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What are some good drink recipes for Mardi Gras?

Frank Bell81 Posted

What are some good drink recipes for Mardi Gras?

Tom Wagner

Mardi Gras is the solemn celebration that rings in the Christian observance of Lent.  Called Fat Tuesday (the literal translation of Mardi Gras), this precedes Ash Wednesday, the start of Lent, when all good Christians fast and temporarily give up festivities.

Yeah, right.  Today, Mardi Gras translates into the words “drunken orgy.”

 If your objective is the same as most celebrating Mardi Gras—getting drunk as quickly as possible—you can’t go wrong with shots, shots of anything.  But of course, as New Orleans is famous for harboring pirates in days of yore, the most appropriate shooter would be rum, and if you really want to get blasted in a hurry, throw back a couple shots of Bacardi 151.

If, however, you have more sophisticated tastes and want to serve mixed cocktails, you have many options.  The weather is usually warm for Mardi Gras, though not hot, so you want something refreshing, potent but not necessarily tropical in nature.  Most of all, you want to keep it simple.  The most traditional of such drinks is the hurricane.


Fill a hurricane glass with ice and add:

  • 2 oz. light rum
  • 2 oz. gold rum
  • 2 oz. passion fruit syrup
  • 1 oz. fresh lime juice
  • Stir and serve, garnishing it with a slice of orange or lime (all garnishes are optional, of course)


To achieve an added degree of tipsiness, more rum is always called for.  Rum cocktails are generally somewhat sweet; this is the best way to mask the flavor of the alcohol and fool your guests into drinking more than they should.  And a good way to go about this is by serving Bahama Mamas.

Bahama Mama

Splash a dash of Grenadine into the bottom of a hurricane glass and fill it with ice, then add:

  • 1 1/2 oz. light rum
  • 1 1/2 oz. gold rum
  • 1 1/2 oz. dark rum
  • 1 oz. sour mix
  • 1 oz. pineapple juice
  • 1 1/2 oz, orange juice
  • Serve, garnishing it with pineapple chunks and/or a slice or orange


Of course, the previous recipe goes against my rule of keeping it simple.  And the more you as bartender drink, the more difficult it will be to mix more complicated drinks, as it should be.  So to lessen the burden on your brain and coordination, you can go with the old Bacardi cocktail.

Bacardi Cocktail

Pre-chill a stemmed cocktail glass in the freezer or with ice water.

  • Fill a mixing glass with ice and add:
  • 2 1/2 oz. Bacardi gold rum
  • 1/2 oz. fresh lime juice
  • 3 dashes of Grenadine
  • Shake and strain into the cocktail glass; garnish with a slice of lime


You can start by serving the more complex drinks, and as your coordination and enthusiasm for impressing your guests goes out the window in direct proportion to how much you drink, move on to the simpler drinks—as long as you stick with rum drinks.  Remember what happened the last time you tried to mix different liquors in your belly?  The last thing you need is a houseful of hurling guests during Mardi Gras!


Salt the rim of a hurricane glass (optional) and fill with ice, then add:

  • 3 oz. light rum
  • 1 oz. blackberry brandy
  • Fill remainder with pineapple juice
  • Serve, garnishing it with chunks of pineapple


After all of this, the only beverage I can recommend is coffee, good and strong and plenty of it.

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