With Labor Day upon us, having your bar ready for an extended weekend of festivities is a must. And since we’re looking to get one last sun fix instead of being stuck in the kitchen before summer ends, we’re all about low-maintenance batchable cocktails. Trade in your punch bowl for this elevated version of one of our favorite cocktails: the rum and cola from BlackTail in NYC (see the video above).
White rum gets mixed with cola syrup, fernet and bitters before getting topped with Champagne for an effervescent twist on the classic drink. Since this is the perfect cocktail for pleasing picky drinkers and spirits snobs alike, we’ve done the math for you and scaled up the recipe for a backyard full of your closest friends family.
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At BlackTail, the Cuban-inspired project from the folks behind Dead Rabbit, bar manager Jesse Vida draws inspiration for this new creation from the Cuba Libre, the popular cocktail we know (and love) as the rum and Coke. “We wanted it to be a nostalgic representation of the cocktail, but it also had to be different in a fun and exciting way,” Vida explains. “The reason we went with Champagne is because of the flavor pairing with cola; they work very well together.”
We couldn’t agree more, which is why we add an entire bottle of the bubbly stuff to our recipe. “Batching is more or less just simple math,” Vida points out. However, if the recipe calls for bitters, he advises adding only half of what would be the scaled amount, since bitters can become increasingly potent swirling around in a punch bowl.
Our punch bowl advice? Make life even easier by filling up a Bundt pan ahead of time with water and any cocktail garnishes you like (we’re fans of maraschino cherries and citrus twists), then freeze overnight, so the next day you have a giant cocktail-worthy ice cube ready to go.
So this weekend, assemble the perfectly batched party cocktail and spend your time working on that tan instead of the bar. Your second rum and cola is only a punch bowl away.
Rum & Cola
Recipe adapted from Jesse Vida, BlackTail, New York, NY
Yield: 6 to 8 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: N/A
Total Time: 10 minutes
6 ounces Bacardi FACUNDO NEO rum
4½ ounces cola syrup
½ ounce fernet
6 dashes Orinoco Bitters
1 bottle Champagne
Lemon twists, for garnish
In a punch bowl, combine all of the ingredients, except for the Champagne, and stir until well mixed. While continuing to stir slowly, stream in the Champagne to incorporate. Divide between glasses and serve with a lemon twist.