Sunday, December 27, 2009

Kicking Back With Kalik




It's the middle of the holiday season and after four straight days ( Christmas Eve, Christmas, birthday, Kwanzaa)  of celebrating, I'm finally relaxing. For me, that means a book, music and a cup of tea.  My relaxation ritual made me remember how I observed the locals unwinding on Eleuthera and Harbour Island. Despite the popularity and common association with tourists, I never saw a native Bahamian touch a Bahama Mama  or Yellow Bird cocktail. Instead, I saw them relaxing at cafes, eating conch fritters and drinking tea, coconut water or Goombay Punch.  Forget Coke or Pepsi, the go to soda in the Bahamas is the  sweet, bubbly, red, Goombay Punch. I've heard the taste described as a pineapple Life Saver and that pretty much sums it up except I think its a lot more refreshing.




Another alternative for a quick break is Goombay Fruit Champagne. It's less sweet than the punch and tastes like cream soda. I saw school children drinking cans of this walking home from school.


The most ubiquitous beverage that I saw locals sipping everywhere, from bars to beaches, was Kalik, the national beer. Pronounced (ca Lick), it's named for the sound that Goombay bells make during Junkanoo. Almost like  they were making a point of cultural pride, whenever I saw Bahamians relaxing, a Kalik was typically nearby. It tastes light and zesty and makes a good relaxation aid. What's your favorite way to relax?

20 comments:

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Tiffany said...

That first can is so cute.

Heather on her travels said...

That's always a good policy to follow the local's lead in where and what to eat and drink - you can always look around you and point and say 'I'll have what they're having' or ask you waiter what the most popular local drink is.

Fly Girl said...

Tiffany, its my fave of all the local soda cans that I've seen on my travels.

Heather,its tricky sometimes. Locals will often suggest what they think tourists like (Bahama Mama) instead of what they like. I always observe closely what locals eat and drink to make sure I get it right.

Jean-Luc Picard said...

Both sound mouthwateringly tasty!

A Cuban In London said...

A very informative and interesting post. In my case, I like kicking back with some 'mate', brewed in my purpose-built gourd. It's almost like a ritual. You put the mate in the container(about two thirds of the gourd), cover the mouth and turn ii upside down so that the stem goes to the bottom. Then you pour the hot (not boiling!) water in and let it absorb the bitter taste. Sometimes I drink it straight (if I'm having cakes), or sweeten it up with honey.

Many thanks for your lovely post.

Greetings from London.

Lola said...

Observing what the locals are eating/drinking is definitely the way to go.

"Goombay Punch" - very cute can indeed.

shantiwallah said...

Goombay Punch! That's the one! Thank you for posting this. I'll send a link to my family who will remember it fondly:-)

jen laceda said...

The first can is quite a clever brand! Happy holidays!

Eileen said...

we have a bubble-gum flavored soda here called Bilz (which always reminds me of the word bilge) which makes me wonder if I really should follow the locals' lead. But for the true Chilean experience, I suppose I should! Love your food and drink talk, always!

Fly Girl said...

Jean-Luc I think each one is very tasty.

Cubano, mate sounds like a lovely way to relax. I've never tried it from a gourd but I'm sure that it adds a little something.

Lola, I thought you'd like that graphic.

Shanti, I posted this especially with you in mind.

Jen, Happy holidays to you too!

Eileen, bubble gum flavored soda sounds a little too sweet even for me. But I think you should try it for that authentic experience!

PJ said...

Enjoyed your post!

As many times as I've been to Eleuthera, I've never seen the fruit champagne. I'll definitely have to try that next time were down.

Fly Girl said...

PJ, the fruit champagne isn't as popular as the punch but if you ask for it, most places will have it. Thanks for dropping by!

pj said...
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PJ said...

Fruit champagne! So original. Can't wait to try it.

Did you get to see the beautiful signage for Kalik on the liquor store in Governor's Harbour? I managed to get a decent shot of it: Kalik Beer

How long were you on Eleuthera / Harbour Island? It's one of our favorites. Going back this Spring.

Travel journo, eh? I'm going to have spend more time checking out your posts. Chi town girl no less. We love our sister city Chicago!! Love seeing jazz concerts at The Chicago Theater. Been there often -- we're from St. Lou.

Fly Girl said...

PJ, I did see the signage! Thanks for checking out my posts.

carol said...

glad your warm because I'm visiting Illinois and is colder then...I don't know what but dang it is COLD.

Ekua said...

It's always fun to try new beverages in other countries. I remember my first sip of Guarana in Brazil, it was life changing ;) Maybe I'm being a little dramatic...

Fly Girl said...

Carol, I'm actually in Illinois as well so I'm not warm!

Ekua, I don't think you're being dramatic at all. I vividly remember my first sip of Guarana as well, I'll never forget. I wrote a post about it.

prashant said...
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