Cocktail & Other Recipes By Spirit Rum Cocktails

Gangster’s Paradise

gangster's paradise cocktail in a hurricane glass with a bamboo straw, edible orchid, pineapple fronds and shredded carrot
Image:

Spare Room

Turmeric is an earthy and bitter spice that is frequently used in Asian and Southeast Asian cooking. Along with its gently spicy flavor, it’s known for adding a vibrant orange-yellow hue to dishes (it’s also responsible for coloring mustard yellow). With strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric has long been considered to have health benefits, and drinkers have caught on to all that turmeric can impart, increasingly infusing the spice into spirits and mixing it into cocktails.

“It was only a few years ago that I started to get to know the flavor profile and applications of turmeric in cocktails,” says Yael Vengroff, the Los Angeles bartender and beverage director behind The Spare Room and other concepts. “One day, I was playing around with the flavor triangle of carrot, turmeric and coconut and landed on the Gangster’s Paradise. I wound up not using coconut in the cocktail but used passion fruit and cream to create this spin on a Colada.”

Vengroff’s Piña Colada riff features aged rum from Barbados and spiced rum from St. Lucia, plus pineapple juice, passion fruit juice, cinnamon syrup, heavy cream and turmeric oil. It’s tart and tropical, with the rich hint of cream and the trademark earthiness of turmeric. Rather than throwing the spice directly into the shaker or dusting it on top of the drink as a garnish, she uses an equal parts mix of turmeric oil and water for a concentrated dash of flavor.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 ounces Mount Gay Black Barrel rum

  • 1/2 ounce Chairman’s Reserve Spiced Original rum

  • 1 ounce pineapple juice

  • 3/4 ounce heavy cream

  • 3/4 ounce passion fruit juice

  • 1/2 ounce cinnamon syrup

  • 1 drop turmeric oil (1 part turmeric oil and 1 part water)

  • Garnish: edible orchid

  • Garnish: pineapple fronds

  • Garnish: shredded carrot

Steps

  1. Add the rum, spiced rum, pineapple juice, heavy cream, passion fruit juice, cinnamon syrup and turmeric oil into a shaker with ice and shake until well-chilled.

  2. Pour unstrained into a hurricane glass and top with crushed ice.

  3. Garnish with an edible orchid, pineapple fronds and shredded carrot.