My "Drinking in LA" Cocktail - A strong, fruity, tropical cocktail that comes together quickly. Inspired by Bran Van 3000 and my ... adventure... on Masterchef.
Originally published May 7, 2013. Updated on 5/25/2021
Well, more accurately, I created it while being holed up in my hotel room!
Anyway, a few days after arriving in Los Angeles, we were allowed to go to a nearby mall... it was like getting sprung from jail!
We were allowed to roam free for a couple hours, no babysitters/wardens, no need to ask permission to go to the washroom. It was kind of awesome, even if I hate malls. FREEDOM!
You know what else is awesome? The fact that you can buy booze at Target in LA.
Now, I've seen booze for sale in grocery stores before - in Chicago. Wish it could be that way here in MN, but apparently buying booze on a Sunday means you're going to hell, soo... yeah.
The Creation of the “Drinking in LA”
Anyway, seeing booze on a random endcap in a Target was just so novel, I had to giggle. Then, I HAD to buy something, just to say I did.
I settled on a bottle of Malibu. It seemed appropriate, between all the palm trees everywhere, and the general atmosphere of the whole experience. I imagined that this was what college feels like (I wouldn't know!), and to me, Malibu = young drinking, haha!
I'd already had some UV Pink Lemonade Vodka in the hotel room from an earlier grocery store run, along with various mixers and everyday drinks.
Sure, there was a hotel bar, but I am cheap.. AND a poor tornado victim, so was not going to be paying hotel cocktail prices.
Best to plan ahead!
Let's be clear - there was a LOT of drinking happening out there. I'll never look at a hotel room disposable coffee mug - or boxes of wine - the same way again.
As you already know, I like my drinks to basically be "diabetes in a glass". Sweet, fruity, and fairly girly... and the Drinking in LA certainly fits the bill.
It'll also sneak up on you, so be careful. Very easy to get thoroughly trashed on this, without even realizing it. Shortly before originally posting this recipe, my LA roomie asked me if I had slipped MDMA into our drinks, LOL!
“Drinking in LA”: The Namesake
When I was in my late teens - in Winnipeg - “Drinking in LA” by Bran Van 3000 was HUGE.
It came out at a great time, for my generation, IMHO. It’s always seemed - to me - to basically be an aural existential crisis. What am I doing with my life, where do I go from here, etc.
You know, perfect for someone entering adulthood!
The song was very much a theme for me, when out on my reality show adventure.
Before being contacted to audition, I’d never watched the show. I don’t even remember if I’d heard of it before then - I wasn’t a reality show fan, and I *definitely* wasn’t someone who watched Fox often!
... however, I had found myself in kind of an existential crisis myself, I guess. We were still recovering from the tornado, and I was VERY unhappy living in the USA. I just didn’t see any way out, financially or logistically.
As a result, I did something very out of character, and went on reality TV. It was all about the possibility that it could be a road out of Minnesota... but when I was out in LA, there was very much a running theme of “What the hell am I doing?”.
So... it seemed like the perfect name for the cocktail recipe conceived while in reality show lockdown.
The “Official” Drinking in LA Presentation
As you may notice from some of the photos here, I rallied to eschew our typical professional styled drink photography setup, to present this cocktail in its original form.
Sure, there were the small rocks glasses available in our hotel rooms... but the disposable coffee mugs afforded us portability.
Not only were we able to bring our paper cups out to the pool area (no glass allowed, naturally)... but we could put the plastic lids on and proceed to drink our asses off in the main hotel lobby - even in the bar area - undetected!
A neat trick, and something to keep in mind for conventions, haha! I have no idea why this never occurred to me before.
Most cocktails have a specific type of glassware associated with it, as the traditional/suggested/ “proper” way to serve it.
So, as the creator of the Drinking in LA, I’m staking my claim on that determination, here:
Officially, this cocktail should be served in a disposable hotel coffee mug, for authenticity.
Glassware is fine, though 🙂 My husband did talk me into allowing him to photograph it as a “proper” cocktail as well!
Interested in boozy culinary fun? You should check out my first cookbook, The Spirited Baker. It’s FULL of fun, tasty recipes using spirits and liqueurs for flavour – you should check it out:
Combining liqueurs with more traditional baking ingredients can yield spectacular results.Try Mango Mojito Upside Down Cake, Candy Apple Flan, Jalapeno Beer Peanut Brittle, Lynchburg Lemonade Cupcakes, Pina Colada Rum Cake, Strawberry Daiquiri Chiffon Pie, and so much more.
To further add to your creative possibilities, the first chapter teaches how to infuse spirits to make both basic and cream liqueurs, as well as home made flavor extracts! This book contains over 160 easy to make recipes, with variation suggestions to help create hundreds more! Order your hard copy here on my website, through Amazon, or through any major bookseller.
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"Drinking in LA" Cocktail
- 2 oz Limeade
- 2 oz Malibu Rum Liqueur
- 2 oz Sierra Mist Or other lemon-lime soda
- 1 oz Pink Lemonade Vodka
- Measure ingredients into a shaker*.
- Add a handful of ice, shake a few times, strain into disposable coffee cup.