Just 1 Bottle: 14 Cocktails to Make With Rum and a Trip to the Grocery Store
Whether you have a well-stocked home bar or a leftover-bottles-on-the-mantel setup, the last thing you feel like doing on a hot day is traipsing to the liquor store to buy some obscure liqueur that you're missing. You want a drink—ASAP—and the only stop you've planned is to pause at the grocery store to pick up something to throw on the grill. We're with you, and here's what we're drinking: these 15 cocktails call for rum and nothing else you can't grab when you're buying groceries.
Grilled Pineapple Mojito
Pineapple takes a spin on the grill for this drink—you were planning on grilling anyway, right? The sweet, richly-flavored fruit, once cooled, is easy to muddle with fresh mint and lime for a luscious rendition of the classic mojito.
Raspberries are pretty cocktail-friendly, with their tart, tangy flavor and rosy color. They don't need much in the way of fancy additions, but spicy ginger beer makes an excellent partner in this rum drink. Agave syrup adds a little sweetness, and fresh lemon balances things out.
Thai Basil Daiquiri
You might not have access to liquid nitrogen or a centrifuge at home, but you can still make this cool Thai basil cocktail adapted from Dave Arnold's method at Booker + Dax in NYC. You'll whir all the ingredients together in a blender, then shake it up with ice to chill.
Hibiscus Rum Cooler
This rosy pitcher drink get its tartness from fresh lemon and tangy hibiscus tea. (We used Tazo 'Passion', but you can also make your own with dried hibiscus flowers.) Mint adds freshness to balance the drink, and makes for a pretty garnish. You can prep this a few hours before your rum-loving guests arrive.
If you went a little overboard at the farmers' market, you're in luck, because stone fruit is excellent in cocktails. Here, ripe plums or pluots contribute tangy flavor to a rum drink with just a hint of mint. Get your muscles ready: this one needs quite a bit of shaking.
Kale Ginger Daiquiri
Vegetables in cocktails? Don't knock it till you've tried it. Paring the daiquiri down to a simpler state—the core is white rum and fresh lime juice—and adding a shot of kale juice and a spicy ginger syrup makes for a complex, intriguingly earthy version of the classic.
Sure, you've had plenty of rum-and-Cokes, and they were probably fine, but fresh lime makes a huge difference in this simple combo. Want to get a bit more complex flavor? After juicing the lime, try muddling the spent shell a bit in the bottom of the glass to get a bit of its flavorful oils in the mix.
Dress up your mojito with a hint of fruit and spice: here, tart cranberries and a cinnamon-infused syrup. The fruit adds brightness and the cinnamon flavor layers in nicely with the rum, but feel free to try this template with berries and other spices, too, keeping in mind that you might need to dial down the sugar level a bit if your fruit is sweet.
Blink and you'll miss it, but for a moment, peaches and cherries are both in season. They come together here, wrapped in rum and Demerara syrup. Fresh lime pulls the drink together nicely.
Dark & Stormy
According to the trademark, a true Dark 'n' Stormy should be made with just ginger beer and Gosling's Black Seal Rum. But we love the version served at New York's Spotted Pig, where the sweetness is cut with a generous splash of fresh lime.
Late Spring Dark & Stormy
A little rhubarb won't add much flavor to a cocktail—and plenty of the recipes you see online taste only faintly rhubarby. But if you use enough of the rosy red stalks, you can punch up a classic highball like the Dark & Stormy with a delicious fruity tang.
Ginger, lime, rum...sound familiar? This potent spin on the D 'n' S gets a pop of heat from fresh ginger and a little richness and savory flavor from dark beer. If you have two types of rum on hand, use both for added flavor complexity, but life will go on if you've only got one bottle.
Planning ahead? Consider these drinks, which don't take much more effort but do require a little time.
Mix up a cold-processed shrub over the weekend (after you've stocked up on berries, peaches, or whatever fruit strikes your fancy), and you'll be ready to make this super-easy drink all week long. If you have aged rum around, this is a great way to use it—we especially love this shrub with older expressions of Appleton or El Dorado 12, or Smith + Cross, if we're feeling the funk.
Pineapple Rum Punch
This tropical punch is worth a little scheming in advance: it gets its flavor and fragrance from ripe, fresh pineapple, which soaks in a simple syrup for a couple of hours (or overnight, if that's easier.) Aged rum adds caramel richness, offset by tart lemon and sparkling water. If you prefer your drinks very tart, add additional fresh lemon juice, 2 tablespoons at a time, to your taste.