Tiki Time Collection: A Brief Guide On Tiki Glasses
Have you ever enjoyed an island-inspired drink served in a Tiki glass?
The bright and bold designs of Tiki glasses are a celebration of adventure, whisking you away to another place and time. They became a popular motif in the late 1950s and were used to serve drinks that were frequently garnished with fruit or decorative paper drink umbrellas.
Today, with more escapists looking for their own immediate fun, the popularity of Tiki is once again on the rise. We designed our Tiki Time glasses with Polynesian patterns that are reminiscent of Mid Century designs and remind us of our own island getaways.
The American history of Tiki is a fun and fascinating one. Tiki began as a small community experiment of like-minded connoisseurs who had a sense of adventure and were looking to create a drink akin to a vacation in a glass.
Since its inception, Tiki has become a lifestyle that pulls from 20th century cocktail recipes and is served in some of the most lavish hotel bars and drinking establishments in the world, including the Lost Lake, Hale Pale and Smuggler’s Cove.
If you are looking to be whisked to a warmer place without traveling (like so many of us are these days), we suggest you drink a Tiki cocktail out of one of our tropical themed Tiki Time glasses. You’ll feel like you are on vacation without ever leaving home!
Where do Tiki glasses originate?
The origin story behind Tiki glasses and our own Tiki glassware patterns begins with Polynesia. Polynesian mythology held that Tiki was the first man created and that, much like Adam in Christianity, Tiki was looking for companionship.
The myth continues that Tiki was lonely and, as an expert carpenter, he would carve versions of his female companion. For centuries, throughout the Pacific Islands, Polynesians built statues in honor of Tiki. These statues were made of stone, clay or wood and showed disproportionately large faces with a variety of extreme expressions set atop small bodies. The Polynesians believed that their Tiki idols would protect them from misfortune, thereby giving them strength.
Tiki culture and art became popular in the U.S. during the 1930s and Tiki symbols were found prevalently on the islands of Hawaii. Following Prohibition, tropical restaurants and Tiki bars started to emerge and soon were found worldwide.
In 1934, Ernest Raymond Beaumont-Gantt, more commonly known as Donn the Beachcomber and the father of Tiki culture, opened a Tiki restaurant in Hollywood, California and began serving exotic drinks. The restaurant was highly popular with movie stars and locals alike and gained worldwide recognition.
At his restaurant, Donn invented and inspired several famous Tiki drinks, including the Mai Tai and the Zombie, which he served in a variety of glassware shapes and sizes. Trader Vic’s, founded in San Francisco in the late 1930s by Victor Bergeron, was Donn’s major competitor and the two are credited with expanding the interest in Tiki following WWII (which continued until its decline in the 1970s).
Glassware Drawing from Trader Vic’s Bartender’s Guide, 1947
What drinks are served in Tiki glasses?
While Tiki drinks are made with a variety of spirits and fresh juices, the most common ones include rum as the major component. We’ve got several favorites that we think your guests will certainly enjoy.
We also know that, as your guests sip on these delicious cocktails, they’ll love learning about the stories behind our Polynesian-inspired Tiki Time patterns!
3 Classic Tiki cocktail recipes to serve in Tiki glasses
Ready to make your own Tiki cocktails at home? Here are 3 classic and refreshing Tiki cocktail recipes that will instantly take your worries away and transport you to island paradise in our Tiki glassware.
Named after the Tahitian word for “excellence”, the Mai Tai is so much more than just a sweet drink. It transports you from one sip straight to the paradise of the Hawaiian islands.
- ¾ oz freshly squeezed lime juice
- ½ oz orgeat
- ½ dark rum
- 1 ½ ozwhite rum
- ¾ oz orange curaçao
- Garnish: lime wedge, mint sprig
- Combine white rum, lime juice, curaçao, and orgeat into a shaker with crushed ice and shake lightly for about 3 seconds.
- Pour into a Tiki Time glass.
- Float the dark rum over the top.
- Garnish with a lime wedge and mint sprig.
- Serve and enjoy!
Nothing is as refreshing as a Classic Mojito, especially on a hot summer’s day! This Tiki cocktail can be traced back to the 16th century, but its modern version was made famous in Cuba and Havana hotels and cocktail lounges.
The Mojito was one of Ernest Hemmingway’s favorite cocktails, which he drank in abundance when he frequented Sloppy Joe’s (the original) in Key West and La Bodeguita del medio in Cuba.
- 2 oz lime juice
- 1 teaspoon powdered sugar
- 2 oz of white rum (10 cane rum recommended)
- 2 oz club soda
- 4 mint leaves
- Garnish: 1 sprig of mint, 1 wedge of lime
- Mix the mint leaves, lime juice and sugar gently in a tall glass for a few minutes.
- Add ice and white rum, then top off with club soda.
- Stir gently with your most summery swizzle stick.
- Garnish with a mint sprig and a lime wheel.
- Serve in our Tiki Time glass and enjoy!
Navy Grog (Donn Beach’s Version)
Based on Donn Beach’s version from 1941, this Navy Grog recipe uses honey as a natural sweetener and has a classic Tiki drink flavor profile.
With a mix of ingredients that are pretty easy to procure, such as rum, citrus and soda, this Navy Grog recipe is a very good beginner Tiki cocktail to make. The preparation is also pretty easy.
- 1 oz Light Rum
- 1 oz Dark Jamaican Rum (Appleton Estate Signature)
- 1 oz Demerara Rum (El Dorado 3)
- 1 oz Honey Mix
- 3/4 oz Fresh Lime Juice
- 3/4 oz Fresh Grapefruit Juice
- 3/4 oz Club Soda (Topo Chico works well)
- Garnish: 1 mint sprig & 1 lime wedge
- 1 Ice Cone (alternatively, use big cubes)
- To make the honey mix, heat up equal parts water and honey in a pan. Stir until they seem well-incorporated, but make sure to stop before the mixture boils. Important: Do not skip this step, otherwise the honey won’t mix properly if it’s not blended with the water first.
- If using an ice cone, put a straw through the middle and place in a rocks glass. Otherwise, add LARGE ice cubes.
- Add the rum, honey mix, lime juice, grapefruit juice, and club soda to a shaker, and fill with crushed ice. Shake for about 15 seconds or flash blend using a drink mixer, then strain into our Dots and Dashes White Rocks glass.
- Garnish with a mint sprig and lime wedge.
- Serve and enjoy!