Rum hails from the sugar cane-rich tropics, so it makes sense that many rum-based cocktails feature other tropical ingredients. The bright, grassy flavors of rhum agricoles, the potent kick of white rums and the deep molasses sweetness of dark rums all mix well with tropical fruits, herbs and coconuts. Here, our favorite tropical libations to make with rum.
Ever since Americans discovered the magic of sipping a Piña Colada on vacation, the cocktail has become a symbol for escapism—just ask Rupert Holmes. Despite its transformation into a stereotype, the drink still satisfies after all these years. If it’s been a while since you enjoyed the blend of coconut, pineapple and rum, reignite your passion for the cocktail by blending one immediately.
This tall, layered cocktail gets its unique flavor from kiwi, an ingredient rarely included in cocktails. The muddled fruit brings a bright, sweet-sour tang to the drink and compliments the flavors of funky rhum agricole. Mango brandy, pineapple juice and cane syrup round out its tiki profile.
Coconut instantly transforms any cocktail into a tropical masterpiece. While you could (and should occasionally) opt for the full, rich Piña Colada, you can get an equally tropical experience with half the calories by mixing white rum with coconut water, egg white (for texture) and soda.
Sweet-tart passion fruit doesn’t need any help from other fruits to make a cocktail delicious. With the bright acidity of pineapple, the melon-like sweetness of papaya and the creamy body of mango, passion fruit is the tropical ingredient that can do it all. Paired with four ounces of rum (yes, four), and a hit of lemon juice for oomph, the fruit will rock your world.
This grassy cocktail, made with both lemongrass and Thai basil leaves, could beat the tropical heat in Thailand. Minty, citrusy lemongrass adds a cooling flavor to the split base of rhums, while the basil creates a peppery tingle on the lips. Incredibly green and refreshing, the drink will alter your conception of tropical flavors.
This cocktail may be as blue as the waters of the Caribbean, but it’s not nearly as sweet as most blue drinks you come across. Platano purée infuses a banana-like essence and creamy texture without adding too much sweetness. Muddled pineapple and lemon juice keep the flavor bright, while blue curaçao and dark rum make the drink pop with color and deep caramel flavor.
The word guava instantly conjures a tropical getaway in our minds, and it does the same in a glass, especially when mixed with vibrant rhum agricole. The mix of two rhums, guava purée, lime juice and Champagne will whisk you away from wherever you are.