Rum Review: What Rum Makes the Best Classic Daiquiri

What Rum Makes the BEST Daiquiri? Captain Morgan Silver, Bacardi, J. Wray, Largo Bay or Cruzan. Head to head taste test!

Preparing for self-isolation during a global pandemic is much like preparing for a hurricane in South Florida. You need the essentials: water, snacks, t-paper and alcohol. We thought, since we were stuck at home binge watching sailing videos, we would delve into what white rum makes the perfect classic daiquiri.

By all accounts the daiquiri was created at the end of the 19th century by an American engineer named Jennings Stockton Cox who led an exploratory expedition in the Cuban iron ore mines. Legend has it, there was a meeting between Cox and another engineer named Pagliuchi, during which they began making drinks from the ingredients Cox had on hand; rum, limes and sugar. Cox’s granddaughter, though, conveys a different story saying her grandfather was out of gin while entertaining the American guest and used rum instead. Either way the lime forward drink was forever set into cocktail history.

Here’s our Daiquiri Recipe

The recipe we used was:

  • 2 ounces light Rum
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice
  • ½ ounce simple syrup

Shaken (not stirred) and served in a martini glass.

Note: Sugar doesn’t dissolve well in cold drinks so many now use simple syrup.

What Rum Makes the BEST Daiquiri?

  • Captain Morgan Silver – Captain Morgan Silver has a manufactured sweetness to the rum which does not shine in a daiquiri. At first the lime forward cocktail made our lips pucker then smoothed out as we continued to sip. The only hint of the rum is some woodiness on the finish.
  • Bacardi – The prominent vanilla notes of the Bacardi play well with the lime to create a pineapple note. The Bacardi softens the lime and uses the rum characteristics to enhance the citrus. We will say this is more on the sweet side and can be quite dangerous if you don’t watch yourself.
  • J. Wray – There is a toasty note to this drink that breaks through the lime with a definite vanilla undertone. The rum provides a balance with the lime and offers an oaky finish. The drink presents as a more refined cocktail made with a more complex rum. Clint says it reminds him of a fine tequila.
  • Largo Bay – We debated this cocktail for quite a while. While the almond notes of the rum come through it doesn’t play well with the lime. We felt the drink almost needed more simple syrup to subdue the lime. We use Largo Bay as our standard mixing rum for more sweet forward drinks. Maybe that is this rum’s true calling.
  • Cruzan – Although the nose of Cruzan is extremely alcohol forward, the daiquiri is refreshing with a good balance of lime to rum. The vanilla and oak notes from the rum compliment the lime, reminding us of drinking a limeade by the side of the pool. The sweetness level is just below that of the Bacardi.

So…  The Results: What Rum makes the Best Daiquiri?

We loved experimenting with these drinks.

  • Terry’s favorite was the Bacardi
  • Clint liked the undertones of the J. Wray

Send your favorite daiquiri recipe to [email protected]