Back in the early days of rum, infusing it with spices was the easiest way to make the raw spirit palatable. Pretty much any edible plant could make its way into local mixes back then. Today, things are a little more consistent, and vanilla, cinnamon and clove are usually the main flavor components, along with things like nutmeg, orange peel, allspice and cloves. With all of those rich flavors already present in the rum, it’s easy to find a mixer that works. Here are the seven best things to mix with spiced rum.
A simple Rum and Coke is one of the most recognized bar orders, and it’s been in the drinking lexicon in one way or another since the early 1900s. Spice up the traditional mix by using spiced rum instead of white rum. The vanilla and cinnamon flavors in the rum blend perfectly with familiar Coca-Cola and give the soft drink a boosted flavor profile.
Are you the type of person who puts an extra pump of flavoring into your coffee every morning? Let spiced rum step in instead (when you’re not strolling into work right after, of course). Spiced rum and, if you’re feeling fancy, a touch of cream can make even the most bland coffee interesting.
Spiced rum and ginger beer is no Dark ‘N’ Stormy (that specifically requires Goslings), but it’s delicious nonetheless. Opt for a dry ginger beer to temper some of the inherent sweetness of the spiced rum. For best results, treat it like a carefully measured Highball by making it with 1.5 ounces of spiced rum and 4 ounces of ginger beer.
Apples and spiced rum may be from completely different parts of the world, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a more compatible couple. This goes for all types of apple, too, whether it’s stirred into cold apple juice over ice, dropped into hard cider as a shot, or stirred into hot cider in the winter. If it’s a juice made with apples, then it’ll mix well with spiced rum.
Anything tropical is a natural fit for spiced rum. If you really want to get fancy, shake the juice and rum together with ice and get it nice and frothy. Or, if you’re on the islands and feel like being the envy of every person who passes, hollow out a pineapple, juice it and drink the rummed-up concoction straight out of the fruit.
Hit the lemonade stand this summer because this mix is a stunner—kind of like if a Lynchburg Lemonade went to the Caribbean. Tart, fresh lemonade brightens up spiced rum’s heady vanilla, clove, cinnamon and nutmeg flavors. If you like things on the sweeter side, simply opt for a sweeter lemonade.
This is what you should be drinking if you’re in the vicinity of a porch and a rocking chair. A light iced tea is easily spruced up with spiced rum to give it some depth and personality. If you really want to get wild, use a hard iced tea like Twisted Tea or Not Your Mama’s Iced Tea. The mix gets even better if you add a splash of lemon juice or follow Arnold Palmer’s lead and add your spiced rum to a 50-50 mix of iced tea and lemonade.