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NOVEMBER/THANKSGIVING COCKTAIL: Pumpkin Paradise From Tommy Bahama

We love the food at Tommy Bahama, so every time we receive a recipe from them, we make it (or ideally, head to the nearest Tommy Bahama restaurant and have it served to us, along with some delicious cuisine).

This sophisticated cocktail is perfect for the month of November, until cranberry flavors take over in December.

Tommy used canned pumpkin purée, maple syrup and a dash of bitters to make the base, along with Knob Creek bourbon and Sailor Jerry spiced rum (of course, you can use the brands you have on hand).

The drink is then finished with some ginger beer and the juice from a lime wedge. Why not make Pumpkin Paradise your house cocktail for November…or enjoyed it any Tommy Bahama Restaurant & Bar:


Ingredients Per Drink

  • 1 part Knob Creek bourbon
  • 1 part Sailor Jerry spiced rum
  • 1 teaspoon canned pumpkin purée (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • ¼ part maple syrup
  • 1 dash orange bitters
  • Juice of 1 lime wedge
  • 2 parts ginger beer

    1. PLACE all ingredients except the ginger beer in a mixing glass. Add ice and shake with the mixing tin to break up the purée.

    2. STRAIN into double rocks glass over fresh ice. Top with ginger beer. If desired, garnish with grated nutmeg.

    Unless you’re an industry professional, it’s easy to get confused by the various names used for what seem to be the same cocktail glasses. Here’s a quick brush-up:
    Old Fashioned Glass or Rocks Glass

    The Old Fashioned glass, named after one of the original cocktails that was served in it, is also known as a rocks glass, a lowball (in contrast to the highball, or Collins glass), or tumbler.

    Centuries ago, the glasses were much smaller, holding only a couple of ounces of whiskey—which is what bar patrons purchased before the advent of the cocktail (the history of cocktails).

    There were no ice cubes back then (except in the ice houses of the wealthy), so no room was needed for them. Essentially, people were drinking double shots. Today, a cocktail can hold from two to four ounces of a spirit.

    These days the sizes of rocks glasses are typically:

  • 6-10 ounces for a standard rocks glass.
  • 12-16 ounces for a double rocks glass.
  • The glasses can have straight sides, or angle down to the base.

      Pumpkin Paradise Cocktail
    [1] You can make Pumpkin Paradise your signature house cocktail for November (photo courtesy Tommy Bahama).

    Rocks Glass
    2. A rocks, or Old Fashioned, glass (photo courtesy Liquor.com).

    Tom Collins
    [3] A highball, or Collins, glass (photo courtesy Liquor.com).

    Rocks glasses are used for drinks built in the glass; no cocktail shaker or mixing glass is used. The ingredients are often added atop the rocks themselves, i.e., poured over the ice cubes. Alternatively, the rocks are added afterwards, with tongs.

    Highball Glass Or Collins Glass

    Tall drinks are served in straight-sided (“chimney”) glasses that have a few different names. There are minor distinctions; although for home use, one glass—highball or Collins—is enough.

    You may hear the terms highball glass, Collins glass or Delmonico. Technically, each of those refers to a specific variation with the chimney shape.

    Traditionally, each glass is used for specific cocktails; for example, a Gin Fizz in a highball glass and a Tom Collins in Collins glass, but the differences aren’t very important unless you’re an obsessive mixologist. What is important is that much like a champagne flute, the tall and narrow shape keeps your drink cold and carbonated because of its limited surface area

  • The highball is wider and shorter than the Collins, 8-12 ounces.
  • The Collins is narrow and straight, 12-16 ounces.
  • There is also a Delmonico glass, shorter than the first two (5-8 ounces); but an online search couldn’t even come up with a drink that is served in it.


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