Odd name, yes. But this Tiki drink offers great summertime flavor
Tiki drinks often sport unusual names – and this one may be one of the strangest. But don’t let that put you off.
The Vicious Virgin is slightly sweet, and definitely spicy. It makes a smooth sipper on a hot August afternoon. And it even works as a pre-dinner cocktail.
So serve this charmer at your next dinner party. The name alone will be a conversation starter.
Recipe: The Vicious Virgin Cocktail
This drink combines 2 kinds of rum, plus Cointreau, falernum (a spicy sweet syrup—see Notes), and fresh lime juice. The flavor reminds us of a cross between a Mai Tai and a Daiquiri.
We like to serve this drink in a rocks (Old-Fashioned) glass, over ice. But some people favor other presentations – including champagne flutes (see Notes).
This recipe serves 1, and takes about 5 minutes to prepare.
- 1 ounce light rum (see Notes for suggestions)
- ½ ounce dark rum (see Notes for suggestions)
- ½ ounce Cointreau
- ¾ ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
- ½ ounce falernum (or to taste; see Notes)
- garnish of a lime wedge and/or a maraschino cherry (optional; we vote for lime)
- Combine all ingredients (except garnish) in a cocktail shaker half-filled with ice. Shake well until the contents are well chilled – about 20 seconds.
- Strain the mixture into a rocks (Old-Fashioned) glass filled with ice cubes or crushed ice. Garnish, if you wish, and serve.
- This is a Tiki drink. So feel free to garnish it with an umbrella.
- Some people shake this drink with crushed ice, then pour the unstrained contents into an empty rocks glass.
- Others whiz the drink in a blender with a handful of crushed ice, then pour the mixture into a champagne flute.
- This cocktail requires falernum, which is a thick, sweet syrup with a spicy flavor. Falernum is a fairly common ingredient in Tiki (and other tropical) drinks. Depending on the brand, it may contain ginger, lime, cloves, allspice, and/or almond.
- We prefer the Fee Brothers brand of falernum, but there are other good ones available.
- It’s best to shake falernum before using it (some of its ingredients may separate slightly). And after opening, store it in the refrigerator.
- Depending on how spicy your brand of falernum is, you may want to use less than we specify. If unsure, start with ¼ ounce.
- Many liquor stores carry falernum, and it’s available online. But if you don’t want to go to the trouble of finding it, you can substitute simple syrup. You’ll miss falernum’s spiciness, but the substitute will add the proper note of sweetness.
- Originally, this drink was made with a light Virgin Islands rum and a dark Puerto Rican rum.
- Cruzan is probably the best-known brand of Virgin Islands light rum, and we recommend it. However, the flavor of most light rums isn’t all that assertive, so you can probably substitute any decent brand.
- BTW, even though this drink originally featured Virgin Islands rum, we doubt that’s how it got its name.
- We haven’t found a Puerto Rican dark rum that we like (though admittedly, we haven’t tried that many). So we suggest using either Myers’s (Jamaican) or Gosling’s (Bermuda) dark rum. We’ve tried both in this drink, and they work well.
- We’ve mentioned several brand names in this post. Our usual disclaimer: We’re completely noncommercial and we don’t get compensated for mentioning brands. We buy our own booze, and recommend only what we buy and like.
- There’s another version of this drink called The Vicious Virgin #2. If you’d like to make one, here’s the recipe: Add ¾ ounce light rum, ¾ ounce tequila, ¼ ounce Blue Curaçao, 1½ ounces grapefruit juice, ¾ ounce fresh lime juice, and ½ ounce orgeat syrup to a cocktail shaker half-filled with ice. Shake, then strain into a cocktail glass.
- Both versions of The Vicious Virgin were created by Donn Beach, who ran a chain of restaurants called Don the Beachcomber. Beach was responsible for creating and popularizing many Tiki drinks. In fact, he probably got the whole Tiki craze going. If you want to know more about Tiki drinks, Beachbum Berry is the man.
Remembering Our First Time
“Ah, falernum,” said Mrs Kitchen Riffs. “Recall the first time we had it?”
“Yup, we used it in the Planter’s Punch,” I said. “Though we were no cocktail virgins, even then.”
“And later we used it in the Zombie,” said Mrs K R. “Which is not a drink for the uninitiated.”
“Indeed not,” I said. “Though we then used falernum in the Bermuda Rum Swizzle, which is more suitable for the beginner.”
“And the last time we used it was in the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Cocktail,” said Mrs K R.
“That was three years ago,” I said. “Time flies when you’re drinking Tiki.”
“And now we’ve circled back to falernum again for this cocktail,” said Mrs K R.
“So does that qualify as a vicious circle?” I asked.
“That comment is virgin on the ridiculous,” said Mrs K R.
You may also enjoy reading about:
Bermuda Rum Swizzle
Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Cocktail
Suffering Bastard Cocktail
Or check out the index for more