The Port Light is one of the few tiki drinks made with bourbon rather than rum. It was developed by Sandro Conti for the Kahiki in Columbus, Ohio in the early 1960s. The Kahiki was one of the last major tiki temples, a multi-building complex topped with a three-story tall fireplace in the shape of a moai.
1.5 oz bourbon
1 oz lemon juice
0.5 oz passionfruit syrup (B.G. Reynolds)
0.25 oz grenadine (or raspberry syrup)
Combine all ingredients with a handful of crushed ice, blend for 5 seconds, then pour unstrained into a chilled rocks glass with more crushed ice.
The nose is relatively weak, but the bourbon manages to assert itself through all the ice. The sip opens with bourbon barrel notes, which transition into a fruity melange of passionfruit and raspberry, which continue through to the finish while a bit of lemon bite pokes out.
With the right amount of crushed ice, this is basically a bourbon/fruit slushy. What's not to love? The passionfruit/raspberry syrup combo works really well keeping the drink from becoming insipid, with just about everything providing some snap. Overall a very tasty drink and a good way to ease whiskey-drinking friends into the world of tiki.
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