The cocktail is an art form that peaked in the middle of the 20th century and has been in rapid decline since. As a young lad, I was schooled in the fine art of cocktailing by my father and grandfathers, I learned many valuable lessons that I plan to pass on. I also want to resurrect some of the old classics that vastly surpass the sugary & fruity concoctions made today with their simplicity, elegance and bold flavors. Most of the time I will focus on one drink, and to provide, at least in my opinion, the definitive recipe, but hope to expand to other related topics as I see fit. Please mix yourself a cocktail, read, drink, and enjoy!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Dark ‘n’ Stormy

For our next rum based dream we head north to the bucolic island of Bermuda. Known as Bermuda’s national drink, the Dark ‘n’ Stormy is very unique in that it is a registered trademark in not only one, but two countries, Bermuda and the United States. In other words, legally there is a specific way this drink has to be made.

First a little history, this drink started to appear in Bermuda shortly after World War I. The drink gets its name from its presentation. When served, the rum floats on top of the ginger beer giving the impression of a storm rolling in. It is a very visually appealing drink when served this way, but it needs to be stirred for the flavors to blend and be truly enjoyable.

Back to our little legal dilemma. The trademark, held by Goslings Rum, dictates that the drink must be made using their Black Seal Rum and ginger beer. Although Goslings has recently released their own brand of ginger beer the trademark does not specify a brand of ginger beer. Fortunately for my vast legal team and I, we are not going to break any international laws with this variation. I am, however, going to commit the eighth deadly sin by my choice of ginger beer. Traditionally Barritt's has been the mixer of choice in this drink and many would argue that its brand is equally as important in this drink as Goslings. I am going to risk an international incident and recommend another. Due to the fact that I have been unable to locate Barritt’s, save for shipping in a case from the east coast, which I am still tempted to do. I have been using Bundaberg ginger beer, which to really complicate things and ruffle some feathers comes from Australia and is produced by a company that also makes rum!

On to construction. As this is a great warm weather, having a great time drink, I like to make them big, it saves me from having to remove myself from the comforts of the back porch too often and keeps the party going. A sixteen-ounce glass is necessary for these proportions, but adjust to fit the needs of your glassware and liver. Fill the man-sized behemoth of a vessel with ice, add ½ ounce of fresh squeezed lime juice (please do not report me to Gosling’s legal team), pour in 5 ounces of ginger beer. Next slowly pour in 3 ounces of Gosling’s Black Seal Rum (hopefully this will appease the aforementioned legal team) so that it floats on top of the ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime, and serve with a stir stick. For the first round or two your guests will be impressed by the look of the drink, after three of four rounds serve them premixed and get ready to experience the storm!

Dark ‘n’ Stormy
3 oz gosling’s black seal rum
5 oz ginger beer
½ oz lime juice
In a large ice filled glass add lime juice and ginger beer. Float rum on top and serve with a lime wedge and a stir stick.

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