Better Know a Classic: Rum Swizzle

Rum Swizzle

2 oz Dark Rum [Plantation]
2 oz Gold Rum [Short Path]
2 oz Pineapple juice
1.75 oz Orange juice
1 oz Triple Sec [Short Path]
1 oz Falernum [house]
.75 oz Lemon Juice
few dashes angostura bitters

Combine ingredients in a glass and stir.  Fill a Collins glass 2/3 of the way with crushed ice, and add contents of mixing glass.  Swizzled or stir vigorously until a frost forms on the outside of the glass.  Top with more crushed ice.  Garnish with orange slice and mint (cuz I had some in my yard).  Add any kitschy swizzle sticks you may have and a straw.

* adapted from The Swizzle Inn website

Sorry (not sorry) for the lack of posts lately, but I have a valid excuse.  I was on vacation! A cruise to Bermuda to be exact.  While aboard the ship and on shore, I had many a tropical drink.  However, the one I’m spotlighting in this week’s entry into the Better Know a Classic series is Bermuda’s other famous drink – the Rum Swizzle.

You’re probably more familiar with the Dark and Stormy, Bermuda’s other contribution to drinking world.  And that may very well get its own entry one day, but today we’re talking swizzle.  The swizzle is actually an entire category of drinks.  Normally a potent mixure of booze and fruit juice served over crushed ice. What really makes them special is instead of shaking everything together, you twist a swizzle stick (a long stick with pronged ends going out in multiple directions) back and forth in the drink to mix it all together.  You know you’re done when a nice frost collects on the outside of the glass.  In fact, I participated in a Mixology Monday where swizzles were the theme.  That was my first proper introduction to this family of drinks.  I guess my trip to Bermuda is a different kind of proper introduction.

Swizzle at Elbow Beach

Being Bermuda’s national drink, there’s plenty of rum in here.  Luckily, lots of fresh juice balances it all out.  There are slight variations depending on where you go, but the basic template is black and gold rum (Goslings is traditional, natch), pineapple juice, orange juice, and some sort of sweetener (grenadine, simple syrup, or even falernum can fill this role).  I had some with grenadine and some without, and both were delicious.   Even better, it makes a great pitcher drink, and one of the best I had was at Elbow Beach.  I grabbed a pitcher from the beach bar and walked it down to our chairs in the sand.  This is how they are meant to be consumed. My only regret is not making it to the Swizzle Inn, which popularized the Rum Swizzle.  Luckily, they have their recipe on their website, which is what I made today.


Regardless of which version you version you choose, you’re in for one refreshing drink.  The ice and fruit juices are the perfect defense against the hot Atlantic sun.  The two different kinds of rums add some complexity to the drink, along with a nice kick of booze.  As the Swizzle Inn saying goes…Swizzle Inn…Swagger Out!  This drink will definitely sneak up on you.  But there’s nothing wrong with that.  Sipping on one of these with your toes in pink sand, looking out over the turquoise ocean is basically like reaching peak Bermuda.

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