The Rum & Coke is timeless, simple and delicious. But with just two ingredients, there’s not much room for variation—or so we thought before speaking to Jesse Vida, head bartender at Blacktail in New York City. There, Vida elevates the lazy man’s go-to drink by replacing the usual Coke with a mix of cola syrup and Champagne. The resulting cocktail is straight up brilliant—an elegant mix of sweet, bitter and spritz. Upon first sip, we too were inspired to create our own takes on the Cuba Libre. Here, Vida’s revolutionary recipe plus two more new takes on the Rum & Coke.
3 New Ways to Make a Rum & Coke
Created by Jesse Vida, this regal take on a Rum & Coke pairs Bacardi’s upper echelon spirit—Facundo Neo white rum—with a cola simple syrup. Cane sugar sweetness is accented with a bitter Fernet Branca edge, then the drink is topped with Champagne for some toasty effervescence. Great for when you’re feeling fancy, but not too fancy.
The next time you find yourself reminiscing about the good old days at the soda fountain, satisfy your ice cream float cravings with this grown-up take on the classic dessert. It combines the nostalgic duo of cola and vanilla ice cream with the tropical booziness of white rum. A few dashes of Angostura bitters temper the drink’s sweetness, while adding a sarsaparilla funk. Instead of using the usual corn syrup-sweetened cola, we suggest malty, sugarcane-based Mexican Coke.
Vanilla Ice Cream
Spiking Coke Slurpees with a generous pour of rum to make an instant frozen Rum and Coke is a hallowed summer tradition. Inspired by this convenience store concoction, we created an easy-to-make home version that cuts out the middleman. All you need is a blender, ice, Coca-Cola and rum—plus some Cherry Heering (because Cherry Coke). Now all you have to do is find a copy of Freedom Rock and crank it up.
White & Dark Rum