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Smuggler's Cove: Exotic Cocktails, Rum, and the Cult of Tiki Hardcover – June 7, 2016
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WINNER: 2017 JAMES BEARD FOUNDATION BOOK AWARD, BEVERAGE
WINNER: 2017 SPIRITED AWARDS (TALES OF THE COCKTAIL): BEST NEW COCKTAIL & BARTENDING BOOK
"Martin and Rebecca Cate are alchemists—Reyn Spooner–wearing, volcano-bowl-igniting, Polynesian-popping, double-straining, Aku-Aku swilling alchemists. Which is to say, they are the finest kind of alchemists known to walk the earth. Buy this book. It will bring you a little bit closer to paradise.”
—Wayne Curtis, author, And a Bottle of Rum: A History of the New World in Ten Cocktails
“With Smuggler’s Cove, Martin Cate did the impossible, folding up a whole rum-soaked sailing ship so that it would fit into a not-very-large San Francisco storefront. Now he’s done it again, and taken that tiki bar--one of the very finest bars I know—and folded it up so it fits between the pages of a book. Just add rum, and watch Smuggler’s Cove—and the whole vibrant, geeky, just a little bit unhinged world of tiki it so perfectly exemplifies— unfold in your lap.”
—David Wondrich, author of Imbibe! and Punch
“Tiki is simultaneously whimsical and sincere, simple and shockingly complex, which means understanding it can be challenging. This indispensable book explains it all—and is the definitive volume on one of the cocktail world’s most fascinating and complex genres. But in the end, tiki’s essence is based on captivating stories and exotic drinks, and Martin Cate’s Smuggler’s Cove is a tour de force in both.”
—Jordan Mackay, wine and spirits writer, and coauthor of Secrets of the Sommeliers
“Martin Cate understands tiki like few others do. He not only knows how to ask the right questions; in this book, he also answers many questions that I didn’t know I had. The old guard of Donn, Vic, and Steve can rest easy now that they have this champion of their tradition bringing tiki into the new millennium.”
—Sven Kirsten, author of The Book of Tiki, Tiki Modern, and Tiki Pop
“Here at last are the secrets behind one of the world’s best bars. The Cates have written an engaging, knowing, and personal book that is sure to please tiki lovers, cocktail lovers, and especially tiki-cocktail lovers. Abandon angst, all ye who enter here: like Smuggler’s Cove itself, these pages take leisure time very seriously.”
—Jeff “Beachbum” Berry, author of Potions of the Caribbean
“Martin Cate is an authority on rum, and this book will take your level of understanding of this noble yet complex spirit to a new level. Martin offers his own illuminating rum classification system, and also tackles controversial topics head-on, such as sweetening and the use of nebulous age statements. An absolute must-have for rum enthusiasts.”
—Richard Seale, master distiller, Foursquare Rum Distillery, Barbados
“The twenty-first-century revival of tiki cocktails was spearheaded by a handful of passionate tiki-geeks, Martin Cate among them. With Smuggler’s Cove, Martin and Rebecca teach you everything you need to know to become a tiki-geek in your own right—and to see the world with their Polynesian passion.”
–Gaz Regan, author of The Joy of Mixology and The Negroni
“Tiki culture is enmeshed with rum, and the authors offer a master class on it, covering its history and many varieties, as well as digressions on coring pineapples for cocktails and where to score cocktail umbrellas. It’s a terrifically fun and informative read, and the definitive resource on the topic.”
– Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
“The book walks readers through the history of tiki, as well as 100 recipes for cocktails. Not sure where to start with rum? There's a beginners' guide. There are also party tips, garnishing guides, and much more. In other words, all you need are some paper umbrellas and your summer is made.”
“Happily, the modern tiki era now has its own Magna Carta …. It’s a lavishly illustrated, seriously researched, 350-page tome with more than 100 recipes, along with a well-written history and sketches of some of the lesser known tiki lights . . .”
– The Daily Beast
"Martin and Rebecca Cate have managed to create an irresistible shrine to the magic of Polynesian pop culture. Beautifully designed and dripping in kitsch by way of photos by Dylan + Jeni, this is set to be the cocktail book of the summer."
"Your new tiki bible."
"With more than 100 recipes, both classic and modern (including homemade grenadine and coconut cream, of course), Smuggler's Cove is for anyone who appreciates the beauty of tropical drinks and wants to dig in deeper. A primer on essential tiki techniques as well as a thorough, authoritative guide to rum take you further than the typical booze book."
"Martin Cate is a scholar of tiki, and this long-anticipated cookbook is a respectful (and even academic) glimpse into that culture. . . . Smuggler’s Cove isn't just a book of recipes—it's a guide on how to transplant a beloved bar into your home."
"A lively exploration of our country's drinking history (and the current tiki scene), it's essential reading for rum lovers, offering the best categorization of the headspinning-ly diverse spirit that I've encountered."
– Serious Eats
"It's a must-have for any Mai Tai lover, Trader Vic's devotee or Hawaiian traveler . . . The book works equally well as a cocktail how-to, a rum guide, tiki party inspiration or must-do itinerary."
– San Jose Mercury News
About the Author
MARTIN CATE is a rum and exotic cocktail expert and the owner of Smuggler’s Cove in San Francisco. Smuggler’s Cove opened in 2009 and has been named one of the World’s 50 Best Bars (Drinks International, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015), 50 Best Bars on Earth (The Sunday Times, London), Top Ten Food and Beverage Concepts of the Last 25 Years (Cheers Magazine), 13 Most Influential Bars of the 21st Century (Liquor.com), and America’s Best Bars (Playboy, 2012 and Esquire, 2013). Smuggler's Cove was also awarded Best American Cocktail Bar at the 2016 Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Awards. A member of the United States Bartenders Guild (USBG), Martin conducts educational seminars and adjudicates rum and cocktail competitions across the United States, Europe, and the Caribbean. In 2015, along with partners Alex Smith and John Park, Martin opened Whitechapel in San Francisco to bring the same passion for history and craft to the world of gin. He is also the co-owner of Hale Pele in Portland and a partner in Lost Lake in Chicago and False Idol in San Diego.
In 1999, REBECCA CATE inadvertently fueled Martin’s madness by famously uttering words (which she thought were a joke) about making a spare bedroom a home tiki bar. Since then, however, she too has been swept up in the tiki fantasia, first as an enthusiast, then helping Martin open and run Smuggler’s Cove, while juggling a full-time career as a research psychologist “on the side.” Rebecca earned her PhD in personality and social psychology from The University of California at Berkeley in 2006, and has spent over a decade leading large-scale studies of behavioral health interventions as well as topics related to retirement and longevity. The opportunity to coauthor this book has allowed what had been just a weekend and vacation escape to turn into a full-time journey.
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The writing is clear and well-thought-out. The recipes give you all of the information you need and a lot of fascinating history in addition.
Not only is this book a wonderful guide to making some of the most interesting libations the 20th century had to offer, but it's also a historical record of where Polynesian Pop originated and proliferated, until its untimely demise in the 70s and 80s. This book comes to us at a time when Tiki is undergoing a revival.
And it makes me want to be a part of that!
Fun, informative, useful, and might just lead to a full-blown addiction. Or at least a new hobby.
Right from the beginning, the book is very visually pleasing. It has exotic colors, patterns, watercolor and illustrations. The book is full of visually stunning and evocative pictures, particularly nice given that the content repeatedly states how visually stunning and evocative Tiki is. I wouldn't describe myself as a 'picture book' kind of girl, but as someone whose attention span is so short as to raise very real questions, it makes the book feel less content heavy, or dusty. Just feeling like you are reading a fun book can go a long way towards actually finishing it.
Let's just get this out of the way early: I don't care about Tiki. I don't find it especially interesting or fun and it doesn't call to me the way that it clearly calls to the people writing and discussed in this book. That said, I have a great deal of respect for Tiki artists in the cocktail world. Their job is magnitudes more difficult than the average bartender and for that I am grateful. I've been looking for a good rum book for several months now and frequently this book is recommended to me. I put it off because I don't like or care about tiki, I like and care about Rum. While I was correct that this book didn't have sufficient information on Rum for my purposes (a measly 34 pages), I am still glad to have read it.
The first 70 pages or so are primary focused on the history of tiki, which is a fantastic addition to my history of cocktail knowledge and gives context for much of the 30's, 40's, and 50's. While the author can sometimes be slightly too prose-y for me in this section, it is clearly a trait born of love. His voice is clear and engaging and I felt like much of the book was very conversational.
In part 2 he discusses his own life and the journey to create his own tiki bar, a modern must-drink place in San Francisco. Finally, someplace I could potentially actually drive to... (Also, upon looking it up just now the second word in the Google description is 'kitschy' which is deeply ironic seeing as how Martin spends much of this book arguing that that word is insulting to him as a genuine tiki lover).
Next up we have Part Three: The Spirit of Rum. For the average consumer, this is more than enough information on rum to be getting started with. I myself found it incredibly useful and learned a great deal from it. He also gave several suggestions on books that focus more exclusively on rum, for which I thank him. From there, the rest of the book is about curating your own Tiki experience, from building to cocktails to parties. This was also very informative to me as a bartender (an actual real use for swizzle sticks? Who knew!?) regardless of my lack of tiki-related aspirations.
Overall, if you are even remotely interested in Tiki or Rum, it's a great read. Very informative, engaging, well written and clearly a labor of love. I may not be passionate about tiki, but I'm passionate about people who love what they do. Martin and Rebecca Cate clearly have found their passion and carved a space in the world in which to showcase it... sometimes literally.
Cate's book deserves a spot on any exotic drink fan's shelf. It's beautiful enough to sit on the coffee table, but this book will sit right along my Jeff Berry books - and deservedly so.
Even before I opened up the cover I had fallen in love with it. This book is filled with 300+ pages of not only great photo's of the past and present Tiki revival but so many great cocktail recipes, information on the history of Tiki Pop Culture, rum selections to use for each cocktail your making and even how to make your own mixing ingredients.
I'll be keeping this book on my tiki bar, can't wait to dive in and try some of these great cocktails!!!
Mahalo's Martin for making such an Awesome book!!!
Made 2 drinks so far with what already had on hand and both were epic. Haven't been able to put it down!