1) Rum is incredibly versatile in a wide array of summer drinks.
2) We're pirates. Yarrrr.
Sometimes one gets bored with the typical things that can be done with rum (rum and cokes, daiquiris, mojitos and the like) and feels the desire to branch out and do other things. I was scouring my resources when I came across a drink called the Bolo Cocktail. It was in The Savoy Cocktail Book, which means that it has a history dating back to at least the 1930s if not sooner. I'm a fan of a cocktail that's tried and true.
Upon doing some internet research, I found a couple of different variations that I found intriguing. I kept the sugar part of the Savoy recipe, but incorporated some bitters into the mix. It is my opinion that a drink is rarely, if ever, made worse by the incorporation of bitters.
Adapted heavily from The Savoy Cocktail Book
-2 oz. rum
-1 oz. orange juice
-1/4 oz. simple syrup
-dash bitters (I used Fee Bros.)
-juice of half a lemon
Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a lemon wedge.
I thought my adaptation worked out rather well. I wish I had dark rum, but under the circumstances I thought Bacardi was a nice substitute. Sometimes in this world, cocktails are mixed under less than perfect circumstances and we all just have to adapt. Like pirates. It had a fruity, sweet syrupy taste that would have made it a nice brunch cocktail. I'll have to keep it in mind the next time I feel the desire to drink in the morning.
What I like about this cocktail is its simplicity. It starts with a simple enough base--rum and citrus--and then throws in a couple of ingredients that are common enough but when put together, yields something unique.
Overall I thought it was a nice way to use some relatively inexpensive ingredients I had on hand. I love cognac, Benedictine, and single malt scotch as much as the next guy, but sometimes their use can be a little cost prohibitive. Sometimes you just want a nice cocktail that tastes like it costs a lot of money. Because if you know anything about pirates, they love rum, cocktails that taste expensive but aren't, and swashbuckling. Lots of swashbuckling.