July 22, 2022

How to Make the Most Luxurious Rum Old Fashioned

The classic combination of booze, bitters, and sweetness gets a more tropical flare with this delicious rum variation.

pouring the rum old fashioned into a rocks glass

The Old Fashioned is a recipe as old as cocktails themselves.

Three ingredients, spirit, bitters, and sugar. That's it.

But that combination is more of a template begging to be tinkered with than it is a recipe. The combinations of base spirit, bitters and different sweeteners are endless so think of this rum version as a jumping off point for even more experimenting at your home bar.

measuring dark rum for an old fashioned

Choosing your rum

Just like any other spirit the differences between rums will play a big part in the flavor of your finished drink.

Any style will work from vibrant Jamaican pot still to funky fresh cane rum from Martinique, my only suggestion is that you choose something barrel aged and non charcoal filtered.

That just means you'll be looking for something dark in color with a number of years aged printed on the bottle. These rums will have more vanilla, oak, and baking spice notes from the barrels they aged in that will work great as the base in a simple cocktail.

stirring in a mixing glass

Variations on the Rum Old Fashioned

After you've chosen a rum you can still tweak the sugar, bitters and even the citrus garnish.

As a starting point try using Angostura bitters. The bottle is a staple for mixing all sorts of drinks and its' warm allspice flavors pair so nicely with an aged rum. 

Since the rum and sugar in the Old Fashioned won't bring in clashing flavors you can also try any number of other bitters. Orange, grapefruit, chili pepper, or chocolate would all compliment a nice rum, but get crazy with it and try any bitters you want!

garnishing with orange peel

what simple syrup should you use?

The standard 1:1 sugar to water simple syrup will work great, but to squeeze in just a little more rich caramelized flavor it's nice to use Demerara Syrup

Instead of using plain white sugar make your simple syrup with Demerara or Turbinado sugar. The subtle molasses flavors are awesome in all sorts of cocktails so you can store the extra in your fridge for up to two weeks or so.

finished rum old fashioned

Feeling a little extra frisky? Try garnishing with lime or grapefruit peel instead of the classic orange.

Rum Old Fashioned

Using rum in place of the standard whiskey creates a beautiful Old Fashioned with a unique flare


  • 2 oz Rum - Dark Aged
  • 1 barspoon Simple Syrup
  • 2 dashes Bitters
  • Orange Peel for garnish


  • Add the bitters, simple syrup, and rum to a mixing glass
  • Add ice and stir until chilled and diluted (about 30 seconds)
  • Strain into a chilled coupe glass or a rocks glass with ice.
  • Squeeze the oils from a piece of orange peel over the finished drink and drop in for garnish


A dark rum is delicious for this drink because the spice and vanilla notes will go great with bitters and the sweetness of the syrup. You can use any style you enjoy.
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Course: Drinks
Servings: 1 drink
Tag me at @mydrinkinghobby when you make this!

Share this recipe

Rum Old Fashioned Pin

More Delicious Things!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}