Lake Tahoe Drink of the Week: Kalani’s Waikiki |

Lake Tahoe Drink of the Week: Kalani’s Waikiki

Kalani’s Waikiki consist of fresh lemon, pineapple juice, orgeat syrup and Peychaud’s bitters. It’s garnished with luxardo cherries and an edible orchid.
Rob Galloway / Lake Tahoe Action

One of the largest components of Tahoe’s nightlife is the mix of countless breweries, bars and restaurants that offer unique drinks difficult to find outside the basin.

In our Drink of the Week segment, we’ll showcase one type of beer, wine, cocktail — you name it — to try around the basin.

It’s hard not to think of the beach when taking in this week’s drink. It is, after all, the name of a beach in Hawaii, so perhaps that has something to do with it.

Regardless, some sun and sand is just what this drink has in mind for anyone needing to quench their thirst.

The smell of this cocktail had me day dreaming of pink Starbursts. Before we move on, let’s all agree pink are the best. If anyone says yellow, stop reading this now and leave — we can’t be friends. Moving on …

While the main liquor in this cocktail is Bulleit bourbon, I wouldn’t say this is an all-in whiskey drink. Sure it’s there all the way through but you don’t really get the full taste of it until a second or so after each sip. That’s because all of the other ingredients balance it out so well it doesn’t need to bust out the Schwarzenegger and do the heavy lifting.

Fresh lemon, pineapple juice, orgeat syrup and Peychaud’s bitters round out the rest of the crew. It’s garnished with luxardo cherries and an edible orchid, although I kept my inner rabbit in check so no insight into how the flower tasted. The drink, however, tasted fantastic.

It’s slightly sweet on the front with a creaminess that vanilla ice cream would be jealous of. The almond nuttiness from the orgeat syrup really balances out that sweet perfectly.

While this drink doesn’t have one of those little umbrellas sticking out of it, Kalani’s Waikiki does transport you right in the middle of Tom Cruise talking of Flugelbinder, which is right back where we started this thing — on the beach.

Is there a place you’d rather be?

Kalani’s is located at 1001 Heavenly Village Way (suite 26) in South Lake Tahoe with happy hour running seven days a week from 3 to 6 p.m. For information visit or call 530-544-6100.

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