Paradise Lost

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Cocktail History

The Paradise Lost is a vodka and sherry tiki cocktail that was created by Kirk Estopinal while at Cane & Table, a bar in New Orleans, Louisiana. The recipe was the product of his trying to make a drink that was “tiki but of the moment.” He achieved it with the contemporary yet classic usage of sherry that delivers a hit of dryness in this recipe and keeps the alcohol level lower, while the clever implementation of coconut water brings just a bit of flavor without the loud and colorful qualities of the coconut cream you usually find in tiki cocktails.

Cocktail Ingredients

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

Vodka: This is one of the base spirits. We used Smirnoff Vodka because it’s high quality and affordable.

Fino Sherry: This is the other base spirit. It’s a dry, fortified wine made from palomino grapes.

Coconut Water: This is a type of juice that adds coconut flavor without the thicker texture found in cream of coconut or coconut milk. We used Vita Coco Coconut Water.

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.

Orgeat Syrup: This is a sweet syrup made with almonds, sugar, and rose or orange flower water. It adds more sweetness to balance out the spirits and lends its unique nutty flavor that is often found in tiki drinks.

Angostura Aromatic Bitters: This is a type of spirit infused with botanicals. They add more spice and complexity to the drink and tie the other flavors together.

Mint Sprig: This is the garnish. It adds fragrant mint aromas.

Tasting Notes

The Paradise Lost begins with aromas of cool mint and tangy allspice and has a bright citrus-forward nuttiness in the initial taste followed by a lingering aftertaste of coconut and dry sherry.

Our Opinion of This Cocktail Recipe: The vodka is a chameleon here, giving the other ingredients an opportunity to shine without having a prevalent taste of its own, and the use of bitters right on top gives off a pleasant spiced aroma without affecting the remaining flavors. If you’re like Kendall and aren’t too fond of sherry, this one may not be a favorite. But for those of you like Alex who enjoy its unmistakable taste and dryness, you’ll find this a pleasantly subdued and very sessionable tiki drink. 

Alex’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
“I actually really liked this recipe. For me, it struck a great balance between being a super tasty tiki drink with great tropical flavors and a fun mood and being a “serious” drink by the strategic inclusion of sherry. I’ll also never say no to orgeat in a cocktail. Another thing I loved was the lower ABV, which is always great since it means you get to enjoy more of them. This is one I would definitely make again, especially on a day when I’m starting earlier than evening.”

Kendall’s Take: ⭐⭐
“After trying so many rum and coconut cream tiki drinks this summer, it was nice to break up the flavors with a recipe made using a different base. I knew this cocktail would be unique when I saw vodka and sherry on its ingredient list; unfortunately for me though, I’ve realized I’m just not the biggest fan of sherry. Much like absinthe, I find it to be too overpowering… or maybe distracting is the right word? Either way, that was about all I tasted in this one, so I only had a few sips and let Alex finish the rest. I suppose I’ll be sticking to more traditional tiki ingredients for now.”

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 Vodka
 1 oz Fino Sherry
 1 oz Coconut Water
 ¾ oz Lime Juice
 ½ oz Orgeat Syrup
 2 dashes Angostura Aromatic Bitters
 1 Mint Sprig

Method
1

Add vodka, sherry, coconut water, lime juice, orgeat syrup, and ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Strain into a Pilsner glass over crushed ice.

4

Top with bitters.

5

Stir gently for 1-2 seconds.

6

Garnish with mint sprig.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 1 oz Vodka
 1 oz Fino Sherry
 1 oz Coconut Water
 ¾ oz Lime Juice
 ½ oz Orgeat Syrup
 2 dashes Angostura Aromatic Bitters
 1 Mint Sprig

Directions

Method
1

Add vodka, sherry, coconut water, lime juice, orgeat syrup, and ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Strain into a Pilsner glass over crushed ice.

4

Top with bitters.

5

Stir gently for 1-2 seconds.

6

Garnish with mint sprig.

Paradise Lost

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:

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

 Ginger Inferno: A rum cocktail made with ginger liqueur, velvet falernum liqueur, lime juice, lemon juice, cinnamon syrup, a lime slice, and candied ginger

 Greena Colada: A rum cocktail made with triple sec, lime juice, lemon juice, Green Chartreuse, velvet falernum liqueur, crème of coconut, mint, and a lime wheel

 Fog Cutter: A rum, brandy, gin, and sherry cocktail made with triple sec, lemon juice, orgeat syrup, an orange peel, mint, and an orchid blossom

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