to incorporate one drink served in a tiki mug into my tiki party cocktail rotation. This is your chance to go all out on the garnish—the more the better as far as I’m concerned! Because the drink is served with a straw, you can really load it up and not worry about pineapple chunks plopping out when your guest takes a sip.

The Thurston Howl is a wonderful concoction ripped from the pages of Imbibe magazine (May/June-2009). It makes wonderful use of Tangueray’s Rangpur gin—which is heavy on the lime—and pairs well with the Appleton rum and the Paul Masson brandy. This is a delightful concoction to sip on a warm summer day. Plus, the name always brings a smile to people’s faces.

Thurston Howl
1 oz Appleton Estate V/X rum
1/2 oz Paul Masson Grande Amber VSOP brandy
1/2 oz Tangueray Rangpur gin
2 oz pineapple juice
1/4 oz grapefruit juice
2 oz papaya nectar
1/4 oz Trader Tiki’s cinnamon syrup
1/2 oz ginger syrup

Fill a shaker full of ice. Add the rum, brandy, gin, juices, nectar and syrups. Cap the shaker and shake vigorously for 15-20 seconds. Pour into a tiki mug. Garnish with pineapple, cherries, cinnamon stick and a hibiscus flower.

Making garnishes should be fun—so take your time. You can pre-make your garnishes right before your party so that you don’t feel rushed when your making drinks. Be careful when using flowers as garnishes because you don’t want to use flowers with pesticides on them. I like to grow my own flowers for garnishes since I know that they’re not treated with anything.

thurston howl rum tiki drink Thurston Howl

how to make syrups feature

Homemade Syrups

The easiest way to make drinks sweet is to add sugar syrup. Syrups are easy to make and keep well in the fridge for a couple of weeks in a tight fitting container. You can also make flavored syrups to give your cocktail an extra dimension.

Simple Syrup

If you’re wondering what simple syrup is then you’ve come to the right place. Simple syrup is a common ingredient for certain cocktails that require a little sweetness. The best simple syrup is to make your own—if you buy it you’re likely to get a bunch of preservatives and other things in it you don’t need. And, it’s cheaper to make your own anyway. Here are a few ways to make simple syrup.

Rich Simple Syrup
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup distilled water

Place sugar and water in a small saucepan and stir until dissolved. Bring to a gentle boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer until syrup is slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Transfer syrup to a container with a tight-fitting lid, cover, refrigerate and use as needed.

Quick Simple Syrup
1 cup baker’s sugar
1 cup distilled water

Combine sugar and water in a bottle with a tight fitting lid, and shake it until dissolved. It will be cloudy for a bit, but will eventually clear up. Cover and store in the fridge until needed. This method comes in handy if you run out in the middle of making drinks, or if you’re kinda lazy like me.

Whatever method you choose, you can also substitute Splenda Granulated Sweetner for sugar if you want a sugar free alternative. I use this when I make a drink for my Dad who is diabetic. You can also make flavored syrups, but I will update this post when I include recipes that call for those.

Demerara Syrup

Demerara syrup is called for in some tropical drinks. You just follow the recipe for Rich Simple Syrup, but use demerara sugar instead of granulated sugar. Demerara is a natural brown sugar found at many specialty food stores.

Demerara Simple Syrup
2 cups demerara sugar
1 cup distilled water

Place sugar and water in a small saucepan and stir until dissolved. Bring to a gentle boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer until syrup is slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Transfer syrup to a container with a tight-fitting lid, cover, refrigerate and use as needed.

Honey Syrup

If you’ve ever tried to make cocktails using honey, you’ll quickly find that it’s difficult to work with in the shaker. It’s messy and often freezes after you’ve given the tin a few good shakes. I prefer to use honey syrup. You get the flavor of the honey but is easier to use and mixes up better.

Honey Syrup
1 cup honey
1 cup distilled water

Place honey and water in a small saucepan and stir until dissolved. Bring to a gentle boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer until syrup is slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Transfer syrup to a container with a tight-fitting lid, cover, refrigerate and use as needed.

Ginger Syrup

Are you seeing the syrup pattern yet? Yep, just sugar and water boiled together. You can add other ingredients to give your syrup a special flavor. Here’s a good and quick recipe for ginger syrup.

Ginger Syrup
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup distilled water
6 equal-sized pieces of fresh, peeled ginger

Place sugar and water in a small saucepan and stir until dissolved. Add ginger and bring to a gentle boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer until syrup is slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Transfer syrup to a container with a tight-fitting lid, cover, refrigerate and use as needed.

One thing to keep in mind about ginger syrup—it loses its flavor fairly quickly. Make it in small batches and keep for up to one week.