My Blue Heaven

I learned a new drink yesterday: the Blue Hawaii.

This is not to be confused with the Blue Hawaiian, which is a slightly different drink that incorporates cream of coconut.


The Blue Hawaii cocktail was born at Honolulu’s Kaiser Hawaiian Village (now Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Resort). In 1957, a sales representative of Dutch distiller Bols asked legendary bartender Harry Yee to design a drink that featured its blue curaçao, a Caribbean liqueur made using the dried peel of the Laraha citrus fruit.

After experimenting with several variations, Yee settled on a cocktail featuring rum, vodka, blue curaçao, pineapple and sweet-and-sour. The drink is still recognized today for its signature blue color, pineapple wedge and cocktail umbrella garnish.

Now, I modified it a bit: I don’t really like vodka (except for a brand called Deep Eddy, a Texas-made line of flavored vodkas that are quite lovely), and I don’t even think I have any on hand, so I just doubled the rum. Everything else, though, I made to spec, and the result was the frothy and fruity and flavorful beverage you see above.

I’m getting better at this and I’m enlarging my repertoire! I will eventually try the Blue Hawaiian, but I doubt The Wife will join me, as she dislikes coconut, for some reason nobody can fathom.

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