Tropical Storm

The Tropical Storm is a light green drink, served with ice in a short glass, and garnished with a dried banana.

History

This cocktail has some historical significance, folks, since it riffs on some Hurricanes that my cousin Brian made about 10 years ago on Cape Cod during a family reunion.

As sometimes happens in the summer, we were visited not only by family from California, Chicago and New York, but also by an actual hurricane. Hurricane Earl shut everything down and kept us sheltering in place, but Brian (thank god for Brian!) had the wherewithal to stock up on all the necessary ingredients beforehand. He makes a mean Hurricane, too!

I can’t forget the way the song “Duke of Earl” kept spontaneously breaking out…just when you thought everyone got it out of their systems, it would start up again.

Earl vs. Henri

But enough historical context! Over this present-day weekend, a hurricane was supposed to actually make landfall on New England (as opposed to rolling up the Atlantic, with the outer reaches causing the storm’s effects, which is what usually happens), and I was thinking of my friends and family there. Luckily, Hurricane Henri behaved unexpectedly, by slowing down and getting downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm, and finally a tropical depression as it hit Rhode Island, Connecticut and Massachusetts. The Cape wasn’t in the hurricane path after all, though my friends in Worcester experienced three different tornadoes as a side effect!

In talking about that reunion with some of my family today, I thought I’d make a hurricane-inspired drink. Brian reminded me that passionfruit and bitters were in Hurricanes and I remembered that we were gifted some Passionfruit Coconut “jam” (well, I’d thought it was a jam, but it turned out to be syrup – even better for our purposes). We’ve been wanting and waiting to use it, along with some excellent dried organic banana that we had designs on using for an exotic garnish. Both were brought to us from Hawaii by friends who went to visit the folks who grew, harvested and dried the actual bananas!

The syrup turned out to contain real shreds of coconut! That was an unexpected treat. There was a slightly bitter taste to the drink, so I added some simple syrup that we had on hand.

It was good! Elizabeth and I toasted Brian and the family, and hurricanes, and friends and family in New England.

Ingredients

  • White rum, 4 oz

  • 1 1/4 oz. Passionfruit Coconut Syrup

  • 8 -10 drops Japanese Chili Lime bitters

  • 2 oz lime juice

  • 2 – 3 oz simple syrup

  • Garnish – dried Hawaiian banana

Directions

  • Simple Syrup
  • Boil 1/2 c. water and 1/4 c. sugar and 1/4 monkfruit for enough time to dissolve the crystals. In truth, I usually use a little less than 1/2 c. of the sugar/monkfruit blend without losing any sweetness. Make sure the proportion of sugar is greater than the proportion of monkfruit, or it will crystallize. Cool the mixture. As long as you haven’t used too much monkfruit, you can save any leftovers.
  • Combine all ingredients (except banana) in a shaker with ice. Shake until satisfied.
  • Pour over ice and garnish with banana.
  • Toast weather anomalies and family.
Enjoyed on August 22, 2021

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