By Ida Rosenberg
Photos by Brevin Blach
In the 1970s, the South African town of Jeffrey’s Bay (aka J-Bay) was a haven for counterculture. Today, it’s one of the world’s top surfing destinations and host to the Billabong Pro J-Bay surf tournament, to be held July 15 to 25 at Supertubes, a 1,000-foot stretch of coastline regarded as one of the planet’s toughest high-performance surf breaks (beautiful beach, long flight).
Lucky for us, Dieter May and his crew at the legendary Pacific Beach eatery, World Famous, have brought South Africa closer to home with the South African J-Bay Wine Spritzer. This clearly irresistible thirst-quencher looks like a tall, cool glass of water, but it’s actually a refreshing blend of crisp, South African chenin blanc wine; sweet, wild elderflower liqueur and a lemon-lime splash.
May hopes this cocktail and the other drinks comprising his annual list of beachthemed concoctions will kick-start summer in San Diego. If the rate at which people flock to his restaurant is any indicator, May may get his wish.
16 Number of beach-themed drinks on the menu at World Famous
9,868 Number of miles from San Diego to the beaches of Cape Town, South Africa
$2,363 Cost of driving to Cape Town from San Diego (assuming 20 MPG, $4.75 per gallon and paved oceans)
26 Number of years since Dieter May opened World Famous
Other delicious beach drinks available at World Famous
Silver Blossom Martini
This Sunset Strip favorite is made from rock candy syrup, fresh lemon juice and Nolet’s Silver gin, shaken and served up with a splash of champagne.
World Famous was inspired by the island of Maui, blending organic Ocean sugarcane vodka with sweet passion fruit and cranberry juices, served up in a chilled, blue-stem martini glass.
Cape Hatteras Sweet Tea
From Hatteras Island on the outer banks of North Carolina (known as the blue marlin capital of the world), World Famous serves up this mix of Sweet Tea vodka and lemonade, served over cracked ice.
World Famous pairs its lemonade with Ketel One Citroen vodka, sweet and sour mix, a Cointreau splash and a fresh lemon squeeze, served over ice.
St. Germain Pear Martini
St. Germain elderflower liqueur is mixed with Grey Goose La Poire vodka, chilled and served in a sugar-rim martini glass with a California sparkling wine splash.
Absolutely Ruby Red
Absolut grapefruit vodka is iced in a pint glass with California sparkling wine and fresh grapefruit, cranberry, lemon and lime juices.
Did you know orange squeezing can lead to premature arthritis? Take a break from the traditional orange juice mimosa and try this concoction of chilled California sparkling wine, served in a flute glass with a pomegranate liqueur float.
Writer Earnest Hemmingway once scribbled on the wall of a bar in Havana about his love of this traditional Cuban drink. World Famous’ version uses Matusalem Platino, a premium Cuban rum, key lime juice, cane sugar, fresh mint and a splash of soda.
Skyy Bloody Caliente
This bold bloody is made with World Famous’ secret 1970 mix, atomic horseradish and Skyy Vodka.
World Famous Caribbean Mai Tai
This local take on the Caribbean-inspired masterpiece (which was actually created in Northern California) is made from Mount Gay Eclipse and Myer’s rums, with coconut and tropical juices.
Pisco, a spirit made from Muscat grapes that is famous in the coastal towns of Chile and Peru, is mixed with orange juice and almond liqueur, served over rocks with a squeeze of lime and a cherry.