The History of the Daiquiri

The daiquiri, a cocktail conjured from rum, lime juice and sugar, originated in Cuba where such ingredients are plentiful, and has been a popular libation in the United States and beyond for over a century.

American mining engineer Jennings Cox first mixed the diaquiri cocktail in 1900 at a bar in Santiago, Cuba. While some may credit Cox with creating the daiquiri, British sailors were consuming the grog’s combination of rum, water, lime juice and sugar as a daily ration in the latter 1700s.

The recipe for the daiquiri arrived from Cuba to United States soil by way of Admiral Lucius Johnson, a US naval medical officer who consequently introduced the tropical beverage at the Army and Navy Club in Washington DC in 1909. Appreciation for the Cuban specialty spread across the country, earning mention in a passage of F.Scott Fitzgerald’s novel This Side of Paradise, published in 1920.

President Roosevelt may be the individual credited for the daiquiri’s surge in popularity in the 1940s. Wartime rationing had made liquor and other products rare commodities. In an effort to open trade relations and travel destinations with the Caribbean region, Roosevelt initiated the Good Neighbour policy, thus rum became readily available. Latin American culture became trendy, and the daiquiri was popularized by such public figures as president John F. Kennedy and author Ernest Hemmingway.

The daiquiri has been recreated into several variations on the original theme. The rum, lime juice and sugar trinity of ingredients for the classic daiquiri is traditionally shaken and then strained into a chilled cocktail glass. Over the decades, the daiquiri has evolved to include fruit, such as strawberries, raspberries and bananas, which are pureed in a blender with the original ingredients. A daiquiri may be enjoyed as a frozen potion with the addition of either ice cubes or frozen chunks of fruit blended with the basic ingredients until smooth. The El Floridita daiquiri is made with maraschino liqueur, the Mulata daiquiri features the combination of rum and coffee liqueur, and the Hemmingway ingredient list calls maraschino liqueur and grapefruit juice in lieu of sugar.

Whether your choice is a smooth frozen refresher on a hot summer evening, or if you are a purist enjoy your daiquiri straight up in its classic form, its popularity continues to beckon from many a bartender’s repertoire and from your favourite bar and grill restaurant’s menu. Cheers!

This post was written by ....

Make me a cocktail
Make me a cocktail is the world's best online cocktail resource - or so we like to think (I mean, we did build it). Started in 2010 and still going strong, we're passionate about bringing you the best cocktails in the best ways possible.

Comments

Recent posts

    • The History of the Tequila Sunrise
      It is very rare to find the Tequila Sunrise on the cocktail menu of any self-respecting classy establishment these days, since it has gained a rather
    • Cocktail by the poolCocktails in the Pool
      Now that the days are getting longer and the temperatures are finally starting to rise, you may have turned your thoughts towards booking your summer
    • Tatler Top CocktailWhat’s Hot and What’s Not: The Tatler Guide to Drinking in 2018
      As with most things in life, beverages come in and out of fashion all the time, some faster than we can drink them in fact! To help keep the clueless