Paper Kamikaze

I’ve loved sour things since childhood. My childhood days were spent in a permanent pucker, from the industrial-sized sour patch kids bags I would order at the movie theater to competitively shoving as many warheads into my mouth as I could handle. Whiskey sours were my cocktail gateway drug. Which led to the “harder” stuff, like the old fashioned. As my tastebuds developed, I am now finding my favorite flavor profile is a spirit-forward drink with citrus undertones. 

The paper plane was an instant darling. I first drank it at the SFO American Centurion lounge, one of my favorite watering holes. The drink itself is a tantalizing shade of orange. From first sip, it’s bitter, complicated, and balanced. The drink is relatively new on the cocktail scene, invented in 2007 by Sam Ross of Milk & Honey fame. The original was named after MIA’s hit Paper Planes from Slumdog Millionaire. The song was impossible not to hear on the radio that summer. I guess Sam wanted to *boom boom* take your money? Get it?

After discovering it at Smuggler’s Cove a few weeks back, we picked up our own bottle of the smokey, tasty 1997 AD Rattray Caroni Distillery 18 year old rum. The rum drinks like a sweet, long aged, lightly peated scotch whiskey, and is fantastic neat and in cocktails as a substitute for bourbon. I set to work replacing bourbon with this deliciously peaty rum, which is balanced out with the sweet and bitter Campari and Amaro Averna amaros. 

Inspired by our trip to Japan (and also because our garnish decided to take a nosedive into the drink after the first few snaps), I’m proud to present: the paper kamikaze. 

Reddish drink in cocktail glass with red paper airplane on top of it
Geronimo! (What happened to the garnish after a few shots – in hindsight, we probably should have used a cocktail toothpick)


  • .75 oz Long Aged Rum (A.D Rattray Caroni 18 Year)
  • .75 oz Amaro Averna
  • .75 oz Campari
  • .75 oz Lemon Juice


Cocktail Glass


  • Add all ingredients to cocktail shaker.
  • Shake and strain into cocktial glass.
  • Garnish with a little paper airplane (thanks to for the idea). Ours fell in and led to the name.

2 thoughts on “Paper Kamikaze

  • 2021-04-08 at 6:00 pm

    Kamikaze is the terrible human rights violations that caused by Japan Military. It is wrong to use word ‘proud’, or making paper airplane. You are using people’s death to enjoy. If you doesn’t know the exact meaning of Kamikaze, don’t use it. Kamikaze was a terrible incident that used people as a weapon. Stop using person’s deaths to enjoy.


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