Tropical Liqueurs That Taste Like a VacationBy Anna Archibald
With the holidays long gone and an unmistakable winter gloom starting to set in, it’s hard not to find yourself daydreaming of a sun drenched beach holiday. We’d all rather be galavanting around Tahiti or snorkeling in the Virgin Islands, but we’ll settle for a vibrant, tropical cocktail made in the comfort of our own home. As the temperatures dip below freezing, put on your favorite beach movie (might we recommend Forgetting Sarah Marshall?) and reach for these tropical liqueurs that are packed with the flavors of summer.
Whether you’re a fan of banana daiquiris or a sucker for the classic New Orleanian bananas foster, this French liqueur ought to be at the top of your list. Sure to provide a glassful of summer cheer, this liqueur is beloved by bartenders for its spot-on banana flavors and mixability. This 50-proof tropical liqueur is made from macerated Brazilian bananas. Its intense fruit flavor is complemented by a touch of cognac. This adds just enough warmth to make it just as easy to sip over ice or in a cocktail.
Rum is often the most obvious liquor to choose when it comes to mixing a tropical cocktail. That’s because so many wonderful rums are made in the most beautiful, beach-rimmed islands of the Caribbean. Such is the case with this rum-based liqueur from The Bitter Truth. Flavored with traditional lime, almond and spices, this honey-hued falernum also puts ginger and additional citrus to work. This tropical liqueur has just enough bite for tiki drinks and more than enough pizazz to liven up classic cocktails. Try in a rum-based Old Fashioned.
Dreaming of kicking back on a sunny beach in Mexico? Complete the daydream with a glass of this delightfully tart liqueur. When added to a Gin & Tonic, Gimlet, or simply mixed with soda water, this dreamy hibiscus liqueur is transformative. Flecked with flavors of tamarind, jasmine and lemon, it adds just a hint of agua fresca to your cocktails.
Aloe may not be the first flavor to come to mind when considering an island getaway, or a liqueur for that matter. But these refreshing succulents quench thirst like no other. Chareau managed to capture aloe’s delicate flavor beautifully, presenting it alongside equally crisp and refreshing ingredients like cucumber, lemon rind, muskmelon and mint. This cumulatively delightful essence is captured in a base of unaged brandy for an even fruitier, flavor-charged result.
Rum and mango are a match made in an idyllic tropical getaway—in this case, a beach on the coast of India. Inspired by mango lassi, a creamy Indian drink flavored with spices, this cream fruit liqueur gets its unmistakable flavor from Alphonso mangoes—often referred to as the “king of mangoes”—which are native to India. This liqueur’s texture is reminiscent of blended tropical drinks that come with a tiny umbrella in tow. Blend it up with rum and ice for a spirited take on the lassi and a wonderful remedy for sub-zero temperatures and general wintertime gloom.