This bold concoction comes from New York City bartender Brian Miller, founder of the lauded Tiki spot the Polynesian. An assertive, spirit-forward drink, the Fat Like Buddha uses aged rum as the rich, dark spirit it is, rather than treating is as a liquor meant to be mixed with with citrus and syrups, like in a Daiquiri, Mai Tai or other beach-friendly drink.
Miller uses Flor de Caña 7-Year-Old Grand Reserve Rum as the base in his Fat Like Buddha; this aged rum has bright fruit notes and an understated elegance, and with at relatively low price point, it’s a solid choice for mixing in cocktails. Miller combines it with Dubonnet Rouge, a French, wine-based aperitif similar to sweet vermouth. The Fat Like Buddha also gets a quarter ounce each of Cointreau—a popular orange liqueur—and Benedictine, a deeply botanical herbal liqueur from France.
Besides the rum, which you can swap for another aged rum of similar quality and price, the ingredients in the Fat Like Buddha are particular, without much in the way of alternatives. If pressed, you can use something like Lillet Rouge or Byrrh—both aromatized red wines—in place of the Dubonnet Rouge. Cointreau can be swapped for something like Grand Marnier or Combier, though the flavors will be a bit different. Benedictine, on the other hand, is unique, without any good substitutions. Yellow Chartreuse is the closest (and priciest) alternative, and if you do splurge on a bottle, you can also use it in an Alaska cocktail.
- 2 ounces Flor de Caña 7-Year-Old Grand Reserve Rum
- 3/4 ounce Dubonnet Rouge
- 1/4 ounce Benedictine
- 1/4 ounce Cointreau
- Garnish: orange twist
Add the Flor de Caña 7-Year-Old, Dubonnet Rouge, Benedictine and Cointreau into a mixing glass filled with ice and stir until well-chilled.
Strain into a chilled coupe or rocks glass.
Garnish with an orange twist.