Tiki drinks are often seen lugging a heavy reputation as patronizing, faux-Pacific salads. They're high in sugar, weak in spirit and served with garish fruit-kebabs. They suggest alcohol is something no to be celebrated, but tolerated with heady juices. But just because tiki drinks are bad, that doesn’t mean tiki ingredients are bad too.
Few fruits are as ‘tiki’ as the pineapple: it’s bright yellow, sickeningly sweet and the pineapple butchering is a lovely bit of theater. They scream ‘Hawaii,’ and aren’t even indigenous to the Polynesians! But pineapples are delicious, and just like anything else they can be balanced.
It’s easy to make fresh pineapple juice at home; in lieu of a juicer, just blend and press the pulp through a strainer. A cleaner way to introduce pineapple to a drink is a classic pineapple syrup. Either method gives a lovely new shell in your arsenal for some gorgeous drinks. It’s especially useful from a diet perspective, as some people are intolerant of citric acid. Pineapple is a great substitute for lemon or orange — just try the drink first, and adjust from there.
Pineapple — 1 (skinned and cubed)
Simple syrup — 2 cups
Combine ingredients and let soak in the fridge for 4-24 hours, until liquid is straw-yellow. Press and strain out the fruit, bottle, and refrigerate. Lasts 1 week.