Recently, we were out at a bar that offered a…
The banana dolphin is one of the great tiki garnishes of our time – though, admittedly, we are partial to a spent lime shell and a sprig of mint – and it never fails to get a reaction when you set it atop a drink. In our experience, you could put a banana dolphin on just about anything (including a cup of coffee) and make someone’s day. That said, we highly recommend setting it atop a tropical cocktail over any other beverages (unless you’re serving children, in which case a smoothie is a wonderful option) and put forth this Banana Dolphin Punch as an option that you can’t go wrong with.
The drink starts with a blend of white rum and pineapple rum. We have used El Dorado, Angostura and Flor de Cana white rums in this recipe with good results. The pineapple rum – and we highly recommend using Plantation Stiggins Fancy Pineapple Rum, if you are able to get your hands on a bottle, or Captain Morgan Pineapple, which is much easier to find and also has a strong pineapple flavor without being sweet – adds a lot of extra pineapple flavor without pumping the drink full of additional juice. We don’t recommend using a pre-sweetened pineapple rum (one of the low-alcohol brands) in this recipe, or the finished drink will be too sweet. The pineapple is complimented with banana liqueur, vanilla and lime.
The punch is smooth, fruity and refreshing. It’s easy to drink, but still has a nice punch to it, so you won’t feel like you are sipping juice alone. This is a great choice for a party because the drink requires no shaking and can be easily scaled up to fill a punch bowl. If you are scaling up the recipe to serve a crowd, don’t feel obligated to buy dozens of bananas to garnish each and every cup. In that case, just use a few of them to garnish the punch bowl, rather than individual cups. You’ll still get the oohs and aahs over the dolphins, as well as satisfied sighs as people taste the drink. Put the bowl out under some good lighting, too, since we suspect that your guests might try to snap at least a few pictures between rounds to share on social media.
Banana Dolphin Punch
1 oz white rum
1 oz pineapple rum
1/4 oz banana liqueur
1/4 oz simple syrup
3-4 drops vanilla extract
3/4 oz lime juice
2 oz pineapple juice
Fill a tall glass or tiki mug with crushed ice. Add in all ingredients and stir to combine. Top with additional crushed ice and garnish with a banana dolphin.