Stewards of Spirits: Black Sand Cooler

Stewards of Spirits: Black Sand Cooler

Have you had a chance to download, Stewards of Spirits: A Collection of Sacramento Cocktails and the People Who Make Them? If not, then why? Don't you want access to 26 of the best cocktail recipes out of Northern California and help a great nonprofit at the same time? Don't you want to be in the know cocktail-wise? All the cool kids are totally doing it.

We need you to drink for charity!

If you need some quick history on this fabulous e-cookbook, I teamed up with epic photographer, Callista Polhemus, and we interviewed 26 of Sacramento's bartender elite. We collected their stories, asked them about their passions, and begged for their favorite cocktails that best represented wither their personality or the Sacramento region. They delivered more than a FedEx deliveryman hopped up on espresso and speed.

This collection is beautifully photographed, packed with unique cocktail recipes, and bundled with plenty of appendices to help you up your cocktail game.

The book is free for download as many times as you'd like with your donation of $10 to the Food Literacy Center, an epic nonprofit organization teaching nutrition, gardening, and cooking to children in inner city schools. For the cost of a cocktail you'll get the ability to make 26 amazing cocktails. Quite. A. Deal.

We already tempted you with the California Cobbler cocktail, but here's one more from tiki drink master, Baron Stelling, who recently won National Restaurant Association’s Star of the Bar competition in Chicago. His tiki drink, the Black Sand Cooler, is a must-imbibe recipe for closing out the summer.

Be sure to download, Stewards of Spirits and get your drink on!


Baron Stelling being awesome.

Baron Stelling being awesome.

Black Sand Cooler, by Baron Stelling

If you can attend one lecture this year, it should be Baron Stelling’s discussion on the history of the tiki drink. He gives them year-round at whatever bar he is working at (usually Paragary’s) and whenever you ask him about the exotic world of tiki.

Stelling started his deep dive into the world of bartending nearly ten years ago, when he began to research cocktails. His interest only increased when he stumbled upon Mittie Hellmich’s classic tome The Ultimate Bar Book, which discussed advanced techniques, novel liqueurs, and promoted the use of fresh ingredients. A few years later, he had learned all he could from books and began working behind the bar in order to expand his education, even joining the local Bartender’s Guild.

However, his obsession with tiki drinks developed after visiting Tiki-Ti, a historical and still-operating tiki bar in Hollywood founded in 1961. Here he discovered the purpose of tiki: to offer a form of liquid escapism, a portal to better worlds and better times with drinks that engage all of the senses.

Since then, and with a lot of research, Stelling has firmly established himself as Sacramento’s tiki-master, tipling out glass after glass of tropical flavor—each served with a tiny umbrella.

The Black Sand Cooler is a refreshing, rich tiki drink with a dark flavor. A blend of rums is balanced by lime juice, sugar, and plenty of spice from an allspice dram.

What You'll Need:

  • 1 ½ ounces Plantation 3 Stars white rum (or other white rum)
  • ½ ounce Cruzan Black Strap rum (or other dark rum)
  • ¾ ounce fresh lime juice
  • ¾ ounce turbinado sugar syrup
  • ½ ounce allspice dram
  • 1 barspoon Smith and Cross Jamaican Rum (or other Jamaican rum)
  • 2 dashes Angostura Bitters
  • 2 dashes absinthe
  • Ice cubes
  • Root beer
  • Cherry for garnish (optional)
  • Orange peel swath for garnish (optional)
  • Cocktail umbrella (optional, but not really)

What You'll Do:

Place all of the ingredients except the root beer into an ice-filled shaker. Shake well and double strain the drink into a tall highball or tiki glass. Top with the root beer. Garnish with the orange peel, a skewered cherry, and a cocktail umbrella.

Stewards of Spirits: Falco Float

Stewards of Spirits: Falco Float

Stewards of Spirits: California Cobbler

Stewards of Spirits: California Cobbler