Two Thank you letters and a team shirt! MAHALO

I love to open mail at work. If It's a bill I hand it off to someone else. If it's a check for a deposit then I'm doing my job. If it's a thank you letter I post it for the staff to see! I love to get thank you letters. Two in the same day is very cool!  The first one came with a team shirt in my size, from Cal Volleyball. The second is from The National Association of Catering Executives for a fundraiser.

What to do with all the empty Skyy Bottles? - Tiki Torchs - Wine Bottle Torch - SKYY VODKA

Recycled Wine Bottle Torch

Note the blue bottles. Skyy Vodka bottle work great!  FYI -Tiki's Grill & Bar serves SKYY Vodka as it's well Vodka!

Here is a great blog post from Erik Anderson:

Design for Life: Recycled Wine Bottle Torch Or Skyy Tiki Torch

08.09. 09

In any of my design work, whether for clients or for myself, I’m most proud when I can find a solution that’s highly creative and effective while keeping resources to a minimum. This is totally inexpensive (around $5-bucks). Plus it’s a great way to recycle a bottle.


It’s been a record year for mosquitoes here in Indianapolis, Indiana and I’d been wanting to add some Tiki-esque torches to the patio to combat the little buggers, as well as provide some ambiance in the evenings. After searching the world over to find a torch that was affordable and atypical I came to the conclusion that unless I wanted wicker or bamboo, I would need to become a bit more resourceful. A glance into my recycling bin and an aimless stroll through the local hardware store provided me with this clear solution.

Recycled Wine Bottle Torch

  1. Empty Wine Bottle (You can use any bottle you like as long as it’s glass and the neck is 1” in diameter. Be clever!)
  2. Teflon Tape 1/2”
  3. Copper Top Plate Connector (threaded for 3/8”-16 thread rod)
  4. 1” Split Ring Hanger (threaded for 3/8”-16 thread rod)
  5. 1/2” x 3/8” Copper Coupling
  6. 1/2” Copper Cap
  7. Two Hex Nuts (threaded for 3/8”-16 thread rod)
  8. Two #10 x 1” Zinc Plated Wood Screws (if your mounting it to wood)
  9. 3/8”-16 Zinc Plated Threaded Rod (I bought a 3’ rod and cut it down to 8, 4-1/2” rods with a hacksaw.)
  10. Tiki Replacement Wick
  11. Torch Fuel (For safety reasons, only use fuel made specifically for outdoor torches. i.e. Tiki brand)

Helpful Tools: Channellocks, adjustable wrench, hacksaw, power screwdriver, and a funnel. For those having trouble locating the top plate connectors they can be found online: Copper, Galvanized, Stainless Steel, Iron

Safety Note: This is for outdoor use only. Tiki brand recommends that the wick never be set higher than 1/4-inch, and I recommend that you exercise the same discretion and common sense that you would with any small open flame. Never leave your torches unattended.

Building Instructions

The Hanger

Recycled Wine Bottle Torch

  1. Decide where you want to mount your Recycled Bottle Torch. Position the Top Plate Connector on your mounting surface and mark the holes for where the screws will go. It’s easier to keep it level if you pre-drill your screws first.
  2. Once you have your Top Plate Connector mounted you can screw in the 3/8”-16 Rod until it stops. Channellocks are helpful for this part.
  3. Thread the two Hex Nuts on to the Rod and tighten one all the way down at the point where the Rod meets the Top Connector Plate. Leave the other Hex Nut at the front end so it can be used to secure the Split Ring Hanger.
  4. Thread on the Split Ring Hanger just enough so that the Rod is flush with the inside of the ring. Turn the 2nd Hex Nut counter-clockwise to snug it up against the Split Ring Hanger.

If you’d prefer your hardware to keep its shiny, unweathered look you can always give it several coats of clear polyurethane before you mount it. Personally, I think a weathered patina will add a nice element of character.

The Bottle

Recycled Wine Bottle Torch

  1. Carefully and tightly wrap the 1/2” end of the Coupling with your Teflon Tape. You’ll want to keep each wrap nice and clean so that it creates a smooth, even surface. Continue building up the tape until it fits very snugly into the opening of your bottle. You obviously don’t want it to fall in.
  2. Insert the Wick into the Coupling until it sticks out about 1/4-inch or less. The Tiki brand replacement wicks are about 3/8” in diameter so they fit really well. Once they absorb the torch oil they’re even tighter.
  3. Unscrew the Split Ring Hanger on one side and position the bottle neck into the ring.
  4. Flip the front half of the ring back into place and tighten down the Hanger evenly on both sides. You may need to loosen the other side to make sure both sides are an even tightness. (Don’t over tighten the Hanger. You don’t want to break the glass.)
  5. Use a funnel to fill the bottle with your favorite torch oil. (I use Tiki’s BiteFighter because it’s clear and seems to do a good job of keeping the mosquitoes away.)
  6. Insert the Coupling & Wick into the top of the bottle and twist it snugly into place. Give the Wick a few minutes to absorb the oil before you try to light it.
  7. I typically just blow my torches out. Use the Copper Cap to keep the Wick dry when you’re not using your torch.

Good Luck!


Recycled Wine Bottle Torch

The data and information contained herein are being furnished for informational purposes only. Upon the express condition that each user shall make his or her own assessment of appropriate use and appropriate shipping, transfer, and storage of materials and procedures for this Recycled Bottle Torch. Erik Anderson and Gerardot & Company discaim any liability for damage or injury which may result from the use of the above data, or it’s use for any specific purpose, even if that purpose is known to Erik Anderson and Gerardot & Company.

St. Augustine Chuch in Waikiki Founded in 1854

I'm outside the church selling $5 Lau Lau plate lunches that come with a bottle of water. What a deal! This is a fundraiser for the Halau to travel to Belguim and Rome. They are traveling with the Bishop and dancing hula at each of the stops to honor the cannonization of Father Damien.

Sent from my iPhone

Hala 9-11 remembrance photo - Rest in Peace - Aloha

This morning was I walking on the beach and under a Hala Tree was the yellow phalanges (fruit parts or "keys"). As soon as I saw them I thought the those who were killed on 9-11. I gathered a few up and lined them up for a photo. I remember stories about the hala lei, made from the keys, it can be connected to death, and eternal good-bye or good luck depending on other factors. For this photo it is the eternal good-bye.  Aloha

Hawaiian Name: hala, pu hala, lauhala  
Vernacular Name: Screw pine
Family: Pandanaceae Species: Pandanus tectorius

Save the Date - Restaurant Week Hawaii November 16-22 2009


Restaurant Week Hawaii–Showcasing Hawaii's restaurants and supporting the Culinary Institute of the Pacific at Diamond Head

The second annual Restaurant Week Hawaii will be a seven day celebration of the cuisine scene in Hawaii. From fine dining to fast-food, participating restaurants will feature special menu items, promotions and discounts. Diners can sample Hawaii's newest restaurants, dine at old favorites and taste a variety of exceptional dishes now being prepared by Hawaii's chefs using locally grown produce. Restaurant Week is a reminder that Hawaii is a culinary destination with top chefs, farm to table dining, wonderful wine and a lot more to discover and explore.

A portion of the proceeds from Restaurant Week Hawaii will support the Culinary Institute of the Pacific at Diamond Head.

Realizing a vision to build a world-class institute that sets a new standard for culinary education,
Creating a strong and viable workforce for Hawaii's future,
Blending state-of-the art technology with cuisines from the east and west,
Combining leading edge business models with lessons from those who came before us,
Opening doors and changing lives of students who dream,
This is the Culinary Institute of the Pacific at Diamond Head.

A special event to support the Culinary Institute of the Pacific at Diamond Head


Video of Lei Ho'okahi..Halau 'O Na Pua Kukui..Hula as Gift for Corey & Tiff's Wedding

This weekend was filled with a lot of aloha. Family parties and dinners, wedding and birthdays. Lisa and I attended Corey & Tiff's Wedding in Waikiki. Corey is a member of Halau 'O Na Pua Kukui  their Kumu  is "Uncle Ed" Collier and Tiff is a dance instructor for our niece. Lisa, my wife is the cute one, second to the end in the back line, wearing a silver gray dress.

This is a video of the men and women of Halau 'O Na Pua Kukui as they dance a hula as a gift for the bride and groom.

The song and hula Lei Ho'okahi talk about  "the descriptive use of Lehua blossom and Fern tree, are symbols of two lovers being united as one. "