BEST Dark and Stormy Cocktail Recipe (+ Tips!)

This Dark and Stormy recipe makes the ideal version of this drink! Use this ratio and tips for the best 2-ingredient cocktail with dark rum.

Combine dark rum and ginger beer and you’ve got a classic Dark and Stormy in 1 minute.

Bottoms up!

What is a Dark and Stormy cocktail?

The Dark and Stormy cocktail was invented in Bermuda. Rum originated in the Caribbean and is made from fermented sugarcane. British naval officers stationed in Bermuda popularized the Dark and Stormy. Sailors often combine local dark rum with homemade ginger beer. 

The Gosling Brothers company trademarked the “Dark ‘N Stormy” drink name. The classic cocktail is made with Goslings Black Seal Rum and their Goslings ginger beer.

The Dark and Stormy cocktail has a ‘stormy’ visual effect where dark rum floats on top of the lighter colored ginger beer–hence the name!

Mix up the right Dark and Stormy ratio

To making the best Dark and Stormy recipe: use the right ratio to get just the right flavor combination! The Dark and Stormy ratio is:

  • 6 oz. Goslings Stormy Ginger Beer
  • 2 oz. Goslings Black Seal Rum

Feel free to adjust the ratio to your tastes! But above is the standard ratio. Mix it up and place it in a highball glass: and you’ve got yourself a Dark and Stormy.

Dark and Stormy Ingredients

  • Dark Rum: Traditionally, Goslings Black Seal Rum is used, known for its rich color, full flavor, and smooth finish. However, other dark rums with similar characteristics can be substituted (see my previous response for alternatives).
  • Ginger Beer: Choose a high-quality ginger beer with a strong ginger flavor and natural ingredients. Popular brands include Gosling’s Ginger Beer, Fever-Tree Ginger Beer, and Reed’s Ginger Beer.
  • Lime Wedge: For garnish, adds a touch of acidity and freshness.
  • Ice: Crushed or cubed ice works well.

Different types of dark rum!

Other than Goslings, there are several types of dark rum you can use to vary this drink:

  • Myers’s Original Dark Rum: Similar in color and sweetness to Black Seal, but with spicier notes of molasses and caramel. May overpower the ginger beer depending on the brand.
  • Cruzan Black Strap Rum: Richer molasses flavor compared to Black Seal, leading to a sweeter and bolder Dark and Stormy. Adjust proportions accordingly.
  • Mount Gay Eclipse Black Barrel Rum: Smooth and slightly smokey option, offering a different flavor profile but complementing the ginger beer well.
  • Bumbu XO Rum: Aged rum with notes of vanilla, oak, and spice. Adds complexity and depth to the drink, though less traditional in style.

Each rum has a unique flavor profile, so your Dark and Stormy will have a slightly different taste compared to the traditional version. I LOVE exploring new rum expressions!

The darker the rum, the better, for this. I like Kraken, although some find it a bit spicy for a Dark and Stormy.

Best ginger beer for a Dark and Stormy

I’ve yet to meet anyone who sits on the fence about ginger beer–you either love it or hate it. Ginger beer is a typically non-alcoholic and spiced carbonated drink, closer to a root beer than a hard seltzer. Ginger beer is not the same as ginger ale.

My favorite ginger beer

Goslings Stormy Ginger Beer–for a true Dark and Stormy.

Goslings Ginger Beer has a bit of bite and spice that I appreciate in the herbal soda formula. I believe this ginger beer has the right amount of zing due to it’s balance between sweet and spicy.

More ginger beer contenders for a Dark and Stormy

Here are a few ideas — try using:

  • Barritts: I’m a fan of Barritts because it’s one of the styles that’s great for sipping and making an alternative (if not truly authentic) Dark ‘n Stormy cocktail. The spice is minimal, and the sweetness is balanced thanks to the real cane sugar.
  • Fever Tree: Fever Tree is perfect for dark rum or even fruitier rum-based cocktails.

These are ginger beers you can find at most supermarkets, local wholesalers, or on Amazon.

I find that some bars swap ginger ale for ginger beer. Nooo!! It’s a different mixer, and while its pleasant with rum, it’s no substitute for a proper Dark and Stormy cocktail.

Use lime to balance the flavors

The Dark and Stormy doesn’t require lime juice. But the flavor of any drink with rum begs for brightness from citrus.

Simply squeeze juice from a lime into the ginger beer before you add it to the drink–it makes the flavor more interesting! You can also use lemon.

How to make the best Dark and Stormy

Here are a few tips to making just the right version of a Dark and Stormy. There are three tips for the very best version of this drink…ready?

  • Chilled Glass: Dark and Stormy is typically served in a highball glass. I love to serve my Dark and Stormy in a chilled lowball glass or copper mug (like the ones used for Moscow Mules). A chilled glass/mug keeps the drink cold and adds sophistication.
  • Freshness: For parties, keep the carbonated ginger beer and ice separate to maintain crispness and fizz in each serving!
  • Ratios: I like to adjust my rum to ginger beer ratio according to my taste preference. I also add extra lime juice for a boost in citrus flavor.

Dark and Stormy FAQs

How do I create the ‘stormy’ effect in my Dark and Stormy cocktail? 

Chill your glass, a cold glass helps maintain the fizz and creates a visual contrast with the dark rum. Pour the rum over ice first, then slowly pour the ginger beer. Use smaller crushed ice, it melts faster, creating a ‘stormy’ effect.

Should I use fresh lime juice in my Dark and Stormy? 

Yes, using fresh lime juice in your Dark ‘N’ Stormy gives it a perfect zesty kick. Plus, it helps to cut through the rich dark rum and spicy ginger beer – making the cocktail taste even more refreshing!

Are there any nutrition facts to consider? 

While I’m not an expert, here are estimated nutrition facts for a classic Dark and Stormy.

  • Calories: 200-250
  • Carbohydrates: 20-25g (mostly from sugar in the ginger beer)
  • Sugar: 18-23g
  • Sodium: 10-20mg

Cheers!

Dark and Stormy

Servings

1

servings
Prep time

1

minute
Cooking timeminutes

Ingredients

  • 6 oz. Goslings Stormy Ginger Beer

  • 2 oz. Goslings Black Seal Rum

  • (optional) Lime wedge

Instructions

  • Fill a tall glass with ice, then pour the ginger beer and float the rum on top.
  • Stir until it looks like a storm cloud.
  • Garnish with a lime wedge (optional)

Notes

  • For extra flair, combine the ginger beer and lime juice, and float the rum on top.
  • Plunge a swizzle stick or straw through the ice when serving. It gives the effect of storm clouds.
  • You can also use a Moscow Mule mug

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