Mocha Spiced Rum Russian

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Cocktail History

The Mocha Spiced Rum Russian is a Sips From Scripts original Christmas cocktail that we created to use Tattersall Distilling’s Blackstrap Rum in a recipe for a holiday sampling event we attended. It takes this particular rum’s aggressively funky flavor profile and mellows it out with plenty of sweetness thanks to our homemade pumpkin spice syrup and other sweet ingredients, and it has a noticeable coffee note that adds another layer of delicious flavor.

Cocktail Ingredients

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Blackstrap Rum: This is the base spirit. We went with Tattersall Distilling’s Blackstrap Rum because of its rich and smoky vanilla flavors as well as hints of tobacco and cream. Plus, it’s locally made.

Jamaican Rum: This is the other base spirit. It balances out the uniqueness of the blackstrap rum and adds more complex flavors. We used Wray & Nephew Overproof White Rum because it’s high-quality and lends unique vanilla, banana, coconut, and molasses flavors that pair well with the other ingredients in this recipe.

Pumpkin Spice Syrup: This gives the cocktail its pumpkin and baking spice flavors. We make our syrup using Alex’s sous vide recipe.

Galliano Ristretto: This is a liqueur that adds unique and indulgent coffee flavor. If you can’t find Galliano Ristretto, you can substitute other brands of coffee liqueur such as Mr. Black Cold Brew Coffee Liqueur or Kahlúa.

Heavy Cream: This gives the drink its creamy texture. We typically use half & half instead because it’s flavorful while still being lighter on the calories, but you can also use heavy cream or milk.

Caramel Sauce: This adds caramel flavor and sweetens the drink. We used Torani Caramel Sauce, but you can also make this at home if you’re feeling adventurous.

Coffee & Cocoa Bitters: This is a type of spirit infused with coffee beans, cocoa, and botanicals. They bring out more chocolate flavor and add spice to the drink for more complexity. We went with Crude Bitters Big Bear Coffee & Cocoa Bitters.

Coffee Beans: These are the garnishes. They float on top of the drink and add a bit more mocha aroma.

Tasting Notes

The Mocha Spiced Rum Russian features coffee and rum aromas, has an incredibly creamy mouthfeel which includes a blend of the Galliano Ristretto Liqueur’s unique coffee flavors balanced with a bit of pumpkin and caramel sweetness, and goes with a strong finish on a loud, funky rum note.

Our Opinion of This Cocktail Recipe: While the version we served at our table used Kahlua instead of Galliano Ristretto and a full ounce and a half of the blackstrap rum, we opted for the more unique coffee liqueur and dialed back the rum a touch to make up for using less sugar when making this one at home. We both found this beverage to be a top-notch Russian variation perfect for seasonal sipping. 

Alex’s Take: “This is a cocktail I created to serve at a local grocery store’s Christmas sampling event. I wanted to make a crowd-pleasing cocktail that would be enjoyable to those who didn’t live and breathe cocktails like we do, so I thought a cream-based Russian would do the trick. I did still want to make it unique though, so we landed on a spiced rum that the store stocks and our pumpkin spice syrup. When we arrived at the store, it turned out we didn’t have access to a spiced rum and instead ran with a blackstrap rum from local distillery Tattersall Distilling that had a seriously funky flavor. We ended up with a cocktail that was not only still delicious but incredibly unique.”

Kendall’s Take: “If you’re looking for the most perfectly balanced fall or Christmas coffee cocktail, this is it! I don’t usually enjoy the taste of coffee anything because I find it to be too bitter, but it’s so muted in this drink that I found it incredibly sippable. Using rum instead of vodka in the Russian was also a nice change; you can definitely tell it’s there. If wanting a White Russian that’s more seasonal, definitely whip this version I up!”

Recipe

AuthorSips From ScriptsPrep Time5 minsRating

Ingredients
 1 oz Blackstrap Rum
 ½ oz Jamaican Rum
 1 oz Galliano Ristretto Coffee Liqueur
 ¾ oz Heavy Cream
 ½ tsp Caramel Sauce
 1 dash Crude Bitters Big Bear Coffee & Cocoa Bitters
 3 Coffee Beans

Method
1

Add blackstrap rum, Jamaican rum, pumpkin spice syrup, coffee liqueur, heavy cream, caramel sauce, coffee & cocoa bitters, and ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Strain into a cocktail glass.

4

Garnish with coffee beans.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 1 oz Blackstrap Rum
 ½ oz Jamaican Rum
 1 oz Galliano Ristretto Coffee Liqueur
 ¾ oz Heavy Cream
 ½ tsp Caramel Sauce
 1 dash Crude Bitters Big Bear Coffee & Cocoa Bitters
 3 Coffee Beans

Directions

Method
1

Add blackstrap rum, Jamaican rum, pumpkin spice syrup, coffee liqueur, heavy cream, caramel sauce, coffee & cocoa bitters, and ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Strain into a cocktail glass.

4

Garnish with coffee beans.

Mocha Spiced Rum Russian

Tools & Glassware We Recommend

More Christmas Cocktails

If you like this Christmas cocktail recipe, here are a few others we’ve tried that you may enjoy:

Candy Cane Martini: A vodka cocktail made with white crème de cacao, white crème de menthe, simple syrup, and crushed candy cane

Hot Peppermint Patty: A hot cocoa cocktail made with skim milk, white peppermint schnapps, dark crème de cacao, cocoa powder, whipped cream, and grated chocolate

Winter Berry Gin Fizz: A gin cocktail made with lime juice, cranberry syrup, raspberry liqueur, soda water, cranberries, and rosemary

Cranberry Cobbler: A marsala sherry cocktail made with cranberry syrup, orange slices, an orange wedge, mint, and cranberries

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