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Among the distilled spirits, rum has its fair share of fans who enjoy its sweet flavors and versatility as a mixer. For National Rum Day, we take a look at a number of rum brands and cocktails to celebrate the event properly.

National Rum Day, as with many holidays of this sort, has origins that are hard to pin down. However, what we can say is that rum has seen major development over the centuries. Essentially, rum is fermented sugarcane juice or molasses that is later aged in pot stills, column stills, and oak barrels depending on the rum category.

Those categories include light rum, which is typically aged and filtered until it is clear. This expression is used for mixing primarily in cocktails like the Mojito. Golden or amber rums are either sipped neat, on the rocks or as a base for a cocktail. Dark rums are also consumed similar to golden rums, and also used in cooking. There are also overproof rums that form the base of many Tiki drinks and other cocktails, and also premium rums made for sipping or served over ice similar to whiskey and beyond.

Rum is a staple in every sugarcane-producing region which includes the Caribbean, the Philippines, Central America, and portions of the United States. Rum does have a checkered past as production of sugarcane often came at the expense of backbreaking labor performed by enslaved people and the spirit’s production kept that particular venture well-funded.

Today, rum is a bar staple enjoyed in classics like the Cuba Libre, the Daiquiri, the Dark and Stormy, and Rum Punch among others. Barbados is considered the birthplace of rum as we know it in modern times, although versions of drinks using fermented sugars date back to the Third Century.

For National Rum Day, we have a grouping of rum-based cocktails, followed by a selection of rum bottles to seek on your journey. As always, the selections below are in alphabetical order.

Cocktails On Deck

Aruba Ariba (Courtesy of Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort, Oranjestad, Aruba)

National Rum Day 2023


1 oz. vodka

1 oz. rum

1 oz. Coecoei or fruit liquor

0.5 oz. Crème de Banana liqueur

0.5 oz. lime juice

2 oz. orange juice

2 oz. pineapple juice

2 oz. grenadine syrup


Fill a cocktail shaker halfway with ice cubes. Add vodka, rum, Coecoei or fruit liquor, banana liqueur, orange juice, cranberry juice, pineapple juice, grenadine syrup, and lime juice to the shaker. Shake the mixture vigorously for about 15-20 seconds to combine the ingredients and chill the cocktail. Strain the mixture into a hurricane glass or any other tall glass filled with ice. Garnish with an orange slice and a cherry, if desired.

“This drink uses the Aruban Coecoei or Cucui, a liqueur of indigenous origin derived from the kukwisa or agave plant.” – D.L.

Bahama Mama (Courtesy of Bon Vivants)

National Rum Day 2023


1 oz Dark Rum

1/2 oz Coconut Rum

1/2 oz Banana Liqueur

1 oz Pineapple Juice

1 oz Fresh Orange Juice

Splash of Grenadine

Crushed Ice

Optional: A pineapple or orange slice

“Bon Vivants is the first cocktail bar in The Bahamas and also doubles as a coffee shop. Sounds like my kind of place!” – D.L.

Bajan Soul

National Rum Day 2023


1.5 oz Mount Gay Rum Black Barrel

0.75 oz Fresh Lime Juice

0.5 oz Grenadine Syrup

0.75 oz Egg White

2 Dashes Peychaud’s Bitters


Dry shake all the ingredients the first time. Then, shake with ice cubes. Fine strain into a chilled coupette glass.

“We didn’t hear from our friends at Mount Gay for the holiday so we decided to bring this cocktail back from an earlier roundup.” – D.L.

Bayou Cosmopolitan

National Rum Day 2023


2 oz of Bayou White Rum

1 oz cranberry juice

,5 oz quality orange liqueur

.5 oz fresh squeezed lime juice


In a cocktail shaker add all ingredients. Top with cubed ice and shake vigorously for 10 seconds. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Add a lime wheel or lime wedge for a tart addition or an orange for a slightly sweeter taste.

“Check out the brief bio on Bayou in the bottles category below.” – D.L.

Dragonberry Mojito (Pelican Grand Beach Resort, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)

National Rum Day 2023


1.5 oz Bacardi dragonberry rum

0.75 oz pomegranate juice

6 slices of fresh lime or 1.0 oz fresh lime juice

6 leaves of fresh mint


Muddle 4 leaves of fresh mint with 4 lime juice, add Bacardi dragonberry rum and pomegranate juice. Shake and strain over ice in a traditional highball glass. Garnish with remaining fresh limes & mint.

“This cocktail gets its bright boost from pomegranate juice and the punch of Bacardi’s dragonberry rum.” – D.L.

El Floridita

National Rum Day 2023

2 oz Dos Maderas 5+3

1 oz. fresh lime juice

1 Tbsp. of cane sugar

.5 oz. Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur

1.5 cups of crushed ice

Chill a large Coupe or Snifter. Cut a lime in half and juice your limes. Add all ingredients to your blender and blend at a medium speed until the texture is smooth. Strain into your chilled glass. Garnish with freshly grated lime zest and serve with a reusable straw.

“Check out the brief bio on Dos Maderas in the bottles section below.” – D.L.

Hemingway En Nica

National Rum Day 2023


2 oz Papa’s Pilar Blonde Rum

1 oz Naranja agria-grapefruit syrup

3/4 oz Lime juice

12 drops Pimento bitters

1 Lime Wheel


Add ice and all liquid ingredients to a shaker. Shake vigorously for 15–30 seconds. Double strain the shaker’s contents into a chilled coupe (without ice). Garnish by floating the lime wheel on the surface of the drink.

“Inspired by the Hemingway Daiquiri, the En Nica is Papa’s Pilar’s signature cocktail. The brand partnered with Shaker & Spoon to offer a cocktail kit so folks can recreate the cocktail on their own.” – D.L.

Illumination –  (Space 220 at EPCOT, Orlando, Fla.)

National Rum Day 2023


1 oz Bacardi Superior Rum

1 oz Malibu Coconut Rum

1 oz Twisted Alchemy Passionfruit

1 oz Twisted Alchemy Blood Orange Juice

1 oz Twisted Alchemy Pineapple Juice

0.5 oz Twisted Alchemy Lime Sour

GARNISH: Mint, Passion Fruit Boba


Combine all liquid ingredients into a small shaker tin. Add ice and shake 20 times. Double strain into a Collins glass using a Hawthorne strainer. Garnish with mint and passion fruit boba.

“Space 220 is a restaurant nestled within Disney’s EPCOT Center, sporting a theme that’ll take diners in the stars and beyond. The Illumination employs two types of rum and fruit juices, topped with boba.” – D.L.

Island Time (Courtesy of The Brown Palace Hotel & Spa, Denver, Colo.)

National Rum Day 2023


2 oz Santa Teresa 1796 Rum

1 oz Lime Juice

1 oz Pineapple Juice

Sprinkle of Cinnamon


Combine all liquid ingredients into a shaker. Shake and Strain into a Collins glass over fresh ice. Sprinkle cinnamon on top and garnish with a lime wheel.

“Most wouldn’t associate the rolling mountains of Denver with rum but The Brown Palace Hotel and Spa has a drink on its menu that will transport you to the tropics on National Rum Day or any other day.” – D.L.

Jungle Bird

National Rum Day 2023


1 1/2 parts Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum

3/4 part Bitter Aperitif

1 1/2 parts pineapple juice

3/4part lime juice

1/2 part demerara syrup

Pineapple wedge

Method: Add the rum, Apertif, pineapple juice, lime juice, and demerara syrup into a shaker with ice and shake until well-chilled. Strain into a rocks glass over fresh ice. Garnish with a pineapple wedge.

“Among the categories of rum I mentioned above, I should’ve added spiced rum to that list. Sailor Jerry makes one of the top spiced rums around.” – D.L.

Mama Maggie (Courtesy of The Dilly Club)

National Rum Day 2023


1 1/2 oz Coconut Cartel Rum

3/4 oz Chinola Passion Fruit Liqueur

1/2 oz Giffard Hibiscus Syrup

3/4 oz Fresh Lime Juice

1/2 oz Mango Puree

2 oz Fresh Orange Juice

“The Dilly Club is the younger sister bar to Bon Vivants and swiftly staking its claim as a must-visit destination. Also, I LOVE Coconut Cartel!” – D.L.

Summer Hibiscus Cooler

National Rum Day 2023


1 1/2 oz Rum, Passion Fruit Rum, or Coconut Rum

1/2 oz Lime Juice

1/2 oz Simple Syrup (1 part sugar, 1 part water)

1 Can Q Hibiscus Ginger Beer

1 Lime Wheel


Shake all ingredients, except the Q Hibiscus Ginger Beer and strain into a highball glass filled with ice then top with the Q Hibiscus Ginger Beer and garnish with a lime wheel.

“Q Mixers makes an array of premium both carbonated and non-carbonated. I’m pretty fond of the brand’s selection of ginger beers.” – D.L.

The Fog of River North (Courtesy of Trump International Hotel & Tower Chicago, Chicago, Ill.)

National Rum Day 2023


0.5 oz Kasama Rum

0.5 oz Aperol

0.5 oz Lemon Juice

0.5 oz Simple Syrup

Splash of Prosecco


Using a rocks glass add in a large square piece of crafted ice, add equal parts of each ingredient over the ice and stir all ingredients to make this refreshing summer cocktail.

“Kasama is crafted in the Philippines and their rum, aged for seven years, forms the base of this slightly fizzy summer sipper.” – D.L.

The James (Courtesy of The Madison Hotel, Washington, D.C.)

National Rum Day 2023


1.5 oz Appleton (or an alternative dark Jamaican rum)

Champagne of choice

Angostura bitters

Mint sprig


Pour rum into a champagne flute and add a dash of Angostura bitters, stir lightly. Top with champagne of choice and garnish with a mint sprig.

“Appleton is an amazing Jamaican brand that produces fantastic rum from its core lineup all the way up to its rare casks selections.” – D.L.

The Perch Perfect Pineapple Refresher (Courtesy of The Wyvern, Punta Gorda, Fla.)

National Rum Day 2023


3 oz. Hard Truth Toasted Coconut Rum

1 oz. Bacardi Rum

Splash of Rose’s Lime Juice

3 oz. Pineapple Juice

Top with Ginger Ale


Mix the Toasted Coconut and Bacardi Rum and shake well. Add a splash of lime juice, and 3 oz. of pineapple juice. Pour over ice and top with ginger ale and a lime wedge.

“Hard Truth is a brand based in Nashville, a town in Brown County, Indiana. The company specializes in a number of spirits, including their toasted coconut rum expression.” – D.L.

Tipsy Turtle (Courtesy of Wild Dunes Resort, Isle of Palms, S.C.)

National Rum Day 2023


1.5 oz Rumhaven Coconut Rum

0.25 oz Blue Curacao

4 oz Pineapple Juice

Orange slice

Maraschino cherry


Combine coconut rum with blue curacao and pineapple juice. Shake or pour in and out of a mixing glass with ice. Build in Rocks glass, or a glass of your preference with ice and garnish with a cherry, half-moon orange slice and toy turtle.

“The Tipsy Turtle can be found at the Wild Dunes Resort in South Carolina’s Isle of Palms. It also supports a good cause as a portion of sales go to the South Carolina Aquarium Sea Turtle Care Center.” – D.L.

Bottles & Brands To Savor

Bardstown Bourbon Company Collaboration Series — Foursquare

National Rum Day 2023

“The innovative masterminds at Bardstown Bourbon Company specialize in unique whiskey blends, this time finishing the liquid for 22 months inside former barrels from the outstanding Foursquare rum distillery.” – D.L.

Bayou Rum

National Rum Day 2023

“Bayou Rum got its start in 2011 and is making strong strides in the industry by establishing itself as a major player in the rum category. Established in Lacassine, La., ripe with sugarcane fields, Bayou lays claim to the largest rum distillery in the United States.” – D.L.

Callwood Cane Rum

National Rum Day 2023

“Callwood Cane Rum is produced at the Callwood Rum/Arundel Distillery in Tortola, British Virgin Islands. We’ve been planning to speak with the owners of the brand for months and I promise you, this is a story we want to be told here at CASSIUSLIFE. Stay tuned.” – D.L.


National Rum Day 2023

“As we noted above, rum is well represented across the Caribbean, and in Central and South America. India enters its hat into the rum race with Camikara and its new 12-year expression, aged in American Oak, which is now available in the United States.” – D.L.

Dos Maderas

National Rum Day 2023

“Dos Maderas takes a unique approach to rum, combining two aging methods inspired by the famed rum producers of Barbados, and Guyana, both known for producing fine expressions of the spirit. Dos Maderas then continues to age its rums in sherry casks, a concept familiar to many in the whiskey world.” – D.L.

Redemption Rum Cask Finish

National Rum Day 2023

“We decided to add this rye whiskey expression from the great folks at Redemption because of its unique finish. We’ll be trying this one soon.” – D.L.

Sammy’s Beach Bar Rum

National Rum Day 2023

“From the mind of rocker Sammy Hagar, Sammy’s Beach Bar Rum has an array of rums and canned cocktails worthy of a pour.” – D.L.

Happy National Rum Day!

Photo: Getty