5 Great Drinks for National Rum Day

5 Great Drinks for National Rum Day

Aug 16, 2013 | No Comments

 

“It gave me a strange feeling, and the rest of that night I didn’t say much, but merely sat there and drank, trying to decide if I was getting older and wiser, or just plain old.” ― Hunter S. Thompson, The Rum Diary

Rum is often the forgotten spirit. It does not carry the mystique of tequila, the executive-class nature of scotch or the ubiquity of vodka and gin. But rum is a fantastic and complex drink. It was the first distilled by plantation slaves in the 17th century, fuel for many a British navy-men and pirate alike, and the foundation of America’s tiki culture during the 1940s. Today is National Rum Day and we tip our had to this cane-sugar based tipple. Here are five great drinks from around the web to celebrate National Rum Day:

 

The Daiquiri on Esquire

Basically a rum sour, the Daiquiri has been bastardized over the years will all abominations of grocery store mixes and corn-syrup laced flavorings. But the classic – rum, sugar and lemon juice served up – is a thing of beauty.

Get the Daiquiri recipe.

 

Cuba Libre on Serious Eats

Another rum classic that has been relished to spring breakers and college parties, the Cuba Libre is far more balanced than the frat-party rum-and-cokes I grew up on.

Get the Cuba Libre Recipe.

 

The Test Pilot on Cocktail Chronicles

Let’s get Tiki for a minute. The beauty of a tiki drink is in its balance. While most people think of frozen daiquiris and piña coladas, true tiki drinks are a balance of sweet, sour, and bitter… often with a heavy hand of booze. My favorite is the Test Pilot, a blend of two rums, orange liqueur and falernum for sweetness, bitters and pernod for a savory quality, and lime juice to cut through the sugar. Done right, it is a thing of beauty. These are all bottles well worth having in your home so stock up and get tiki!

Get the Planter’s Punch recipe.

 

Planter’s Punch on Professor Cocktail

Not quite tiki, and more complex than a Daiquiri, Planter’s Punch is one of the oldest rum drinks around. There are dozens of recipes for this blend of juices, sugars, and rums but my favorite is this recipe from Professor Cocktail. The ingredient list is manageable as long as you have Grenadine in the house. If you don’t, get make your own with this recipe or do what i do. Use pomegranate juice and add a bit more sugar to taste.

Get the Mai Tai recipe.

 

Trader Vic’s Mai Tai on Post Prohibition

I can think of no other drink that embodies the Tiki more than the Mai Tai. Both Don the Beachcomber and Trader Vic – the two men responsible for America’s Tiki craze – claim credit for inventing the drink and countless others have gone on to create poolside variations. I prefer Trader Vic’s version… a blend of rums and lime juice sweetened with some Orgeat and Cointreau. Again, nothing fussy, but damn fine. I’m a lazy (and cheap) mixologist so I make my Orgeat from Almond Milk already laying around the house (here’s how).

Get Mai Tai the recipe.

Video: Resurrecting Southern Apple Varieties

Video: Resurrecting Southern Apple Varieties

Aug 10, 2013 | No Comments

One facet of the cider world that always amazes me is how a drink with such deep, America roots can also feel so contemporary and “of the moment.” This time of year, as the annual apple harvest looms on the horizon and America’s seasonal interest in cider reawakens, my interests turn to the long-forgotten apples at the heart of cider-production. As a Northerner/Yankee/New Englander, my interests always turn to classics such as Newtown Pippins, Stayman Winesaps and lucrative Harrison apples. And then I remember that in the south, and in the west, there is an entirely different apple lexicon.

The video above is in no way new but it is in every way relevant and a great insite into the concern and preservation for classic, southern apples. Look out for cameos from Diane Flynt from Foggy Ridge Cider as well as a stray bottle from Albemarle Ciderworks in the mix.

The Best Beers from Belgium Comes to Cooperstown 2013

The Best Beers from Belgium Comes to Cooperstown 2013

Aug 6, 2013 | No Comments

The craft beer community descended on Cooperstown, New York this past weekend for Brewery Ommegang’s annual Belgium Comes to Cooperstown festival. Now in its eleventh year, this Belgian-inspired beer event is revered as one of the best in the country.