Cuba Libre: A Quick and Easy Caribbean Cocktail

cuba libre

It seemed the right time to talk about a Cuba Libre as the US begins to normalize relations with Cuba. In honor of this historic change, we bring you the Cuba Libre Cocktail. It has a rather interesting history that ties Bacardi (a once Cuban, now Puerto Rican rum) with Coca Cola and a whole lot of history….

A Short History – Sourced from Bacardi:

Hamilton, Bermuda, August 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — The legendary original Cuba Libre, more commonly called a “BACARDÍ and Coke®,” turns 112 years old this month. Since its inspiration and creation in Havana, Cuba, in 1900, this classic cocktail has become the most ordered cocktail in the world with seventy BACARDÍ Cuba Libre drinks enjoyed every second, every day around the world.

And yet, the drink that caused such a cocktail revolution was, appropriately enough, borne of revolutionary origins itself. The year was 1900, marking the end of Cuba’s War for Independence. It was this war, known as the Spanish-American War, which brought many Americans to Cuba, including future United States President Theodore Roosevelt, then a Colonel in his regiment popularly known as the Rough Riders. These Americans had also brought Coca-Cola® with them to Cuba, and soon it had become a popular beverage among Cubans and Americans alike. While celebrating Cuba’s victory at The American Bar in Havana, a U.S. Army Signal Corps captain decided to combine his Cuban BACARDI Rum with Coca-Cola® and the squeeze of a fresh lime, sparking interest among others bar patrons. Soon the entire bar was drinking this enticing, new combination. The captain proposed a toast of “¡Por Cuba libre!” (For a Free Cuba)—a phrase of particular political significance used frequently as the battle cry by Cuban revolutionaries and Americans soldiers alike. The name caught on, and stuck. Today, the Cuba Libre cocktail is globally recognized as containing BACARDI rum, cola and lime juice.

“The fact that the Cuba Libre cocktail, distinctively but simply made with BACARDI rum, cola and fresh lime juice, is the world’s favorite cocktail and continues to gain popularity after 112 years speaks to the exceptional quality and great taste BACARDÍ rum adds to this iconic drink,” said Facundo L. Bacardi, Chairman of Bacardi Limited and great-great grandson of the Bacardi founder. “Taste and superior quality, along with the mixability of BACARDÍ rum, remain key to our phenomenal success and position today as the world’s favorite and most awarded rum brand.”

Instructions for a Cuba Libre:

2 parts BACARDI Rum
4 parts Coca-Cola®
2 lime wedges
Ice cubes

Mix and Serve.

A variation of the Cuba Libre popular in the West Indies is a “Hot” Cuba Libre which includes a splash of Caribbean hot sauce. Pair it with our Red Savina Citrus Slammer pepper sauce for an out-of-this –world combination.


This article was written by Captain Tim and the Crew of Caribbean Trading Company.

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Red Savina Citrus Slammer Crushed Pepper Sauce

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