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Time for a Drink: Rum and Coconut Water

Let's start the weekend right--with a cocktail recipe from Paul Clarke (The Cocktail Chronicles). Need more than one? That kinda week, eh? Here you go. Cheers!

At last, it's summer. And, it's hot (assuming you don't live near my home in Seattle, where it's finally hitting the mid-70s). In the late afternoon or early evening—when the heat and humidity can suck the chill right out of a beer in three minutes flat—you need a refresher that's a little more durable, yet simple to make. After all, when the heat strikes, the last place you want to be is in the kitchen, muddling up mojitos for a growing crowd of guests.

This drink requires the simplest of preparations, yet it's almost wholly unexpected by the average imbiber. For assertiveness, it uses a good, amber rum—Appleton Extra is a good choice, as are Angostura 1919 and Bacardi 8— and for unparalleled refreshment impact, chilled coconut water.

Once only found in neighborhood bodegas and Asian food stores, this juice from a green coconut—which looks and tastes almost nothing like the more familiar coconut milk—is on the ascendance, and canned or Tetra-packed versions can be found in many natural-food stores and better-stocked groceries. Of course, it can also be found on the inside of green coconuts; if you feel like doing a little work for your drink, pick up one or two (Asian markets are still a good place to find these), make sure it sloshes interestingly, then hack a hole in the top using a large kitchen knife or cleaver (for best results, do this before starting on the rum). You may wish to strain the coconut water—even the canned versions include a bit of pulp—but its light, slightly sweet tanginess pairs beautifully with a rich, vanilla-toned rum.

While the temperature outside continues to hold steady, your internal temperature will take a nice, soft glide down. And if that doesn't say "ultimate summer refresher," I don't know what does.

About the author: Paul Clarke blogs about cocktails at The Cocktail Chronicles and writes regularly on spirits and cocktails for Imbibe magazine. He lives in Seattle, where he works as a writer and magazine editor.

Rum and Coconut Water

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