By most accounts, the Dark ’n’ Stormy is Bermuda’s national drink, but some would nominate the Rum Swizzle, although both are promoted by the islands’ local rum company. The Dark ’n’ Stormy is made of black rum with spicy ginger beer over cracked ice in an old-fashioned glass. While the drink goes back at least a century, attributed to Royal Naval officers, today the recipe is owned by Gosling’s of Bermuda, the marketer of Black Seal rum. At the risk of a little trademark infringement, some people dare to add a hit of lime juice. Also famous is the Rum Swizzle, made by mixing different rums and citrus juices with club soda, finishing with some grenadine and bitters. Swizzle Inn at Bailey’s Bay and The Swizzle South Shore in Warwick are named for the drink — or maybe it’s the other way around. Other indigenous rum drinks are the Bermudian, with gold rum, pineapple puree, Grand Marnier, muddled mint and a squeeze of lime; the Ginger Gale, a mix of gold rum and ginger ale, garnished with a lemon; and Bermuda coffee, made of black rum, Irish cream liqueur and French-roast coffee, with a dollop of whipped cream. Besides the hometown rum, Gosling’s, which claims to be Bermuda’s oldest business house, these islands also host the worldwide behemoth of rum, Bacardi & Company Limited, headquartered in Hamilton. Local microbrews come from Dockyard Brewing Company, at the Frog & Onion Pub in Royal Naval Dockyard. Six styles range from beige to black, including Whale of a Wheat, a light ale that takes a slice of lemon; St. David’s Light, brewed Pilsner style with a crisp flavour and a dry finish; Somer’s Amber Ale, a traditional copper-colour English bitter; Trunk Island Pale Ale, packed with a rich flavour and a sharp finish; Black Anchor, a black London porter; and the new Frog Bock Winter Warmer, a smooth, malty lager. Once upon a time, English ginger beer had up to 11 percent alcohol. But today the name refers to a fizzy soft drink still quite popular both here and in Britain, but G-rated. The recipe is water, ginger, sugar, bacteria and yeast, concocting a refreshment with more kick than the typical American ginger ale. Other Bermudian favourites include shandy, made from lager and either ginger beer or lemonade; shrub, a drink made from Bermuda sour oranges, lemons and rum liqueur; and tea, still practised as an esoteric art throughout the realm, but that’s a whole other story.
Published by HCP Media. View All Articles.