We happen to have a plethora of light golden rum that my husband uses to whip up shakers full of Daiquiris. The Daiquiri is a classic cocktail made from rum, lime juice and powdered sugar. That is it —no bananas and strawberries and even if Hemingway liked a drop of Maracshino in his La Floridita Daiquiris, this drink is best served in its purest state. This always reminds me of the “Daiquiri Ice” sherbet served to children of all ages at Baskin Robbins but so much better….
The cocktail was supposedly invented about 1800 in a bar named Venus in Santiago, Cuba and was largely a local drink until the early 20th century, particularly in the 1940s when rum gained popularity due to wartime rationing of gin and Scotch and tourism to Cuba was at its peak. These can be made as sweet or tart as you like or can be made so austere as to become a rum Martini—Auntie Mame famously found the Daiquiri that stuffy Claude Upson served her too sweet:
Claude Upson: I got this recipe from a bartender I met in Havana. You’ll never guess the secret ingredient. I’ll give you one hint: there’s no sugar in a Claude Upson daiquiri!
Auntie Mame: And yet it’s so… sweet. Whatever do you use? Chocolate ice cream?
Life IS a banquet and you don’t need to starve to death—or go thirsty, as long as there is rum, lime juice and sugar in the house!
La Floridita Daiquiri
2 oz white rum
1/4 oz maraschino liqueur
1 oz lime juice
2/3 oz sugar syrup
Shake briefly with a glassful of crushed ice, and pour unstrained into a frosted cocktail glass. Serve.