Spicing Up The Classic Rum and Coke

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The rum and coke is a classic highball cocktail. Its simplicity is tasty, relying on two primary ingredients — the titular rum and some sort of dark soda like Coca-Cola — served over ice. There’s no reason to mess with perfection, but sometimes you want something a little fancier. Check out these tips and tricks to help elevate the classic rum and coke and turn it into something more sophisticated. 

Back to Basics

Before we can branch off into elevating our rum and coke, we must understand how to make the drink. Thankfully, it’s a simple cocktail. All you need is your favorite rum and some cola or other dark soda. The precise amount of both ingredients will depend on your tastes and the desired drink strength. Most professionals think that one part rum to two or two and a half parts coke offers the best ratio of flavor to alcohol.

Bringing Your A Game

It’s easy to buy the cheapest rum you can find, topping it off with store-brand cola, but you’re not going to get the best results. What can you do to take your drink up a notch?

Mix Your Rums

Each rum you use adds unique flavors to the drink, upping the complexity without needing a lot of effort. White rums have a lighter flavor, while spiced or dark rums will add more spice or flavor notes to the drink.

Ditch the Corn Syrup

Classic Coca-Cola — along with most modern sodas — is made with lots of high fructose corn syrup, which provides a lot of sweetness but isn’t always the best option for sophisticated drinks. If it’s available, opt for a higher quality soda like the throwback coke that contains cane sugar instead of corn syrup. 

Add Lime

You can’t go wrong with a bit of lime juice, especially in a sweet drink like rum and coke. Add the juice of half a lime to your glass to cut through some of the sweetness and give it a bit of freshness. 

Add Bitters

People usually associate bitters with a classic martini, but it can add a punch of flavor and sophistication to even the simplest cocktail. Experiment with different bitters to see what works best with your tastes. 

Elevating the Rum and Coke

Improving the quality of your ingredients is only one way to elevate your rum and coke. Try these unique twists that might change the way you think of this iconic cocktail forever. 

Rum & Coke Float

We usually make floats with root beer, but as long as you have ice cream and some soda, it’s technically a float. Adding a shot or two of the rum takes this drink to a new level. Our favorite way to assemble this drink is to start with a couple of scoops of vanilla ice cream, add your rum and then top with coke.

Spiked Cherry Coke Slush

Is there anything better than a slushy on a hot afternoon? Topping a standard slushy off with your favorite booze is fun, but adding your ingredients to a blender makes it even tastier. Add your coke, rum and some cherry liqueur to a blender with ice. Blend to your desired consistency and serve. 

A Champagne Topper

If sophistication is the order of the day, you can’t go wrong with a champagne topper. Mix your rum and coke as desired, then top it off with your favorite champagne or sparkling wine. 

Which Drink Upgrade Sounds the Tastiest?

Rum and coke might be classic drinks, but that doesn’t mean it needs to be boring. Try these tips to spice up your favorite cocktail next time to start mixing. Which upgrade sounds the tastiest?


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