Daiquiri – El Floridita No. 1

Classic rum-based cocktail from the historic El Floridita in Havana, Cuba.

Daiquiri – El Floridita No. 1

by Bill Lau | potablepastime.com

I’m going out on a limb here (admittedly not a very long one) and guessing that when most people think “Daiquiri” they picture a frozen blended concoction, often sweet with a distinct fruit flavor (strawberry, peach, mango, what-have-you). This is not that drink. This is the classic, traditional, old school, straight up, kick-your-ass rum-based cocktail that Ernest Hemingway knew and loved, hailing from the El Floridita fish restaurant and bar in pre-Castro Cuba. As with many of these types of drinks, it is not especially sweet; though there is sweetness enough to balance the tart citrus component, and plenty of booze. So, what’s not to like?

It can certainly be turned into a frozen version, which can then serve as the launching pad for an endless variety of cocktails featuring any number of fresh fruits (pineapple was an old favorite of mine; used to order those at the Let’s Make a Daiquiri kiosk in the rehabbed Union Station in St Louis, MO back in the ’80s). I always like to get back to the originals, though, and they can be quite eye-opening if you’ve never tried them before.

I have to give a nod to the excellent book Cuban Cocktails by Ravi DeRossi, Jane Danger & Alla Lapushchik, from whence I found this particular recipe. They include a number of different variations of the Daiquiri, along with some very interesting history and tidbits of information on this and so many other great cocktails. I highly recommend it!

Daiquiri – El Floridita No. 1


  • 2 oz light rum (I used Cruzan – it’s my basic barstock light rum)
  • 3/4 oz maraschino cherry liqueur (Luxardo)
  • 3/4 oz freshly squeezed lime juice


  1. Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
  2. Shake vigorously for 15-20 seconds.
  3. Strain into a chilled coupe glass and garnish with a lime wheel, maraschino cherry (I used one soaked in moonshine – yummy!), or both and serve.

Daiquiri - El Floridita #1

Disclosure: The author has received no reimbursement or compensation for this article. All comments, brand suggestions, and remarks are those of the author alone.


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