February 21, 2009

Thailand names ‘signature’ cocktail

Thailand has joined the ranks of New York, Singapore and Havana with its own signature cocktail, the Siam Sunray, tourism officials say.

While the classic New York Manhattan starts with bourbon, the Singapore Sling with gin and cherry brandy, and the Mojito with white rum, the Tourism Authority of Thailand says the Siam Sunray uses vodka. Other ingredients include syrup and lime juice, and some Thai ingredients such as coconut liqueur, chili and ginger, a leaf of Kaffir lime and three slivers of lemon grass, The Bangkok Post reported.

Successful signature drinks are one way to fast-track holiday destinations on to the world tourism map, the tourism bureau said in a statement. Visitors are always keen to have a taste of the local signature drink as part of their overall trip experience.

One problem, the newspaper said, is that three of the Siam Sunray's ingredients -- chili, ginger and lemon grass -- have been classified as hazardous substances by Thailand's Ministry of Industry because they are used as pesticide ingredients by organic farmers.