Navy Grog

Navy Grog cocktail in a double old fashioned glass

Shake with ice and strain into a chilled rocks glass. Alternatively shake with ice and strain into a double old-fashioned glass and fill with crushed ice. Garnish with a mint bouquet or, for authenticity, garnish with an ice cone.

The name is clearly a reference to the practice of serving a rum ration twice daily on ships of the Royal Navy up until 1970. The recipe, however, bears no resemblance other than it contains both rum and lime juice. It was created by Donn Beach in the 1930s as a drink with a more masculine appeal compared to many of his other Tiki offerings. The ice cone garnish also comes from Donn and clearly we are going to need a little more practice at it.

Navy Grog cocktail with an ice cone garnish The Navy Grog was widely copied and the recipe above comes from Trader Vic in the 1940s via Smuggler's Cove. He replaced Donn's honey syrup and soda water with Demerara syrup and pimento dram. The strange quantities in the recipe above come from the fact that we converted it from a drink with 3 oz of rum to a more pre-dinner friendly 2 oz. To get back to the original 3 oz just increase everything by 50%.

This is a wonderful classic Tiki drink that definitely distinguishes itself from the fruit punches. There's a definite spiciness from the pimento dram but it is hard to identify a specific flavor—everything melds so well. You might get a little 'funkiness' from the navy rum depending on which brand you use. We highly recommend Smith & Cross Traditional Jamaican Rum. The drink is traditionally served over crushed ice. It works well served this way but can get over diluted toward the end. The recipe also works very well shaken with ice and served straight up.