Elusive Dreams

This post contains affiliate links. See our disclosure policy here.

Get Our Recipes Sent To Your Inbox
Thanks! Keep an eye on your inbox for updates.

Cocktail History

The Elusive Dreams is a rum tiki cocktail that was created by Nashville bartender Demi Natoli as a riff on the Hotel Nacional. Natoli’s variation calls for the unexpected flavor of rich banana liqueur in place of the classic recipe’s apricot brandy, and it also features a touch of cinnamon syrup to bring the telltale spice of modern tiki to the table.

Cocktail Ingredients

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Pineapple Rum: This is one of the base spirits. We chose Plantation Stiggin’s Fancy Pineapple Rum because it has a rich rum taste with notes of pineapple, tropical fruits, citrus, and cloves.

Blended Unaged Rum: This is the other base spirit. We used Appleton Estate’s Gold Jamaican Rum because it’s a great affordable spirit with notes of spices and vanilla. 

Pineapple Juice: This adds sweet and fruity pineapple flavor. We prefer fresh pineapple juice, but you can substitute canned juice if that’s easier than juicing an entire pineapple.

Lime Juice: This adds sour citrus flavors that balance out the other ingredients. We prefer fresh lime juice because it’s less bitter than the bottled stuff and tastes better.

Cinnamon Syrup: This is a sweetener made with cinnamon sticks, white sugar, gum Arabic powder, saline solution, and water. We made ours at home using Alex’s sous vide recipe.

Banana Liqueur: This is a liqueur that adds banana flavor. We used Drillaud Banana Liqueur for its tangy and bright flavor.

Pineapple Wedge: This is one of the garnishes. It adds fresh pineapple aroma and flavor.

Tasting Notes

The Elusive Dreams begins with aromas of banana and pineapple and features a great combination of the tastes of rum, pineapple, and citrus before finishing with the lingering spice of cinnamon and the sweet aftertaste of banana.

Which of our palates is yours most like?
Find out if your palate is most similar to Alex’s or Kendall’s by answering five questions.

Take Our Quiz →

Which of our palates is yours most like?
Find out if your palate is most similar to Alex’s or Kendall’s by answering five questions.

Take Our Quiz →

Alex’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
“This cocktail was seriously great! I love the surprisingly bold banana flavor it has, which gives some funkiness to the otherwise fairly sweet mixture. The cinnamon syrup is able to give it just a hint of spice, but I love my spiciness so I might consider adding some bitters to the mixture next time to deepen that aspect of it and balance all of the sweetness a bit. Overall a great drink for me, but honestly one you may not love if you don’t like banana.”

Kendall’s Take: ⭐⭐
“The Hotel Nacional is one of my top ten favorite cocktails; it might even be my all-time fave for poolside sipping if I had to pick just one. That said, I really, really wanted to like this riff, but I just didn’t love the addition of banana to a cocktail I already consider perfected. The taste reminded me of the Banana Laffy Taffy I used to eat as a kid, and once I made that association, I couldn’t drink much more of it. I’ll be sticking to the classic formula with apricot brandy.”

Recipe

This cocktail recipe was adapted from Easy Tiki: A Modern Revival with 60 Recipes by Chloe Frechette.

Sale
Easy Tiki: A Modern Revival with 60 Recipes
Easy Tiki: A Modern Revival with 60 Recipes
Hardcover Book; Frechette, Chloe (Author); English (Publication Language); 176 Pages – 05/12/2020 (Publication Date) – Ten Speed Press (Publisher)
$11.99

AuthorEasy TikiPrep Time5 minsRating

Ingredients
 1 oz Pineapple Rum
 1 oz Blended Unaged Rum
 1 oz Pineapple Juice
 ¾ oz Lime Juice
 ½ oz Banana Liqueur
 1 Pineapple Wedge

Method
1

Add pineapple rum, unaged rum, pineapple juice, lime juice, cinnamon syrup, banana liqueur, and ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Strain into a cocktail glass.

4

Garnish with pineapple wedge.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 1 oz Pineapple Rum
 1 oz Blended Unaged Rum
 1 oz Pineapple Juice
 ¾ oz Lime Juice
 ½ oz Banana Liqueur
 1 Pineapple Wedge

Directions

Method
1

Add pineapple rum, unaged rum, pineapple juice, lime juice, cinnamon syrup, banana liqueur, and ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Strain into a cocktail glass.

4

Garnish with pineapple wedge.

Elusive Dreams

Tools & Glassware We Recommend

More Tiki Cocktails

If you like this tiki cocktail recipe, here are a few others we’ve tried that you may enjoy:

Caribe Daiquiri Cocktail Recipe

Caribe Daiquiri: A rum cocktail made with pineapple juice, lime juice, simple syrup, and a lime slice

Wishful Thinking Cocktail Recipe

Wishful Thinking: A sloe gin and rhum agricole cocktail made with ginger syrup, lime juice, absinthe, Angostura aromatic bitters, and a mint sprig

Zombie Cocktail Recipe

Zombie: A rum cocktail made with velvet falernum liqueur, Donn’s mix, lime juice, absinthe, grenadine, Angostura aromatic bitters, and mint

Junior Colada Cocktail Recipe

Junior Colada: A pineapple rum cocktail made with coconut liqueur, pineapple juice, lime juice, coconut soda, and pineapple fronds

This post contains affiliate links, meaning we make a small commission each time you purchase a product using our links. Product images sourced from Amazon Product Advertising API. Amazon affiliate links last updated on 2022-12-02.

Leave a comment