Malibu Beach Barbie · Area Four
Paid Vacation · The Backroom at Moody's
Rainbow Road · A4cade
If you thought your days of sipping a Sex on the Beach were over, think again. The maligned classic has undergone a modern makeover at Area Four’s South End location, and this time it goes by the name of Malibu Beach Barbie.
For bar manager Tainah Soares, the drink’s retro vibe is key to its appeal. “Our decor screams 1970s, so I figured I’d run with it and do the same for the cocktail menu,” she says.
While Soares didn’t tinker with Sex on the Beach’s feel-good vibes, she did up the ante on ingredients. Her version uses a house-infused peach vodka instead of peach schnapps (to cut down on sugar) and adds curaçao for a dry finish. Lemon juice adds brightness, and simple syrup makes up for some of the sweetness lost by foregoing schnapps and orange juice. “It isn’t super sweet, but it still has the same flavor profile [as the original drink,]” the bar manager adds.
The drink’s elaborate presentation involves a sand bucket and—of course—a Barbie Doll. Home bartenders can make do with a simple double rocks glass instead (but miniature umbrellas are highly encouraged).
Malibu Beach Barbie
1½ ounces peach-infused vodka*
½ ounce Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao
½ ounce Perfect Purée of Napa Valley Cranberry
¾ ounce fresh lemon juice
½ ounce simple syrup
Combine ingredients in shaker filled with ice. Shake until chilled and strain into double rocks glass with fresh ice. Garnish with orange peel flower, mint sprig, and cocktail umbrella.
*Peach-Infused Vodka (makes 1 liter)
4 large peaches, diced
1 liter vodka
Combine peaches and pits with vodka in a sealed container. Let mixture sit at room temperature, away from light, for two days. Strain liquid into bottle and refrigerate.