Today is National Piña Colada Day.
The piña colada has been the official beverage of Puerto Rico since 1978.
Whilst there are many contested stories about the drinks origin:
- 19th century Pirate Roberto Cofresí (El Pirata Cofresí), is said to have created the drink to boost morale of his crew, but took the recipe to his deathbed in 1825.
- The earliest known reference to a drink called piña colada is from TRAVEL magazine, December 1922.
Three Puerto Rican bartenders contest the ownership of their national drink:
- Ramón ‘Monchito’ Marrero Pérez claims to have first made it at the Caribe Hilton Hotel’s Beachcomber Bar in San Juan on 15 August 1952
- Ricardo García, who also worked at the Caribe, says that it was he who invented the drink
- Ramón Portas Mingot says he created it in 1963 at the Barrachina Restaurant, 104 Fortaleza Street, Old San Juan. The restaurant stands by his claim to this day.
This cocktail rose to prominence in Puerto Rico around the mid 1970’s, and it became more widely known after Rupert Holmes released his 1979 song “Escape”, commonly known as “The Piña Colada Song”.
Best Pina Colada recipe:
4 oz. Coco López Cream of Coconut
4 oz. pineapple juice
3 oz. Bacardi Superior Rum
½ oz. Bacardi Select Rum
2 cups ice
Combine all ingredients, except the Bacardi Select, in a blender. Blend till smooth, serve in traditional glass. Top with Bacardi Select and garnish with a cherry and pineapple wedge. Serves 2.