10 White and Dark Rum Drinks You Must Try

Rum has a reputation in America as a mixer liquor. Though it does have a complex and varied tradition, having many different forms across all the continents it’s made on (every one, except Antarctica of course), it truly is an extremely versatile drink and any all-inclusive Dominican Republic villa worth its salt will have a wide assortment of rums, though it’s often bogged down with saccarine-syrupy-fruity flavorings. Here’s a rundown of ten list must-try, classic rum drinks, some familiar, some not, either way no frills added:

-The Rum and Coke. Who hasn’t had a rum and coke before? Traditionally, it’s made with some lime juice as well, so if you haven’t had this more rustic version, get squeezing.

-The Daquiri. Like the margarita, the daquiri is often molested by syrupy mixtures, or prepared as a fruity, garnish-laden slushie. The basic drink itself is only three parts: White rum, lime juice, and sugar, chilled to perfection.

-The Mojito. Ask for it at the wrong bar and you’ll get a look– it requires some finesse to prepare properly. Mint is the key ingredient here, specifically spearmint. It’s muddled in the bottom of a glass, and lime juice (noticing a trend here?) and ice are added. White rum goes over the ice, and if you did it right, the ice will keep the leaves from floating.

-Mamajuana. It’s likely you haven’t heard of this one, unless you’re familiar with drinks from the Dominican Republic. It’s also not a cocktail so much as it is a tonic of sorts. The most striking feature about a bottle of mamajuana is probably the fact that it appears to be full of sticks and leaves: Anise, basil, canella, clove, agave, and other herbs are the essential flavorings of the drink, all soaking in dark rum with molasses, cinnamon, raisins, and even strawberries. It might take a trip to the Dominican to try, unless you’re crafty enough yourself to make it, but it could be worth it: mamajuana has claims of being cure for everything from the flu to arthritis as well as an aphrodisiac.

-The Pina Colada. Sometime’s it’s fine to get a little fruity. Pineapple juice fills in the role here, but it’s combined with a sweet buttery smoothness supplied by coconut cream. Again, this drink is often presented as a slush of ice and flavor, but as long as it’s cold enough to beat the heat, that’s all that’s really needed.

-The Caipiríssima. A variant of another cocktail, this one sees the return of some key players, and is great if you have a rum that is good enough to drink on its own. Slice up some limes, put them with some ice dusted with sugar in a glass, and pour the rum in. Done.

-The Dark and Stormy. A slight variation of the rum and coke. Has to be spiced rum this time, and skip the lime juice, and instead of regular cola, the base is made from ginger beer: the darker and spicier, the stormier.

-The Chappara. Another simple, offbeat drink. It’s equal parts rum and sweet vermouth, plus some sugar and lemon. Done again!

-Egg Nog: Many would reach for the whiskey bottle to add to their creamy glass of holiday cheer. Many people wouldn’t think to put spicy, dark, rum into it instead. Many people would be wrong.

-The Zombie. Okay, if it’s got to be fruity, it might as well be strong, too. The Zombie includes a variety of rums, including the mighty 151-proofer, plus some apricot brandy as well as lime and pineapple juice. See ya!