Passion Grove Swizzle – A Summer Tiki Cooler

Early in my Tiki education, which at that point was primarily Beachbum Berry’s Sippin’ Safari and a scattering of blog posts, I learned a mantra: Always fresh squeeze your juice! It’s not so hard with lemons, limes, and oranges, but pineapples are always a challenge. They’re cumbersome and not easily juiced with normal kitchen gadgets. Even after a budget centripetal juicer appeared, juicing pineapples was still something I sought to avoid – the juice was too frothy and the yield too low. It always felt like I was forsaking too much product in the wet, pulpy remains.

Salvation arrived via an inexpensive masticating juicer which yields far better results with pineapples and nearly everything else. With a carefully selected ripe pineapple, I get between a half and a full quart of high-quality pineapple juice, begging to be used in tropical libations.

Problem solved, right? Unfortunately, despite my extensive library of Tiki recipes, I soon was bemoaning that many recipes utilizing pineapple juice only call for three-quarters of an ounce or less. As a simple home Tikitender, it can take weeks to use at that rate.  Frustrated over making the same set of high-pineapple usage recipes over and over – Mr. Bali Hais, Boo Loos, Chartreuse Swizzles, Pina Coladas, and others, I took matters into my own hands and devised my Pineapple Grove Swizzle.

In mulling over what to include, I wanted some of my favorite flavors while keeping it light and fresh rather than a heavy spice bomb like a Rum Barrel. For lighter tropical drinks, I reach for lemon rather than lime. Regarding the falernum, I wanted healthy ginger notes to combine beautifully with the pineapple juice. As such, you might go with a darker, commercial falernum like Maggie’s Farm, rather than Velvet Falernum. Of course it’s fun to make your own at home.

For the rum component, I wanted a bit of lighter feel but with a healthy Jamaican funk, without it taking over–a perfect opportunity for a blend of rums! Here I went for a multi-country white rum (Plantation 3 Stars) with a smaller amount of high proof, high ester Jamaican overproof (Rum Bar Overproof). Of course, you can experiment with other blends – Banks 5 or Denizen White subbing for the Plantation, and Wray & Nephew Overproof or Rum Fire replacing the Rum-Bar to create different levels of funk.

Remember – every recipe is just a suggested starting point. Here, consider tweaking the ratios of Plantation/Overproof to your desired funky preferences, and feel free to adjust your sweet and spice levels. Post your findings in the comments!

Passion Grove Swizzle – Cocktail Wonk (Matt Pietrek)
  • 1.25 oz Plantation 3 Stars
  • 0.75 oz Jamaican overproof (e.g. Rum-Bar)
  • 1 oz pineapple juice, fresh pressed
  • 0.75 oz lemon juice
  • 0.5 oz passion fruit syrup
  • 0.5 oz falernum (One with strong ginger notes)

Build in a chilled cooler glass. Fill mostly with crushed ice. Swizzle vigorously with a swizzle stick or use a spindle blender. Top up with more crushed ice. Garnish festively.

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4 thoughts on “Passion Grove Swizzle – A Summer Tiki Cooler”

    1. I faced the same problem of having a large quantity of fresh pineapple juice left after juicing when making a few cocktails (and I’m a very scattershot drinker; I’ll jump from making a tiki drink to a strong, stirred, bitter drink to a whole egg flip in the same session), so I started freezing it in the smaller Tovolo cube trays and storing them in Ziploc freezer bags. The cubes are roughly roughly 1 oz; if you want, you could measure out 1/2 and 3/4 oz as well for more accuracy. When needing pineapple juice for a cocktail, I just take a cube out, do a rough cut by eye if I need less than 1 oz, and muddle it a bit in the shaker tin with one of the other liquid ingredients (usually the citrus). I’ve stored the juice cubes for a few months without any obvious loss of flavor or quality, and it’s certainly much better than any canned alternative.

      1. Thanks for the input! I’ve experimented a bit with freezing fresh pineapple juice. Seemed to work, but inevitably I run out, or they get lost in the depths of the freezer, or what not. But if folks have the rigor to do this properly, by all means, go for it!

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