Happy Hour Quickie #3: Daiquiri

This week’s fast, easy, and effective recipe. Hey, you’ve got only an hour

This week’s Happy Hour Quickie — in addition to meeting the strict HHQ rules that the drink must be made from easily available ingredients, come together quickly, and be impossible to screw up — is a seasonal classic.

Happy Hour Quickie Daiquiri recipe

DaiquiriThis week I offer my favorite version, an evolved/stolen/tweaked Daiquiri that meets my preference for tart over sweet:

  • 1.5 oz white rum
    • Mid-shelf, ol-dependable, easy-on-the-wallet Bacardi works just fine
  • 1 oz lime juice
    • Fresh-squoze only — you knew that
  • .75 simple syrup
    • 1 oz for the more common, sweeter, arguably more balanced version

Shake and strain into a Martini glass or coupe [stronger], or over fresh ice in an Old Fashioned glass or, with cubes, into a Collins glass [more “sessionable“].

The drink can go naked or wear a lime wheel on the rim.

Happy Hour Quickie Daiquiri tasting notes

  • Clean, bright, tropical, easy to drink
  • Done right, it’s classically balanced — the sweet, tart, and strong living in cool harmony.

Impress your Happy Hour friends

  • The Daiquiri’s backstory is the exception to the rule in that its creation backstory is pretty clear. The Alcohol Professor, in his fine write-up of the Daiquiri’s history, features an image of a recipe handwritten by Jennings Cox, an American mining magnate getting rich extracting natural resources from Cuba, around 1900. He named it after a nearby Cuban beach.
  • The beverage was, perhaps, first served in the U.S. at the Army-Navy Club in Washington, D.C. Our fine generals and admirals, cocktail geeks!
  • Ernest Hemingway, while drinking and writing and drinking at the Floridita Hotel bar in Havana, would  order what’s now known as the “Papa Doble,” or “Hemingway Daiquiri.” A dependable source, fellow writer A.E. Hochner, recorded contemporaneously that at one sitting Papa downed 16 dobles. See “Tweaks” below for a drinkable bastard version of the P.D.
  • Knowledgeable professional barkeeps of high rank simply do not acknowledge the existence of the strawberry daiquiri.
  • Or frozen ones. Serving over crushed ice is perfectly acceptable — indeed, perhaps more authentic.

Quickie Daiquiri Recipe tweaks

  • The Hemingway Daiquiri,  a k a Papa Doble
    • The brilliant Eric Felton of the Wall Street Journal tells the whole rollicking Hemingway Daiquiri backstory, but the bottom line is that it appears the original was undrinkably tart by us normal humans.
    • An acceptable domesticated version, via Simon Difford’s Cocktails Made Easy: 1.5 white rum, .75 lime juice, .5 grapefruit juice, .75 simple syrup, .25 maraschino liqueur.
    • Grow some chest hair by cutting the simple syrup to .25. Or eliminating it.
    • Pay tribute to The Man by serving over crushed ice.
  • As a basic sour, the Daiquiri is endlessly riffable:
    • Use Cointreau instead of simple syrup and edge the drink closer to a rum Margarita.
    • Create your own sour mix of lemon, lime, and grapefruit juices.
    • Replace .25 of the simple syrup with maraschino liqueur.
  • Garnish with a dollar bill with the ends cut and curled to look like a palm tree. Go ahead, I dare you.

Author: Craig Stoltz

Cocktail enthusiast with no professional standing, former Time.com Top 25 blogger, and ex-Washington Post editor. I live in Bethesda, Maryland.

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