Rum Cocktail

Hemingway Daiquiri

A few years ago my husband and I decided to spend Christmas in Key West. It was the best decision we ever made. It was the perfect trip. We smoked cigars by the water. We spent an entire afternoon fishing. We watched sunset after sunset. 

Key West has become our happy place. Reminiscing about that week has almost become a form of meditation. We take deep breaths and recall how we impressed our boat captain with our mad fishing skills. We think back to sunsets in Mallory Square, the hilarious Cat Guy, the sound of the waves crashing outside our hotel room. 

If Key West is our happy place, the Hemingway Daiquiri is our happy drink. Less sweet than the traditional daiquiri, the Hemingway Daiquiri substitutes the simple syrup with grapefruit juice and maraschino liqueur. It was invented at the El Floridita Bar in Havana, Cuba. And named after the bar’s most famous patron.

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2 ounces light Rum
.5 ounce Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur .75 ounce Grapefruit Juice .5 ounce Lime Juice
Shake with ice.
Strain into a cocktail glass.

Whiskey and I are on a Break

Whiskey and I are on a Break

This post is sponsored by Bacardi Añejo Cuatro. The thoughts and recipe are my own.

I’ve always thought of myself as a whiskey girl. I've never been shy about it. But I feel that it's time for me to start seeing other spirits. And I’m starting with Rum.

I admit that I've never truly given rum a chance. In the past, whenever I’ve thought to make a rum cocktail my mind immediately went to a mojito or daiquiri. But I’ve decided that if I’m going to truly accept Rum into my life, I need to break with tradition. 

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The 5 Rules of Punch

A sample of Cruzan Tropical Fruit Rum was provided for this post.

Invented in the 17th century by sailors for the British East India Company, the word punch is derived from the Sanskrit word “panch,” meaning “five.” A traditional punch is made with just five ingredients - alcohol, water, sugar, citrus, and spice. Nowadays, when you think of punch you probably think fruity and sweet. But there's more to punch than fruit juice and sugar. We're taking a look at the 5 rules to making a proper punch.

The 5 Rules of Punch

  1. Always use fresh fruits! Put down that can and start chopping. Fresh fruits provide brighter flavor and delicious all-natural sugars.
  2. Too much dilution can kill even the best recipe. When serving punch, use larger blocks of ice. If using a punch bowl to serve, try freezing your ice in a large Tupperware container with fruits. Once frozen, add the ice to punch bowl and top with your punch. 
  3. Punch is best served chilled. Chill your punch at least 4 to 6 hours (without ice) before serving. 
  4. Get creative. Experiment with different spirits and fruits. Try adding spices - like nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves - or teas to your punch. Have fun with it!
  5. Share with friends. The beauty of punch is that it's communal. It's meant to be shared and enjoyed by many. 

I decided to get a little crafty with my own punch recipe. I incorporated tea by infusing white tea in dry vermouth. To add citrus, I made an oleo saccharum in lieu of using traditional juice. The combination created a refreshing punch bursting with citrus flavor.  For my spirit, I used Cruzan Tropical Fruit Rum. Because this rum has a touch of sweetness, I held back on the amount of syrup I used in my punch.

Oleo-Saccharum - Oleo means oil, saccharum means sugar. Add the peels of citrus to sugar until the citrus oils emerge creating an oily syrup.

Orange-Lime Oleo-Saccharum

1/2 cup white sugar

4 limes

4 oranges


Remove zest of limes and oranges, careful to avoid the white pith.

In an airtight container, muddle peels with sugar.

Allow to sit for 24 hours. 

Strain oil into an airtight container.

Press peels to release more oil before discarding.


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1 Part Cruzan Tropical Fruit Rum

3/4 part White Tea infused Dry Vermouth

1/4 part Orange-Lime Oleo Saccharum


To make tea-infused vermouth, soak 2 tea bags for every 6 ounces of dry vermouth overnight. Strain through a wire mesh strainer to remove any tea particles.

Large batch: Combine ingredients and allow to chill. Add to pitcher or bowl and stir with ice.

Single Serving: Combine ingredients in a shaker. Shake with ice. Strain into a chilled coupe glass.

Celebrating Rum

Ah, rum! That captivating spirit that launched a thousand ships throughout history in pursuit of its glory. A by-product of sugar cane, there are few rules when it comes to rum. While most would associate rum with the Caribbean, the production of rum is actually a world wide phenomenon. There was even a time that rum reigned in the United States. During the 17th and 18th-century sugar cane was imported from the Caribbeans for the purpose of rum production in Northern America. New England became the rum capital of America. 


There are many variations of rum. Here are a few: 

LIGHT RUM - also referred to as "silver" or "white", light rum is clear in color and tends to have a milder, sweeter flavor.

DARK RUM - dark in color, dark rums are generally aged in charred barrels and tend to have a spicier flavor.  However, some dark rums are made with the addition of caramel to achieve color.

OVERPROOF RUM - the standard rum has an ABV of 40% or 80 proof. Overproof rums have a much higher alcohol content, such as Bacardi 151 that has a proof of (you guessed it) 151 or 75.5% ABV. 

SOLERA RUM - a process in which younger rums are blended with older aged rums. Solera rums have been known to cause controversy with some distilleries advertising their rum with the age of the oldest rum included in the blend. (Ex. a rum advertised as 30yrs but is really a blend that may include a rum as young as 6 years.)


Now that we've covered some of the types rums there are, here are a few of my favorite rum recipes:



Dating back to the 1930s, this cocktail follows the "old fashioned" formula of spirit, sugar, and bitters.



If you know any "tiki" drink, you must know the Mai Tai. Jamaican rum shines in this (surprisingly) refreshing but boozy cocktail.



A healthy dose of Aged Rum cooled down with pineapple juiced and topped with club soda.



An old fashioned style cocktail that features aged rum and substitutes traditional sugar with Velvet Falernum.



A refreshing mix of rum, lemon, and mint.

Tomojito Sour

I'll be honest I'm not a fan of summer. It's hot, sticky, and I hate to sweat. But the great thing about summer is all the wonderful produce available. Amazing fruits and vegetables to brighten up your cocktails and inspire creativity. 

A summer cocktail should be light, refreshing, and easy to drink. When I set out to make my summer cocktail I knew I wanted to make a shrub, a vinegar based syrup. I love shrubs because they can deliver a punch of flavor in a small dose. I decided to make my shrub using some colorful heirloom cherry tomatoes and fresh mint. The combination has a pleasant taste that keeps you coming back for more.

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for an 8 ounce shrub

12 mint leaves

4 ounces Heirloom Cherry Tomatoes

1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar

1/2 cup Sugar


Combine in air tight jar. 

Shake frequently.

Refrigerate for at least 24 hours before use.

Use within 1 to 2 weeks

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The Tomojito Sour was inspired by the Mojito but takes things a step further with the addition of heirloom tomatoes and yellow chartreuse. Combined with rum, lime, and mint it makes for a cocktail that is both delicate and delightful.



1.5 ounces White Rum

.75 ounce Tomato Mint Shrub

.5 ounces lime juice

bar spoon of Yellow Chartreuse


Combine ingredients in a shaker.

Shake with ice.

Double strain into a glass filled with crushed ice.

Optional: top with club soda

Garnish with a cherry tomato and mint.


Spytail Rum

The following post is sponsored by Spytail Rum

This spring I had the pleasure of working with a rum like no other. Based on a 19th-century recipe, Spytail Rum is made with fresh ginger root and spices in Cognac, France. Ginger is one of my favorite flavors to work with, I was excited to give Spytail a try. I became even more excited when I saw the rum's nautical themed packaging and unique round bottle. I was not disappointed.

The robust ginger flavor plays well in a number of cocktails, while also enjoyable on its own or on the rocks. Spytail's spice elevates a rum & coke and was simply refreshing combined with ginger beer. But my favorite Spytail cocktail would have to be the Spytail Daquiri. A delicious combination of Spytail rum, grapefruit, lime, and honey. 

Spytail™ Buck

2 ounces Spytail™ Rum
1 ounce lime juice
3 ounces ginger beer

Combine lime juice and Spytail™ Rum. Add ice. Top with ginger beer.


Spytail Daiquiri

Spytail™ Daiquiri

1.5 ounces Spytail™ Rum
3/4 ounces grapefruit juice
1/2 ounce lime juice
1 ounce honey syrup

Shake. Strain. Serve up or on the rocks with lime garnish.

Raise a Glass to Spring: 7 Cocktails for Warmer Weather

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Spring can not get here quick enough. To give Mother Nature a little push, I decided to focus on light and herbaceous cocktails for spring. 

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Back to the Future Cocktail

Back to the Future Cocktail

This Wednesday marks one of the most iconic days in the life of the 80s child. On October 21st, 2015 a young Marty McFly traveled into the future to save the fate of his family. He flew into a world of hoverboards, inside-out pants, and a Chicago Cubs World Series sweep.

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Hot Buttered Cider Recipe

Hot Buttered Cider Recipe

A Hot Buttered Rum recipe made all the more better with the addition of Hot Cider. A delicious Hot Apple Cider recipe perfect for those cold winter days.

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