Sippin’ Safari – A Book Advertisement

Sippin' Safari

I arrived home to find an Amazon box nestled lovingly up against my garage door, like it had found its true home. What occurred next was me moving faster than I have in probably two years. I grabbed a knife at random from the block and tore into the box with fevered intensity. I felt chills on my neck as I delicately extracted Sippin’ Safari from the wrapping. I could have sworn it was glowing.

I picked up the glossy-covered tome and rifled through at an alarming speed. An explosion of tiki culture flashed before my eyes and I nearly dropped it. Unlike Berry’s previous tomes, Sippin Safari is filled to the brim with tiki relics, bars and drinks all in full, and in most cases, aged color. Some may spend the time to find the perfect “first” recipe to try. I took quite the opposite approach and now sit at my table sipping a Tiger Shark (see recipe below), shoes still on, laptop nearly falling off of the table and gushing after having owned the book for 4 minutes.

I was originally going to title the article “A Book Review,” but then I realized that wasn’t fair. I mean, how could I not give a perfect review to a book who’s first chapter is titled, “The Master Ninja?” Plus, this book could have pretty much contain a solitary recipe and a stupid drawing of a hut and I’d still be gaga over it. Luckily for everyone, however, inside lies:

The Glorious Contents

  • 183 pages of tiki history and culture. You know when you were a little kid and you got enough presents for Christmas that it was too hard to decide where to start? Yeah, like that.
  • 70 new tiki drinks, 48 of which Berry claims have never seen print
  • An endless supply of drink and historic photography

Flipping once again through the pages, I’m seeing words like “Lemon Hart,” “pimento liqueur,” “honey mix,” and many that are even more enticing. At short glance it appears as if the methodology behind the drinks has become consistent as Berry continues to formulate the best methods for mixing exotic cocktails. For example, directions like “add the ice last” and “blend on high speed for no more than 5 seconds” seem to have replaced the mysterious blending time frames from the past two books. I plan to get to the bottom of this sometime soon.

Needless to say, but I’ve moved onto the Beachcomber’s Rum Barrel (see recipe below) while writing. And even though my refrigerator has yet to see the wonder of pimento dram, the drink is absolutely phenomenal without it.

I must stop pronouncing the wondrous glories of Sippin’ Safari and spend some more time “reading” the knowledge within. I am sure you’ll be bombarded with post after post born straight from this book, so I bid you farewell.

Tiger Shark

  • 1/2oz lime juice
  • 1/2oz pineapple juice
  • 1/2oz simple syrup
  • 1/2oz gold Puerto Rican rum (I used Bacardi Eight)
  • 1/2oz light Puerto Rican rum (I used Brugal)
  • 1/2oz 151-proof Demerara rum (I used Lemon Hart)
  • 4oz crushed ice

Put everything in a blender, saving ice for last. Blend at high speed for no more than 5 seconds. Strain into a fluted glass.

Source: Sippin’ Safari, Jeff Berry

Beachcomber’s Rum Barrel

  • 1oz lime juice
  • 1oz orange juice
  • 1oz grapefruit juice
  • 1oz pineapple juice
  • 1oz honey mix (1 part good honey, 1 part water, heated to dissolve)
  • 1oz light Puerto Rican rum (I used Brugal)
  • 1oz gold Jamaican rum (I used Appleton V/X)
  • 2oz Demerara rum (I used Lemon Hart)
  • 1tsp Fee’s Falernum (I used a touch more of homemade)
  • 1tsp Pimento Liqueur (Make it without if you don’t have it)
  • 1/8t Pernod
  • 1/8t grenadine (I used a touch more of homemade)
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters
  • 8oz crushed ice

Put everything in a blender, saving ice for last. Blend at high speed for no more than 5 seconds. Pour into a ceramic rum barrel (who doesn’t have one of these?). Add ice cubes to fill.

Source: Sippin’ Safari, Jeff Berry

Need Something to Discuss?

Sippin’ Safari eschewed its predecessors’ spiral bindings and upgraded to glossy paper. Though I love the color, I wonder if I’ll miss staining its pages as I have done with Intoxica! and Grog Log. The binding seems easy enough to break in, but I’m still not sure … which do you prefer?

17 Responses to “Sippin’ Safari – A Book Advertisement”

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17 Comments to “ Sippin’ Safari – A Book Advertisement”
  1. MarleighNo Gravatar says:

    I had the same reaction, except I was tearing mine open while trying to navigate the three flights of stairs to my apartment. I nearly met my fate wrestling my copy out of the packaging.

  2. AdamNo Gravatar says:

    Rick called me twice at work and three more times on my commute home to rant about this book. He was justified to do so! We hope you, loyal readers, will understand that our regularly scheduled programming (read: Singapore Sling recipe comparison) will have to wait until we’ve gone through this book.

  3. JimmyNo Gravatar says:

    This book sounds awesome. I can’t wait until I have one all to myself.

  4. JimmyNo Gravatar says:

    I think I’ll have one tomorrow! SLG publishing is not too far from my office! Yippee

  5. MrBaliHaiNo Gravatar says:

    The chapter on the history of the Zombie is a fascinating bit of mixology detective work.

  6. ScottesNo Gravatar says:

    What a fantastic book! I’m too involved in the histories to begin making any of the drinks. Yet. Highly recommended reading – and mixing I’m sure.

  7. RickNo Gravatar says:

    Too involved in the history to begin making drinks?! Blasphemy!

  8. ScottesNo Gravatar says:

    Blasphemous maybe, but only for now. I’ve been trying to determine *why* the old Tiki creators used the rums the did, so I’ve been attempting to dig up some details. So far, the best answer that I’ve found is “that’s what they had available” which is a boring answer, so I’ll keep digging.

    And if I don’t find an answer to that question, I’ll keep digging into what makes those rums different. For instance, I recently found that Bacardi Superior is closer to Havana Club Anejo Blanco than any other white I have, so why do the Tiki creators always call for Puerto Rican rums? So I’m looking for some other Puerto Rican whites to compare to Bacardi…

    And what about the golds? What is it that’s makes Puerto Rican gold different from Barbados Gold or a Jamaican? What makes a demerara so distinct? What dark rum is better than Myer’s? And what rum or rums makes for a perfect Mai Tai and why?

    And then Sippin’ Safari makes mention of the Louisiana rum Pontalba… Why did Don use that? And how do I get more information about it??

    Blasphemy? Nah, it’s all about the rum.

  9. RickNo Gravatar says:


    Your quest is noble and one that every true tiki cocktailian should take. I can’t answer all of your questions quickly, so I’ll pick one or two.

    Gosling’s Black Seal is better than Myer’s, though they are both very different.

    My favorite “Puerto Rican” light rum comes from Barbados! Brugal white.

  10. MarleighNo Gravatar says:

    I recently noticed that Trader Vic had a “white Puerto Rican” rum obsession. It’s in everything. Thanks for the tip on Brugal, Rick!

    As for dark Jamaican, I use Coruba.

  11. RickNo Gravatar says:

    I’ve never heard of Coruba, nor do I see it on the PLCB list. How does it compare with Gosling’s and Myer’s?

  12. ScottesNo Gravatar says:

    Many of the tiki-ites at Tiki Central prefer Coruba for their dark. Here’s a great thread from there talking about dark rums, and Coruba comes out on top from a number of folks.

    I wish that I could find it in Massachusetts. I’m not a fan of the cloying, fake flavor of Myer’s – though some drinks seem to demand that particular taste.

  13. MarleighNo Gravatar says:


    Speaking from memory (it’s been a while since I’ve mixed a drink with anything but Coruba), it’s lighter of body but still has good flavor. Myer’s always seemed too syrupy to me, but the Coruba works nicely and doesn’t feel like molasses. It’s pretty easy to find here even though BevMo doesn’t carry it anymore. Here’s a link to the shop where I generally pick up my spirits—their list price for it is $23.


  14. AdamNo Gravatar says:


    Thanks for the tip on Mission Liquor–I’ll have to plan a trip there soon! (There seem to be a few things there I haven’t seen at BevMo, Ledger’s, or John Walker). Anything else you recommend in the way of rums?

  15. MarleighNo Gravatar says:

    I can’t (and won’t) claim to be an expert on the subject), but my staple rums tend to be Cruzan light, Mt. Gay Eclipse and Coruba. I have about eighteen bajillion other bottles at various times, but those three are pretty much constantly hanging around. I can’t remember which book it’s in (I want to say Intoxica!), but the Bum does a great rundown of what rums are good bets, and he has a list up on his site!

  16. RickNo Gravatar says:

    Yes, the Bum’s list of recommended rums is quite useful. I am so pleased to see how he has upped the ante on his syrup recommendations and even provided some recipes in Sippin’ Safari.

  17. TelescopesNo Gravatar says:

    Dig deep into Sippin Safari, looking well beyond the obvious finds of drinks like the Zombie and the Mai Tai, and what you find are the drinks that define a methodology that is in itself the essence of tropical drink at ground zero. For instance, Don the Beachcomber’s Holy Trinity of Falernum, Pernod, and bitters is a pattern that repeats itself many times over. Just as the Trader’s Trinity of Curacoa, simple syrup, and orgeat is a repetition that thunders through his catalog, Don and the other boys have a certain essence that permeates their drinks as well. Sippin Safari peals these flavors back and reinforces the obvious with the backstories of the men who made them. In the end, you understand why a Pina Colada or a Margarita are light years a part from a drink like the Tiger Shark or my new favorite, the Pearl Diver.

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Kaiser Penguin is a cocktail blog featuring original recipes, homemade ingredients, classic cocktails, and tiki drinks.

Why on Earth did you name your blog “Kaiser Penguin?”

It is a well-known fact that penguins are members of high society and enjoy fine cocktails. Our very own kaiser penguin would like me to mention that he also enjoys various treats from the sea.

Contact: rick@kaiserpenguin.com