Serving It Up Island Style with Tropical Drinks

Tropical drinks enjoyed on the beach

Right about now, a tropical vacation on a warm, sunny beach sounds like a dream come true. But, let’s face it, jetting off to an island somewhere in the tropics might not be in the cards for a variety of reasons. At Columbia Distributing, the premier Northwest beverage distributor, we deliver your favorite alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and mixers to local retailers and restaurants so you can enjoy tropical drinks that will carry you away to a beachy destination, if only in your imagination. Here are some of our favorite recipes to help you serve it up, island style.

Piña Colada

Nothing says tropical vacation like a piña colada. Originally from Puerto Rico, this tasty tropical drink is made with pineapple juice, cream of coconut or coconut milk, and rum. It is typically garnished with a pineapple wedge and maraschino cherries. Here’s how much you’ll need of each of these sweet ingredients:

  • 3 ounces of pineapple juice
  • 1 ounce of rum
  • 1 ounce of coconut cream or coconut milk

You can either blend the ingredients or shake them up with ice. Piña coladas are typically served in a Poco Grande glass, with its characteristic curvaceous body, but we won’t snitch if you serve it in a pint glass with a little umbrella.

Mai Tai

Another great-tasting rum drink, the mai tai is an excellent tropical drink choice for beach-themed get-togethers. This citrusy drink is refreshing and easy to make. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1-1/2 ounces of white rum
  • 3/4 ounce of dark rum
  • 1/2 ounce of fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 ounce of orange curaçao
  • 1/2 ounce of orgeat syrup

You’ll want to shake everything, except the dark rum, together in a mixer and strain it into a highball glass filled with ice. The final step is to float the dark rum on top and garnish with a lime peel or a delicious pineapple spear.

The Blue Hawaii

Notable for its blue color and beautiful presentation in a hurricane glass topped off with an umbrella, the blue Hawaii is known for more than a 1961 Elvis Presley film. There’s no denying this drink will add fun to any party. To get the festivities started, you’ll need:

  • 3/4 ounce vodka
  • 3/4 ounce light rum
  • 1/2 ounce blue curaçao
  • 3 ounces pineapple juice
  • 1 ounce sweet-and-sour mix

Shake it all together and pour it over crushed or pebbled ice. Add a pineapple wedge, and don’t forget the umbrella. It isn’t the same without one!

Non-Alcoholic Tropical Drinks

As you may have noticed, most tropical drinks are built around rum. It makes sense, since rum was originally distilled in the Caribbean starting in the 17th century. But, if you want a delicious tropical-style beverage without the rum, what do you do? Luckily, there are hundreds of tropical mocktails out there to choose from.

For example, this non-alcoholic hurricane removes the rum and replaces it with fruit juices. Shake up these ingredients with ice and strain it over crushed ice in a classic hurricane glass.

  • 1 ounce orange juice
  • 1/2 ounce grapefruit juice
  • 1/2 ounce passion fruit syrup
  • 6 ounces V-8 Tropical Blend
  • 1/2 ounce amaretto syrup (such as Torani)

Escape to Paradise with Tropical Drinks

Whether your tropical drinks are flavored with delicious rum or not, you can find everything you need to plan your escape to paradise from the comfort of your own home by shopping with retailers that carry brands from Columbia Distributing. In addition to the ingredients you need for mixed drinks, we also supply a wide variety of bottled drinks that can give you the tropical flavor you’re craving. To learn more about how our vast selection keeps stores stocked in Oregon, Washington, and California with your favorite beverages, contact us today.