The Local Palate Newsletter
Sign up to recieve news, updates, recipes, cocktails and web exclusives about food culture in the south

Share this article via email


Save 72% off of newsstand price now!

Subscribe to The Local Palate
Shop Marketplace Savor the South Newsletter Tableaux Newsletter Subscribe Digital Edition Customer Service Send a Gift Shop the South Marketplace Newsletter App Store Google Play

Get the latest from the Local Palate, straight to your inbox.

Sign up

Get the latest from the Local Palate, straight to your inbox.

Julio Cabrera’s La Trova Mai Tai


For the Banana-Coffee Orgeat

2 cups blanched almonds

1½ cups sugar

½ ripe banana

5 coffee beans

2 ounces banana liqueur

½ teaspoon orange flower water (or substitute orange zest or 3 dashes orange bitters)

For the La Trova Mai Tai

1 ounce light rum

1 ounce dark Jamaican rum (Julio Cabrera uses Appleton Reserve)

½ ounce banana-coffee orgeat

½ ounce orange curaçao

¾ ounce fresh squeezed lime juice

Have fun with
 your garnishes: mint, edible flowers, plantain chips, citrus wheels—the possibilities are endless.


  1. Make the orgeat: In a blender, combine almonds, sugar, banana, and coffee beans with 1¼ cups water and blend
for 30 seconds. Transfer liquid to a pot and bring to a boil, then simmer for 5 minutes. Let cool, then strain through a cheesecloth, discarding solids. Stir in banana liqueur and orange flower water. Store orgeat in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
  2. Make the mai tai: In a cocktail tin filled with ice, combine all ingredients and shake. Strain into a 10-ounce glass filled with crushed ice.

From A Cuban Spin on the Classic Mai Tai.