This cocktail is as impressive as it sounds. A mouthful. A super cocktail. It has strong sweet vermouth and grenadine notes, balanced by the acidity in lime juice and backed by rum. It’s flavorful, and quite sweet, but doesn’t look as impressive as it tastes. I mean with a name like this you’d expect an over-the-top garnish and glass but no, a simple coupe holds this mighty drink. However, drinking this is an experience !
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What is Queen’s Park Hotel Super Cocktail ?
Its origin story is a bit of a debate, but it’s tied to the original Queen’s Park Hotel in Trinidad, which was the place to be back in the early 1900s. This was the bar’s signature drink, but the hotel has sadly been torn down several years ago. Its name lives on in this cocktail, snd also with its sibling, the Queen’s Park Swizzle.
When is this drink best ?
I’m getting some very summery, Caribbean vibes so I recommend this as a midsummer drink. Perhaps a late summer evening, because of the vermouth. It could also work well when temperatures start to drop and the cold season rolls in, just to remind you of that last vacation, or to hype you up for an upcoming one.
- 1.5 oz dark rum
- 0.5 oz sweet vermouth (red)
- 0.5 oz fresh lime juice
- 0.5 oz grenadine syrup
- 3 dashes angostura bitter
- (optional) lime for garnish
- In a shaker add rum, vermouth, grenadine, lime juice, bitters, ice. Shake a couple of times.
- Strain (or double strain) into a chilled Martini glass or coupe.
- Garnish with lime zest, or leave as-is.
- Shaking vermouth, especially with ice, will give you bubbles on the surface. If you want to avoid them, double strain.
- Or, don't shake the vermouth, stir it in last, resulting in a slightly thicker drink. But for this you need very cold vermouth (keep in the fridge).
- This is a fairly small cocktail, just a little over 3 oz. If you want more, your best shot is to just double everything.
My thoughts on this drink
This cocktail is everywhere, but somehow balanced. It’s sweet, quite sweet, but it’s also tart and the lime juice I think manages to temper both the grenadine and the sweet vermouth. No one stands out too much here, and you get a nice and even mix of sweet and tart, with a nice burn at the end.
That being said, I think the presentation could be improved, mostly because I’m not a fan of how foamy vermouth gets when you shake it. Double straining helps but doesn’t remove it entirely.
If you like Queen’s Park Hotel Super Cocktail, you might also like…
Queen’s Park Swizzle – a mix of mojito and the original Queen’s Park
Old Cuban – rum-based, surprisingly good
Million Dollar – an old cocktail, quite sweet, and very silky
Notes, substitutes, and tips
Get a good grenadine syrup, the kind with pomegranate molasses in the ingredients and actual grenadine extract. The flavor matters a lot.
Vermouth will be noticeable, even in a smaller dose like here. If you’re unsure about vermouth it’s a very good starter; if you still don’t like vermouth in this, you probably won’t like it in other drinks.
The rum you use is key here, since it’s the main alcohol. Get a good, nice aged rum that you enjoy. Light rum may be too ‘thin’ for this, so instead try gold rum or dark rum. If you want to try spiced rum, keep in mind it may alter the taste a little.