Hula’s mai tai – Hula’s Island Grill

Hula's mai tai - Hula's Island Grill

Appleton’s gold rum, DeKuyper orange curacao, pineapple and lime juice, orgeat, Goslings Black Seal rum. $7
Hula’s Island Grill, Santa Cruz CA

There was something off with this cocktail. Perhaps the pineapple juice was old, but something just didn’t taste right. This was unfortunate because I do love my mai tai’s.

The Mystery Spot sign
The Mystery Spot sign.

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Don’s original mai tai – Don the Beachcomber

Don's original mai tai - Don the Beachcomber

Old school is in session with this original preparation of what is now often modified. Don has many claims to fame but none as bold as this fine cocktail. Bacardi 8, orange curacao, Whaler’s dark rum, fresh lime and a few smuggler’s secrets make this 1933 classic a must. Happy hour $5.25
Don the Beachcomber, Kailua-Kona HI

Mmm, this tasted like a vacation! Don’s sit right on Kailua Bay so you get a perfect view of the sunset. Wish I was back there!

Sunset over Kailua Bay
Sunset over Kailua Bay from our table.

Cocktails – Duke’s Waikiki

Duke's Mai Tai - Duke's Waikiki
Duke’s Mai Tai: Hawaiian juices with two different types of rum and orange curacao. $9
Duke’s Waikiki, Honolulu HI

Duke’s is super touristy, but it’s still nice to sit outside on Waikiki beach and enjoy the sunset. The food is middle of the road and the drinks are weak and sugary, but that’s OK because you’re on vacation, lol! The mai tai had good flavor though.

Mango-Rita cocktail - Duke's Waikiki
Mango-Rita: Jose Cuervo Gold tequila, mango, lime and triple sec. $8.50
This was more on the lime side than on the mango side and it could have used another shot of tequila. Oh well.

Duke's Waikiki sunset
Sunset from the back patio at Duke’s Waikiki.