If you like Piña Coladas and Mudslides, you’ll love this sweet and creamy concoction that falls somewhere between the two, essentially a boozy milkshake. Like its boozy siblings, it was invented at a Caribbean resort. Its creation is credited to bartender Angie Conigliaro at the Ship’s Store & Sapphire Pub on the island of St. Thomas in the USVI in 1975. It’s said to have been named for a patron’s dog.
Shortly after, the owner of the Sandshaker Bar in Pensacola, Florida, visited the St. Thomas resort bar, where she fell in love with the Bushwacker and brought it back to her own bar, where it grew in fame. A version is now mass-produced in a bottled format by Bushwacker Spirits, and an annual festival celebrating the drink is held in Pensacola.
The original recipe is said to have included rum, Baileys Irish cream, creme de cacao and coconut cream. In the years since its creation, the formula has undergone many variations, some seriously booze-heavy, some barely containing any alcohol at all. You’ll find any combination of rum, coffee and amaretto liqueurs, Baileys, triple sec and creme de cacao. Flavored rums sometimes make an appearance. Some recipes double up on the cream of coconut and omit the milk or even swap in ice cream. Some double-down on the chocolate flavor with a drizzle of syrup over the glass.
Our formulation leans more boozy and less saccharine-sweet than most. But there’s really no wrong way to make one. And no one will judge if you feel like adding a festive dollop of whipped cream and a maraschino cherry on top.
- 2 ounces dark rum
- 1 ounce coffee liqueur (such as Kahlúa)
- 1 ounce dark creme de cacao
- 1 ounce cream of coconut (such as Coco Lopez)
- 2 ounces whole milk
- Garnish: grated nutmeg
Add all ingredients and a cup of ice into a blender and blend until combined and frothy.
Pour into a Hurricane glass.
Garnish with grated nutmeg.