Tom Hudson

South Florida may not have the valleys and vineyards of Napa Valley nor the hollows and oak barrels of Kentucky but the wine and liquor industry is here in its own unique way.  Think mango wine not chardonnay, rum not bourbon and you've got the idea.  

South Floridians can talk about rum the way oenophiles go on about wine. There are the aromas of the rum, the notes and the finish. There may be hints of chocolate, berries or citrus.  For many outside of South Florida rum means one company: Bacardi.  

Wikimedia Commons

If you’re hoping to enjoy a beer on the beach this Fourth of July, you’ll be able to do so in Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood for one day only.

Both cities have announced a one-day exception to their ordinances banning open containers of alcohol on the beach.

The reason for the ban is to keep beach-goers from disrespecting and disrupting the enjoyment of others while visiting the shore, said Fort Lauderdale mayor Jack Seiler. The city lifts the ban for special events.

Florida State Archives

This weekend, a devoted national and international crowd of devoted tiki-philes descends on Fort Lauderdale for The Hukilau. The annual gathering celebrates the music, history, and, of course, cocktails, associated with American midcentury tiki culture.

Blackbird Ordinary

Who's growing cocktails in their gardens? In a manner of speaking, Blackbird Ordinary and Broken Shaker are. The two Miami-Dade bars are growing plants they use to make simple syrups, infusions and garnishes. You can also grow your own "cocktail garden." Amy Stewart, author of The Drunken Botanist, visits Books & Books this Friday, and she'll be giving gardening tips.