DIY Pineapple Rum
Homemade Pineapple Rum Recipe
During the 2014 Tales of the Cocktail, Alexandre Gabriel of Cognac Ferrand brought a special product to share with the bartenders in attendance. The product was a pineapple rum called Stiggin’s Fancy, named for a character in Charles Dickens’ Pickwick Papers who despite his preaching to the contrary, quite enjoyed pineapple rum. The libation was popular in Victorian England, but fell out of fashion thereafter.
Alexandre wanted to try and revive this forgotten spirit, so he teamed up with noted drinks historian David Wondrich to recreate it. They found some inspiring information in the 1824 English Journal of Patent and Inventions and the 1844 Journal of Agricultural Society. Of course, they had their own ideas as well; consider who we’re dealing with here. After trying several varieties of pineapples, they fittingly settled on the Queen Victoria. Macerating the pineapple in Plantation Dark rum for three months imparted the flavors fully, but they did not stop there. The pineapple rinds were also macerated for three months to extract the oils. This rind-infused macerate was then re-distilled and added back to the pineapple-infused rum to add brightness and complexity.
Sounds pretty great right? It is. It tastes like fresh, sweet pineapple-infused rum, but it’s balanced with the bright notes from the rind. It drinks splendidly on its own, and makes a helluva Daiquiri, too.
The problem? It’s technically not for sale. You see, Ferrand only released 1,000 bottles of it. If you find a bar that buys a lot of Plantation rum, Citadelle gin, and Ferrand Cognac, then you have a good chance of locating a taste of this magical elixir. Otherwise, you’re probably out of luck. I have had several glasses of the stuff, but I wasn’t able to score my own bottle, so I began thinking of creating a similar flavor at home. After making several batches, I thought I’d share my process with you. It might not be Stiggin’s Fancy, but it’s pretty damned tasty, and it’s dead simple to make. I call it “Hella Fancy”.
Hella Fancy Pineapple-Infused Rum Recipe
- 1 fresh, ripe pineapple
- 2 bottles Plantation Original Dark rum
- 3 oz. simple syrup (1:1)
- 1 Gallon jar with tight-fitting lid (or similar container)
- Two tight-mesh strainers
Step 1: Wash the pineapple
Step 2: Cut off the top and bottom of the pineapple
Step 3: Slice the pineapple into large chunks
Step 4: Place the pineapple into the jar and cover with the rum.
Step 5: Store the jar in a dark place for 48 hours (shake vigorously after 24 hours).
Step 6: Remove pineapple chunks from the jar. (See notes below)
Step 7: Add simple syrup, replace jar lid and shake well. (See notes below)
Step 8: Double strain into the rum bottles.
Step 9: Alter the labels appropriately.
Step 10: Refrigerate and enjoy! (See notes below)
- Very ripe pineapples work best.
- After removing pineapple chunks, taste the infusion. If it is lacking in pineapple flavor, squeeze some (or all) of the liquid from the pineapple chunks back into the jar. If you do this, you’ll need additional bottling capacity.
- The sweetness of the infusion is very dependent on the sugar content of the pineapple. Adjust the amount of simple syrup to suit your particular pineapple and your own taste.
- With respect to storage, I’m confident this infusion could be safely stored at room temperature if kept out of natural light. However, it tastes best cold, so you might as well store it in the refrigerator to preserve the fresh flavor for as long as possible and keep it ready-to-drink.
- If you don’t have access to Plantation Dark rum, use another rum of your choosing. I’ve made this same infusion using Appleton VX, and it came out beautifully (I still prefer the Plantation Dark, however).
- “Hella Fancy” makes a great Daiquiri, but it also tastes great on its own. Add a touch more sweetness and/or some bitters if you are so inclined–it makes for a quick and tasty tropical cocktail.
- The colloidal pineapple material will settle with time (faster with refrigeration). Make sure to shake the bottle well before serving, and don’t worry about the floaties. You did that.
Have you made your own pineapple rum? How about another rum infusion? Please share your thoughts with us below.