This is a great example of a Tiki drink, a class of cocktails that rose to great popularity in the 1940s and 50s. Others in the family include the Mai Tai, Zombie and Singapore Sling.
Trader Vic and Don the Beachcomber were rival bar owners in California after the Second World War. Both established what later came to be know as Tiki Bars, and never quite settled the argument over which one invented the Mai Tai. Tiki Bars were all the rage for the next thirty years, but then fell largely by the wayside other than in holiday resorts and speciality restaurants. Tiki drinks experienced a resurgence in the 1990s, however, and are again popular with a whole new generation of “retro” fans.
To qualify as a Tiki drink, the cocktail usually has to be Rum based. The Singapore Sling is one of very few examples made with Gin. It also has to be served in a distinctive Tiki mug, which is made of ceramic and has some kind of pseudo-Polynesian look about it. The presentation is completely out of control, from flaming volcanoes to plastic toys, animals, and scorpions hidden in a forest of mint leaves.
Underneath all the bar-culture packaging, however, you’ll find that the Missionary’s Downfall is a refreshing cocktail that doesn’t suffer from the syrupy sweetness of many other Tiki drinks. The bite of lime is moderated by an undercurrent of pineapple with a hint of peach. It’s really quite lovely.
Here’s the recipe for a Missionary’s Downfall:
- 60ml White Rum
- 15ml Peach liqueur
- 60ml Pineapple juice
- 45ml Lime juice
- 15ml Sugar syrup
- 12 mint leaves
- Feel free to decorate with a little umbrella (and a sprig of mint)
- Place the mint leaves in the bottom of a cocktail shaker and muddle lightly, just enough to bruise the leaves.
- Fill the shaker with ice.
- Add all remaining ingredients.
- Shake vigorously.
- Strain into a Tiki mug (or highball glass) filled with crushed ice.
- Garnish with a sprig of fresh mint.
- Cocktail shaker
- Tiki mug or Highball glass