I miss Summer. For the last three years our family has been tucked up in a far corner of the Presidio close to the Golden Gate Bridge. The setting is ideal for us in almost every aspect except the Summer weather. Fall, Winter, and Spring are fine, but Summer on our street involves being blanketed in a coastal fog layer which spills daily through the mouth of San Francisco Bay.
From July through September, I commute to Summer by driving out of and back into an actual cloud. Unlike our friends just miles away, we don't sip long drinks outside in the Summer (a batch of toddies is more applicable). For us, Summer is only a concept.
Thankfully this year my wife took climate matters into her own hands and accepted an invitation to Kona for a work trip. Even better: the "work" turned out to be working on suntans, swimming, and a fixing a drink or two. During one long week, our family thawed out in a land of perpetual Summer. Taking advantage of our new tropical setting, I looked for some local products to concoct something exotic and refreshing. At a farmers market, I found just the right thing - a minimally processed, fresh guava jam. Though it is not a native fruit and it is used extensively across the globe, guava is the fruit I most associate with Hawaii. As a kid I sucked down guava nectar by the pitcher. Many guava drinks we would find at the supermarket today contain corn syrup and do not make for great cocktail ingredients.That's why Honomu Jams & Jellies have the kind of product I like. They grow all their own fruits on their farms on the lush eastern side of the island, and add only enough cane sugar to balance the tart guava which is available in both white and pink varieties. In addition to guava, they have exceptional lilikoi (passion fruit), coconut, mango and many more Hawaiian specialties. Lucky for mainlanders like myself, they are available online. I will just have to save my case of guava jam until Indian Summer arrives, or smuggle some over to our friends over at the Cove.
- 1.75 oz Espolón reposado tequila
- 1.5 oz guava-hibiscus mix*
- .5 oz lime
- rim cinnamon-chili salt
Salt half the rim of a rocks glass and chill it. Pour all ingredients into a shaker with ice, shake and strain into the chilled, salted glass over fresh ice. Garnish with a tropical blossom (note: plumeria should not be ingested).
*Combine 7 oz. guava jam with 7 oz. hibiscus tea and 1 oz. agave nectar