12 August 2021

Walt Disney World 50 for 50: Presented Nightly

The Top of the World Lounge is one of the finest hangouts for Disney Vacation Club members, but that name has a storied place in the history of Walt Disney World. From opening day in 1971 until September 30, 1993, the Top of the World was the pinnacle of dining and entertainment. Literally, it sat on the 15th floor of the Contemporary Resort before being replaced by California Grill. Aside from entertainment, including the star-studded Broadway at the Top, it was known for fine dining and cocktails.
Some of these beverages carried names reminiscent of attractions at the Vacation Kingdom. Most specifically, they were named after the various monorails. We touched upon these monorail inspired cocktails many years ago, but never tried them out for ourselves. We thought now is the time, now is the best time, to give these drinks a try. We opted to whip up both the Monorail Red and Monorail Yellow. Thoughts after the recipes.
Monorail Red

1 ¼ Ounces Tequila
¾ Ounces Sweet Licorice-Flavored Liqueur
¾ Ounce Grenadine
2 ½ Ounce Lemon Bar Mix
2 Ounces Pineapple Juice
¾ Cup Crushed Ice
Maraschino Cherry


Combine tequila, licorice liqueur, grenadine, lemon bar mix, pineapple, and ice in a blender.
Blend for 10 seconds and pour into a tall glass.
Garnish with maraschino cherry.

Monorail Yellow


1 ½ Ounces Rum
3 Ounces Orange Juice
¾ Ounce Coconut Cream
2 ½ Ounces Pineapple Juice
¾ Cup Crushed Ice
Orange Slice
Maraschino Cherry


Combine rum, orange juice, coconut cream, pineapple juice, and ice in a blender.
Blend for 10 seconds and pour into a tall glass.
Garnish with maraschino cherry and orange slice.
First things first, 1970s bartending loves drinks that take crushed ice and blend it up into an Icee or smoothie type of drink. It’s unnecessary here. In fact, I think it actually gets in the way of what are otherwise interesting cocktails. Instead, try shaking with crushed ice and the either pouring the whole thing into a glass or straining it over a large ice cube in a glass.
The lemon bar mix in the Monorail Red threw me for a minute, and I’m not afraid to admit it. I had to pause because my mind immediately went to the baked goods mix for lemon bars or lemon squares. That’s not what this is. It is a powdered concentrate that creates a lemon beverage. Think Kool-Aid, but much tarter. It’s fine, but I would opt for utilizing lemon juice instead in the future.
Monorail Red comes out tasting like you took a black jellybean and a lemon jellybean, combined it with a shot of liqueur, and put the whole thing in a glass. Seriously, it should not work on any level; and yet, I found it delightful and wanting to play with the ingredients to make it better version of itself. For the sweet licorice liqueur, I opted to use Pernod. If you’re not a fan of licorice, anise, or ouzo, this isn’t going to be a winner for you. That said, if you do like these types of flavors, you should definitely give this a try.
As for Monorail Yellow, this is a much more common tropical type of cocktail. If you like rum-based beverages, with fruit flavors and some coconut on the back of each sip, you’ll be thrilled with this drink. None of the ingredients are hard to come by or overly expensive, and you’ll feel more like you’re on the beach at the Polynesian Village than the top of the Contemporary.
Whichever monorail line you choose, these cocktails are sure to send you back to those early years of Walt Disney World.

No comments: