Do you own a snow cone machine? No? You might want to reconsider that. I’m generally not a fan of single-use gadgets, but this one might be worth an exception, especially if you’ve got kids because, come on. There’s really no other way to get the fluffy crushed ice you need for a real snow cone. But they don’t just have to be for the kids – they’re pretty fun for grown-ups, too. So pick one up and rock out an adult snow cone featuring the Zombie, a classic Tiki drink, before summer vanishes. – Andrew
Zombie Snow Cone
1 1/2 oz Golden Rum
1 1/2 oz Dark Jamaican Rum
1 oz Overproof Rum
3/4 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Falernum
1/2 oz Don’s Mix
1 tsp Grenadine
6 drops Absinthe
To make the Don’s Mix, first mix up a batch of cinnamon syrup. Make a simple syrup by melting a cup of sugar in a cup of water over low heat, then add in 2-3 cinnamon sticks, broken up into small pieces. Simmer for ten minutes, then let the syrup sit off the heat, covered, for another twenty minutes. Strain out the cinnamon sticks and bottle the syrup. To turn this into Don’s Mix, just add two parts grapefruit juice to one part of the syrup.
To make the snow cone, combine all your ingredients in an easy-to-pour container. Using your snow cone machine – or, in a pinch, a blender that can really pulverize ice – crush or shave your ice to fill up a cup. Drizzle your Zombie mix over the ice and serve with a spoon and a straw. Enjoy!
The Zombie is one of the very first classic Tiki drinks, dating back to 1934 when it was invented by Don the Beachcomber. It’s an intensely flavorful drink with lots of components bouncing off each other in really interesting ways. But it also packs a wallop. Just look at all that rum! Don himself had a rule of serving no more than two of these to any guest at his restaurant.
Here’s something fun about the Zombie: Don kept his recipes close-hold, so that competing restaurants wouldn’t steal his drinks. This mean that his recipes were often written in code and that even his bartenders didn’t really know everything that went into a Zombie. The recipe was lost for years, but Jeff “Beachbum” Berry, a Tiki aficionado, managed to piece together the original in 2005 after years of searching. The last piece was, of course, the Don’s Mix, a cryptic reference that only now makes sense again.
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Glassware by Liquorary
Photo Credits: Nole Garey for Oh So Beautiful Paper