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Do you know the recipe for an authentic Hawaiian Mai Tai?

Ask the Big Kahuna

“Answering the most common visitor questions”


While in Hawaii my wife and I enjoyed this drink called Mai Tai. Back here on the mainland we have Mai Tai but they don’t taste like what we had there. Could I possibly get the recipe from you?

Thanks in advance.



Dear T –

There does seem to be something about a Mai Tai that goes perfectly with a tropical sunset. Recipes seem to be as numerous as hibiscus, though. Here are a few. For those who don’t drink alcoholic beverages, try them without the rum.

Mai Tai #1

1 oz. Royal Hawaiian Light Rum, or any light rum.
1 oz. Demerara Rum (Lemon Hart 86)
1 oz. Orange Curacao (Bols)
Dash French Orgeat Syrup
Dash Rock Candy Syrup
Juice of half a Lime
1/4 oz. Lemon Juice
Orange Juice

Fill large (14 ounce) glass with ingredients, then add crushed ice and orange juice. Garnish with mint leaves and perhaps fruit on a skewer.

Mai Tai #2

2 ounces dark rum
1/2 ounce curaçao
1/2 ounce apricot brandy
1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
3 or 4 ice cubes
Pineapple spear

Combine all ingredients, except the pineapple, in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with the pineapple. Serves 1.

Mai Tai #3

2 jiggers (3 ounces) light rum
1 jigger (1 1/2 ounces) dark rum
1 pony (1 ounce) Grand Marnier
1 pony (1 ounce) amaretto
2 ponies (2 ounces) pineapple juice
1 pony (1 ounce) fresh lemon juice

Garnish: pineapple spears and lemon slices
In a cocktail shaker half-filled with ice cubes, combine rums, Grand Marnier, amaretto, pineapple juice and the lemon juice. Shake the drink for 30 seconds, and strain it into 2 long-stemmed glasses filled with ice cubes. Garnish the drinks with pineapple spears and lemon slices. Serves 2.

For more great Hawaii recipes, check out the “Taste of Hawaii” Recipes

Big Kahuna