Where you should be drinking on National Rum Day 2017
National Rum Day is Aug. 16, and there are some great bars in NYC that'll serve you award-winning, poolside, underground and sky-high rum cocktails.
Summer is ending faster than we'd like, and with it goes the season of rum. Before we're out of tropical cocktail season, here are five excellent places to drink
Long Island City’s Ravel Hotel opened its new rooftop Profundo Pool Club just in time for the warmest month of summer, with a Bali-inspired deck and a 50-foot pool. While there’s a perfectly summer-worthy blueberry-rum drink on the menu, it’s their resurrection of a tiki classic that caught our eye. Blending silver, dark and spiced rums, the Zombie will certainly turn you into, well, something less than fully conscious if you have more than two. But it’s also got some fun New York history: Though invented at Don the Beachcomber in California, it rose to fame at the 1939 World’s Fair in Queens. The pool club keeps it classic with falernum (the sweet, nutty syrup that gives Caribbean drinks their richness), grapefruit juice, Donn’s mix, Pernod and lime. Open through Sept. 17, 8-08 Queens Plaza S., profundopoolclub.com
The Dead Rabbit may have been founded by a couple of lads from Northern Ireland, but they’ve proven they can make tropical drinks with the best of ‘em, too. Blacktail, the Cuban-themed follow-up to their best-in-the-world bar, just earned its own accolades as Best New American Cocktail Bar at this year’s edition of the Oscars of drinking, Tales of the Cocktail. Its signature Perfect Daiquiri was a team effort led by head bartender Jesse Vida, using a blend of rums. “Obviously, we don’t get Cuban product in the States, so we do a blend of four white rums from Panama, Guyana, Haiti and Barbados,” he says. “We also do flavor variations of banana, strawberry and pineapple by doing fruit sous vide infusions.” If you've been before, swing by again — they just revamped the entire menu. Second floor of Pier A Harbor House, 22 Battery Place, blacktailnyc.com
You don’t need a special reason to check out Slowly Shirley, the Old Hollywood-inspired subterranean cocktail bar by two heavies of the drinking world, Jim Kearns (Pegu Club) and Jon Neidich (ACME). That said, rum fans should take note that this week through Aug. 20, they’re serving a special daiquiri menu all about the dark spirit of the islands. Or opt for the staple Chinatown Daiquiri, which starts with Appleton Reserve rum and incorporates the neighborhood’s flavors (plus a fortune cookie garnish) with Sriracha-strawberry puree, and honey and ginger syrups for a drink you won’t soon forget. 121 W. 10th St., slowlyshirley.com
It takes experienced food industry people to create a spot that’s all homey comfort. Esther & Carol — named after the owners’ moms — just opened this May in Nolita from Kevin King (Balthazar) and Cordell Lochin (La Esquina), with some help from Dave Oz of Bathtub Gin. Upstairs, it’s all 1940s-era Americana fare with a healthy bent, but head down the graffiti-covered stairwell and suddenly you’re in the basement garage of your dreams with a stage where anyone may turn up. Kick back in a red leather banquette with a cocktail that’s a damn sight better than whatever you mixed up from your parents’ liquor cabinet: the Big Poppa, with Mt. Gay Black Barrel and Smith & Cross rums, crème de banana, almond orgeat, lime, angostura bitters and nutmeg. 341 Broome St., estherandcarolnyc.com
If you’ve only been putting whiskey in your coffee, try it the Johnny Swet way at The Skylark. The mixologist turned summer’s hottest drink trend — cold brew coffee — into a mellow way to wind down your afternoon. The Cold Brew Coffee Swizzle mixes Sailor Jerry rum and coconut liquor with coffee steeped overnight, topped with a coconut milk float and slices of real coconut. Sip it with colleagues after work in the bar’s upscale indoor lounge or take it out onto their patio looking out at Midtown from 30 floors up. 200 W. 39th St., theskylarknyc.com