There's more to Caribbean drinks than yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum. Whether juice, soda pop or tonic, all claim to stimulate the taste buds. Some island elixirs make even more dubious claims for another kind of arousal. Regardless, rum does help.
PRICE: $1.25/285 ml
THEY SAY: "from Jamaican grapefruit"
NOW SAYS: add vodka to this sour Mountain Dew for a fab Ting-tini
2. TIGER MALT
PRICE: 99 cents/341 ml
THEY SAY: "gold medal winner Bruxelles 2000"
NOW SAYS: non-alcoholic molasses stout
3. MALTA CARIB
PRICE: 99 cents/275 ml
THEY SAY: "malt beverage"
NOW SAYS malted root beer Rating: NN
4. WHITEWAY'S CYDRAX
THEY SAY: "sparkling apple drink"
NOW SAYS: fizzy apple ginger ale looks swank in a wine goblet, good mixer
5. DRAGON RAM JAM FRONT END LIFTER
PRICE: $3.99/354 ml
THEY SAY: to "add energy to your sexual life" and "all man strength, use one bottle at any one time"
NOW SAYS: limp-dicked cola Rating: NN
6. GRACE'S COCONUT WATER
PRICE: 99 cents/520 ml
THEY SAY: "relax, enjoy and refresh your inner self" with "the ultimate thirst quencher"
NOW SAYS: sold in tallboy cans, poured into a glass it resembles spermatic soda
7. SORREL FIZZZ
PRICE: 85 cents/300 ml
THEY SAY: "carbonated beverage"
NOW SAYS: cinnamon cream soda
8. SUGAR-CANE JUICE
PRICE: 89 cents/250 ml
THEY SAY: "natural"
NOW SAYS: stinky and medicinal-tasting
9. MAUBY FIZZZ
PRICE: 85 cents/300 ml
THEY SAY: "Cool yourself… contains mauby bark."
NOW SAYS: black licorice pop, the Brio of the Caribbean
10. VITA MALT
PRICE: $1.25/330 ml
THEY SAY: "percentage of recommended daily intake: vitamin B12 36%"
NOW SAYS: flat Pepsi
11. POWER MALT
PRICE: 99 cents/330 ml
THEY SAY: "by appointment to the Royal Danish court"
NOW SAYS: sweet Guinness-like near-beer
12. TROPICAL RHYTHM'S WEJEES
PRICE: 50 cents/200 ml
THEY SAY: "guava lava ding dong"
NOW SAYS: in between nectar and juice, makes a great Slurpee when frozen, or just add rum
13. CHUBBY GREEN CREAM SODA
PRICE: 3 for 89 cents/250 ml
THEY SAY: "visit www. chubbykidsclub.com"
NOW SAYS: fizzy mouthwash Rating: NN
14. GRACE'S IRISH MOSS
PRICE: $1.99/285 ml
THEY SAY: "discover the hidden appeal" of "sea moss flavoured drink"
NOW SAYS: foamy beige Pepto-Bismol
15. MR. VIGOROUS ROOTS TONIC
PRICE: $3.99/300 ml
THEY SAY: "natural flavour for energy, strength, vigour, vitality, weight loss, nerve building, stimulate sex drive"
NOW SAYS: powerful but vile-tasting.
Baldwin Grocery, 173 Baldwin, 416-971-5860
Bright Leaf Market, 671 Vaughan, 416-656-9525 Caribbean Corner, 171 Baldwin, 416-593-0008 Caribbean Market, 638 St. Clair West, 416-652-0277
Joyce's West Indies Food, 854 Bathurst, 416-533-4872 Nicey's Food, 621 Vaughan, 416-656-5648
Tropical Food King, 605 Oakwood, 416-781-3095
West Indian Food Discount, 218 Vaughan, 416-651-9074