Piña Colada is a cocktail recognized across the globe. In the U.S., they celebrate National Piña Colada Day every July 10, while, in India, everyone has tasted the Virgin Piña Colada at least once in their lives.
With its rich taste and colorful history, Piña Colada takes the spotlight as a must-try cocktail today. Before you take a sip of a homemade version of the tropical cocktail, here are some interesting facts about the famous Piña Colada.
History of the Piña Colada
It is known that Puerto Rico is the place of origin of the Piña Colada. From here, there are many stories that offer their own versions to explain its history.
A popular legend follows the story of Roberto Cofresi, a wealthy man born in Puerto Rico who turned into a pirate following the state’s fall in the 1800s. It was told that Cofresi offered his crewmates a beverage made with white rum, coconut, and pineapples. He had offered the drink in an attempt to lift his crewmate’s moods.
A more widely accepted version of the story used to explain the creation of the Piña Colada involves a bartender named “Monchito.” Ramon “Monchito” Marrero is a bartender who worked in the Caribe Hilton Hotel’s Beachcomber Bar in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The hotel asked “Monchito” to make a new recipe for a signature mixed drink for the hotel. After three months of perfecting the drink, the Piña Colada was first served by the hotel in 1954.
The Governor of Puerto Rico presented the Caribe Hilton Hotel a proclamation during the Piña Colada’s 50th anniversary in 2004. After all the stories told and the growth of the drink’s popularity, Puerto Rico declared the Piña Colada its national drink in 1978.
What’s in a Piña Colada?
The Piña Colada is a cocktail made from blended coconut cream, white rum, and pineapple juice. This popular tropical cocktail is garnished with fruits like cherries and pineapples and is usually made with a large amount of crushed ice. It is more commonly served in a vase-shaped glass known as the hurricane glass.
Interestingly, the name Piña Colada is derived from Spanish words meaning “strained pineapple” (or fresh pineapple juice). Piña means “pineapple,” while Colada means “strained.” This also explains why pineapple juice is an essential ingredient in the cocktail.
The traditional variant of the Piña Colada can have as much as 650 calories. You can find the drink in the menus of almost every Tiki bar. Because of Tiki culture, the drink is known to be served fresh inside a fresh coconut shell or a freshly cut pineapple.
The cocktail’s sweet and creamy texture is what makes it a popular, refreshing cocktail that helps you beat the heat during summer.
Piña Colada Fan Base
In 1979, Rupert Holmes released a song called “Escape (The Piña Colada Song).” The song became quite popular and paved the way for the cocktail to gain a huge amount of attention. Despite the song’s success, Holmes admitted that he never really liked the drink and called them medicinal.
There are other songs that mention the Piña Colada in their lyrics. Among them are: “I Really Mean It” by The Diplomats, “Jeans and Sneakers” by Notorious B.I.G. ft. Black Bob, and “Tonite” by DJ Quick.
In addition, a Jazz icon named Charles Frank Mangione released a tune entitled “Piña Colada” as part of a 1979 album.
Variations of the Piña Colada
Although the Piña Colada is a classic cocktail, there are several variations of the cocktail made worldwide.
Some of the most popular variants include:
- Chi Chi – uses vodka instead of rum
- Jackolada – made with half-part Jack Daniels and half-part white rum
- Virgin Piña Colada – non-alcohol variant (mocktail)
- Blue Hawaiian – adds blue curacao to the classic recipe
- Soda Piña Colada – a fizzy variant that uses soda instead of coconut milk
- Iguana Colada – made with Midori
- Tequila Colada – uses tequila instead of white rum
- Miami Vice – half Piña Colada, half strawberry daiquiri
- Kahlua Colada – uses the coffee liqueur Kahlua to substitute rum
Piña Colada Recipe
If you want to know how to make the Piña Colada at home, here is an easy recipe that you can make and serve your guests on a relaxing afternoon.
In contrast to the poolside-bar version that is usually full of preservatives and added sugars, the following recipe includes zero added sweeteners and is naturally delicious and refreshing as ever.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Crushed ice
- 60 ml white rum
- 40 ml pineapple juice
- 40 ml coconut cream/coconut milk
- Garnishes (optional): maraschino cherries, pineapple leaf, fresh pineapple wedges, small paper umbrellas
- Mix all the ingredients together in a blender, then puree until a smooth texture is achieved. If the mixture is too thick, add extra coconut milk or water to help with blending.
- Serve immediately in a hurricane glass, topped with your favorite garnishes.
Satisfy Your Taste Buds With Fine-Tasting Drinks Today
The Piña Colada wouldn’t be complete without a nice bottle of liquor on hand, and we have the best brands in store for you!
Village Warehouse Wine & Spirits is a full-service liquor store in Avon, Colorado. Apart from serving you with a wide selection of spirits across the globe, we also make it a point to offer you good advice to improve your drinking experience. For inquiries, contact us today!