Top 5 rum cocktail recipes

We are feeling just terrible about missing National Rum Day last Monday (we were a little distracted by it also being National Bratwurst Day, and we don't recommend mixing the two) but you don't really need an excuse to drink a beautiful cocktail. With the summer winding down, and rum being the foremost fruity party spirit, there's still time to pack in as many rum-soaked moments as possible. Here is our list of the Top 5 rum cocktails.

1. Classic Daiquiri, from Chow
1 1/2 ounces light rum
1 ounce fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon simple syrup or superfine sugar

Shake all ingredients well with ice, then strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

2. Benton Park Swizzle, from Taste Bar by Niche
2 oz. gold rum
1 oz. simple syrup (1:1)
3/4 oz. fresh lime juice
8-10 fresh mint leaves
1/2 oz. Fernet Branca
Crushed ice

Muddle mint, lime juice and simple syrup in the bottom of a mixing tin, then add rum. Pour into a glass and fill 3/4 full with crushed ice. Swizzle, or stir, for 30 seconds. Fill glass with crushed ice and float Fernet Branca on top. Garnish with a fresh mint leaf.

3. Piña Colada, from Imbibe Magazine
2 oz. light rum 2 oz. coconut cream 2 oz. pineapple juice (fresh, if possible) 1/2 cup crushed ice

Blend all ingredients until smooth, strain into a chilled collins glass and garnish with a pineapple wedge.

4. Planter's Punch
*according to The Savoy Cocktail Book "This drink is greatly favored by Planters, particularly in Jamaica, where rum is good and cheap.
1 dash of lemon juice
half orange juice
half rum
shake well and strain into a cocktail glass

Imbibe had this variation and encourages improvisation:
1 1/2 oz. dark rum
2 oz. seasonal juices (passionfruit, orange, pineapple, etc.)
1/2 oz. lime juice
1/4 oz. simple syrup
Ice cubes

Shake dark rum, juices, and syrup with ice. Strain into ice-filled glass and garnish with a float of Demerara rum plus fresh, seasonal fruit.

5. Puerto Rican Rum Punch, from Food and Wine
This recipe is for a whole pitcher to share--double or triple it for a party
2/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/3 cup superfine sugar
1 cup gold rum (8 oz)
1/4 cup orange liqueur (2 oz)
1/4 cup grenadine (2 oz)
One 750-ml bottle sparkling wine, such as Spanish cava, chilled
Fresh pineapple chunks, for garnish

In a large pitcher, combine the lime juice and sugar and stir briskly until the sugar is dissolved. Add the rum, orange liqueur, and grenadine and chill the rum mixture for about 1 hour. Just before serving, add the sparkling wine and pineapple chunks and serve in punch glasses.
*The rum mixture can be refrigerated overnight. Stir in the sparkling wine and pineapple chunks just before serving.

*Special Bonus*
This is said to be the original Mai Tai recipe from Trader Vic's circa 1944. You may have to improvise a little.

2 oz. of 17-year old J. Wray & Nephew Rum over shaved ice.
Add juice from one fresh lime.
1/2 oz. Holland DeKuyper Orange Curacao.
1/4 oz. Trader Vic's Rock Candy Syrup.
1/2 oz. French Garier Orgeat Syrup
Shake vigorously.
Add a sprig of fresh mint

Happy belated Rum Day.

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