When all this is over, I am really looking forward to a good cocktail. The taste, the flavours, the beautiful presentation, the glass, all of these make a cocktail a real treat. Of course, at the present time there is no where open to enjoy classic cocktails, but you could have a go at making your own, perhaps using recipes from a cocktail book like Classic Cocktails by Octopus Publishing that is currently available from The Works for just £4.
Thinking towards Summer Days, here are 10 of the best tropical cocktails.
1. Pina Colada, Puerto Rico
If you like Pina Colada, like getting caught in the rain. Now probably famous as Del Boy’s cocktail of choice, complete with a little brolly, Pina Colada is a blend of rich coconut cream, white rum and tangy pineapple. The name, in case you were wondering, literally means strained pineapple. Best served shaken with ice.
2. Rum Punch, The Bahamas
A rum punch is definitely one of my favourite holiday cocktails. A Rum punch cocktail recipe usually consists of rum (light, dark, or coconut) and lots of fruit juice including pineapple, orange juice, lemon or lime juice. Grenadine is added for colour. The internet is awash with Rum Punch recipes that may differ in the fruit added.
3. Ti’ Punch, Haiti
Ti’ Punch, which means little punch, is popular all over the Caribbean. It is another rum based cocktail, made with rum agricole, cane syrup, and a slice of lime. Ti’ is pronouced Tee unless you were wandering. Ti’ Punch is often served before a meal in Haiti.
4. Cojito, Cuba
I have read somewhere that the Cojito is a Mojito with a twist, in other words, it’s a dream of a cocktail. It’s main ingredients are lime and mint, and typically rum and coconut, making it a sweet and zesty cocktail. Perfect for hot and sultry nights.
5. Planter’s Punch, Jamaica
The cocktail said to have originated at the Planters Hotel in Charleston, South Carolina, Planter’s punch is an IBA Official Cocktail made of dark rum, several juices, grenadine syrup, sugar syrup, and Angostura bitters. I have classed this as a Jamaican cocktail as the drink uses Jamaican Rum, but really it is a Deep South classic.
6. Banana Daiquiri, Saint Kitts & Nevis
I have to be honest and say I prefer a Strawberry Daiquiri, but a banana version is a tropical classic. Made by blending dark rum, sugar, lime juice, banana liqueur, water, and peeled ripe bananas with ice, the Banana Daiquiri is a thick and creamy treat. Go go all out and serve this in a coconut bowl for a real holiday touch.
7. Flaming Volcano, Hawaii
The Flaming Volcano is a group cocktail totally meant for sharing. The recipe has been around since the 1950s, and contains rum, brandy and pineapple, but the unique selling point of the flaming volcano is that a flammable liquid is added to a cone at the centre of the ‘volcano’ to create a mini eruption, or at least a flame.
8. Michelada, Mexico
Michelada is a hot.hot, hot cocktail, and the only one on this list that contains beer. As well as the beer, the cocktail contains lime juice, sauces and spices, tomato juice, and chilli peppers. It is served over ice, which makes it a great mix of both hot and cold. Definitely one to try this Summer.
9. Caipirinha, Brazil
Caipirinha is Brazil’s most famous drink, and could be said to be its National drink. It is made with cachaça, sugar, and lime. Cachaca is very similar to Rum, and the drink does have similarities with the Mojito. Best served over lots of ice and drank outside, preferably by a pool.
10. Gin & Tonic, India
My personal favourite, although I like my gin even better with lemonade, gin and tonic is listed as an Indian drink as it was first put together as a drink by officers of British East India Company. Best served with ice and a slice, this drink is a timeless classic, and is definitely having a resurgence as gin becomes the stylish drink of choice.
Do you have a favourite cocktail?