Sure, rum and sailors go together, but did you ever wonder how that all got started? You’d have go go back 400 years or so…
Sailors in the 17th century were given a daily ration of 1 gallon of beer per day. Beer lasted longer than water at sea, and also helped with the morale of the crew.
By 1655, due to the storage problems associated with beer i.e., space and spoilage on long voyages in warmer climes, a spirit allowance was introduced instead. Given the political influence of the plantation owners in the Caribbean at that time, Rum became the spirit of choice and each sailor was given 1/2 pint of rum per day; their Rum Ration.
By 1725 the amount of alcohol consumed by the sailors was beginning to cause a problem on board the ships. Some sailors would save their rum rations and then drink them all at once, even though drunkenness was punishable by flogging. Admiral Edward Vernon was given the task of finding a solution. His answer was to water down the rum. The rum ration was still the same but water had to be added. Sailors were given sugar and lime to make up for the decreased quantity; the mixture became known as grog, derived from Admiral Vernon’s nickname “Grogrum”.
Sugar and lime not only improved the taste of the drink, but the vitamin C also helped prevent scurvy. Grog was so popular that the drink soon spread beyond the sea to shore and inspired recipes that are still enjoyed today.
1½ oz. light rum
1 oz. lime juice, freshly squeezed
1 tsp. sugar or simply syrup
In a cocktail shaker, shake all ingredients well with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
Dark ‘n’ Stormy
2 oz. dark rum
4 oz. ginger beer
½ cup ice
In an old-fashioned glass, combine rum and ginger beer. Add ice and stir.
¾ oz. spiced rum
¼ oz. blackberry liqueur
¼ oz. crème de bananes
2 oz. orange juice
8 oz. crushed ice
In a blender, combine spiced rum, blackberry liqueur, crème de bananes, orange juice, grenadine, and crushed ice. Blend until slushy and pour into glass.
Tomorrow We Sail
3½ oz. champagne
½ oz. LBV port
½ oz. dark rum
1 tsp. triple sec
In a champagne flute, combine ingredients and garnish with a twist of orange peel.