Who Says Daiquiris Are Only for Summer?

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Your holiday high has worn off. You’re back into the groove of your work commute. It’s generally gray, grim and cold out. Winter has firmly rooted itself into our lives. But don’t feel like you have to play that game. Whether you have a beach vacation on the horizon or you’re dreaming of one, these six daiquiris can help get you through these next few months until spring starts popping up.

La Floridita (Sparrow, Chicago)

Image: Nick Fochtman

Named for the famed La Floridita bar in Havana, this cocktail is a riff on the Hemingway Daiquiri that was created there. It comprises Caña Brava Panama rum, maraschino cherry liqueur, lime and grapefruit juice, Castor sugar and crushed ice blended together. It is refreshing and bright and offers plenty of beautiful rum on the palate—perfect for imagining yourself sitting on a beach in the newly accessible Havana.

Dead Reckoning Daiquiri (Rum Club, Portland, OR)

This boozy beauty is a favorite winter concoction at Rum Club, according to bar manager Emily Mistell. It takes a cue from the Captain’s Blood cocktail, which is a close relative to a Daiquiri, but steps it up a notch by using both super dark Skipper rum and a hefty Ed Hamilton Jamaican Black Pot Still rum. The flavors shine through when shaken with fresh lime, simple syrup and a couple dashes of Angostura bitters. The season really comes out with the addition of freshly grated nutmeg over top.

Mystery Gardenia (Lost Lake, Chicago)

Image:Clayton Hauck

This tiki take on a hot buttered rum (originally made in 1965 at Don the Beachcomber’s Las Vegas location) combines Gardenia spiced rum (made in-house at Lost Lake using cinnamon sticks, allspice berries, vanilla bean, butter and a bottle of light rum) with fresh lime, honey syrup and a couple of dashes of Angostura bitters. Served in the tropically festive bar in a coupe and garnished with a slice of pineapple and a flower, this stunner quickly warms you up while whisking you away.

Rishi Daiquiri (Rhubarb, Asheville, NC)

Rhubarb’s bar manager, Spencer Schultz, infuses Flor de Caña Seco and Appleton Jamaica rums with Rishi rooibos tea for a short while to prevent it from turning too bitter. Instead, the drink becomes herbal and aromatic when combined with fresh lime, simple syrup and a couple drops of Bittermens ‘Elemakule Tiki Bitters, which further add a bit of spiciness from cinnamon and allspice.

Christmas in Mobay (Smuggler’s Cove, San Francisco)

Even though we’re past the holidays, why not keep the spirit alive? Inspired by a spiced hibiscus drink enjoyed by Jamaicans around the holidays, Smuggler’s Cove owner Martin Cate, who calls rum the most fascinating spirit in the world, uses mostly Jamaican ingredients for this daiquiri. He infuses Wray & Nephew White Overproof rum and infuses it with dried hibiscus flower, whole cloves and ginger for 48 hours. The drink is rounded out with demerara simple syrup and fresh lime and served in a coupé with a lime wheel. The candy-red cocktail gives off spice and floral notes. Just imagine yourself sitting at the swim-up pool bar sipping it.

King Cake Daiquiri (Cane & Table, New Orleans)

Image: Sharon Pye

To help gear up for Mardi Gras, Cane & Table offers up its King Cake Daiquiri. But unlike the debauchery of NOLA’s biggest bash, this cocktail is a bit more refined, due to the inclusion of Banks 5 rum, a premium blend of 21 rums from six distilleries on five islands. Co-owner Nick Detrich associates Mardi Gras with cold weather in New Orleans and offers this drink as a respite from the cold. The rum mixed with vanilla bean and cinnamon syrups and lime mimics a king cake’s bready funkiness and citrus. Drink this and you’ll be saying, “Laissez les bons temps rouler!”

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