Drinks Summer

Hemingway’s Daiquiri

hemingway's daiquiri | the vanilla bean blog
The Sun Also Rises was the first Hemingway novel I read. His short stories made a brief appearance in my high school career but were instantly shelved; the subject matter was a too dark for a 16-year old ray of sunshine who secretly still read Nancy Drew mysteries. The Sun Also Rises is rather bleak as well, but there was no choice about reading as a five page paper was required to go along with it. I read the book in an entire day (that pesky paper was due the following morning), and found myself equally loving and hating Hemingway. He is genius about throwing in the most brilliant sentence or two just when you least see it coming. He sneaks it in so well, weaving it into conversation or description so quickly and quietly in his unpretentious prose. It will derail you in a put-the-book-down-for-just-a-minute-I’m-having-an-ah!-moment kind of way, and then you’re back, half caring about characters and storyline, mildly depressed and needing a drink.
hemingway's daiquiri | the vanilla bean blog
hemingway's daiquiri | the vanilla bean blog
hemingway's daiquiri | the vanilla bean blog
hemingway's daiquiri | the vanilla bean blog
hemingway's daiquiri | the vanilla bean blog
hemingway's daiquiri | the vanilla bean blog
My brother-in-law Dave came over recently and made Hemingway’s daiquiri. There’s nothing sweet or slushy about his version, but I think that’s appropriate. Grapefruit juice, lime juice, rum, and maraschino liqueur are all shaken together and poured into ice cold cups. It’s a drink that grows on you. I found myself cringing at the first taste, enjoying it as it went down, and interested enough in the aftertaste to take another sip. It was really just like reading Hemingway.

“Don’t you ever get the feeling that all your life is going by and you’re not taking advantage of it? Do you realize you’ve lived nearly half the time you have to live already?”
“Yes, every once in a while.”
“Do you know that in about thirty-five more years we’ll be dead?”
“What the hell, Robert,” I said. “What the hell.”
“I’m serious.”
“It’s one thing I don’t worry about,” I said.
“You ought to.”
“I’ve had plenty to worry about one time or other. I’m through worrying.”
“Well, I want to go to South America.”
“Listen, Robert, going to another country doesn’t make any difference. I’ve tried all that. You can’t get away from yourself by moving from one place to another. There’s nothing to that.”
“But you’ve never been to South America.”
“South America hell! If you went there the way you feel now it would be exactly the same. This is a good town. Why don’t you start living your life in Paris?”
-Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises

Hemingway Daiquiri

We used this recipe from Food & Wine to make the daiquiri.
Forage Modern Workshop sent me the Mason Jar Shaker pictured.

Also, my story (with video) on Steller:


  • Reply
    Boozy Epicure
    Saturday, October 4, 2014 at 10:15 am

    I’m a newbie to rum, but I need to make this drink…

  • Reply
    Friday, October 3, 2014 at 9:52 am

    The Sun Also Rises was also my first Hemmingway book!

  • Reply
    colleen (b.h.c.)
    Thursday, October 2, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    I feel the same way about Willa Cather as you do about Hemmingway, and what a fun step out of your beloved baking. Will you never stop surprising us?

  • Reply
    Arika M.
    Wednesday, October 1, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    How have I not thought of a Mason jar shaker? Genius!

  • Reply
    Wednesday, October 1, 2014 at 5:38 am

    Hemingway is my FAVORITE! I’ve read all his books and am sad there aren’t any new ones to discover :/

    His books have a way of taking you out of your own life and into another world, even after you’ve put one down. “Mildly depressed and needing a drink” – well said.

  • Reply
    Marissa | Pinch and Swirl
    Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    My interest in a Hemingway was just piqued yesterday when I read this description of it on Pen & Palate “It tastes of pre-revolution Cuba, homoeroticism, and six-toed cats.” And then I come across this post today – so I need to try a Hemingway ASAP (obviously). Beautifully written post BTW.

  • Reply
    Allison from Baking: a Love Story
    Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 12:29 pm

    I love the way you write. And, I’m curious about the recipe. Great article. Thanks!

  • Reply
    Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 6:47 am

    The first time I read Hemingway, it was much too heavy-feeling for me (I was really young too). My friend recommended The Paris Wife to me last year, about his first wife and their relationship, and I loved it but it also made me feel really negatively about him which I suppose isn’t actually fair so I think I’ll give him another try. If you haven’t read it, I recommend it (I’m just noticing Francesca’s comment about the book too – it really is a great read). This cocktail is a new one to me but sounds really good!

  • Reply
    Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 5:53 am

    I really love this post! I never studied Hemingway at school and discovered him independently as an adult. I love his books and his depth and am weirdly drawn to his torment. Last year I read The Paris Wife, a ‘factual novel’ (whatever that means) about his life with Hadley Hemingway (his first wife) but from her perspective and it was a great read; quite emotionally dark and perverse at times but I couldn’t put it down – I highly recommend it. Have a good week, looking forward to the next post! Francesca

  • Reply
    Kellie Stupart
    Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 2:46 am

    YES. This is my favourite drink, I order it everywhere that will let me. I am so pleased to see there is no sugar as so many bartenders ruin it by adding it in. I totally agree, the first ever sip is not the best mouthful but they are very moreish, and as soon as you are accustomed to that harsh taste, no drink will compare.

    For the record, I am a massive hemingway fan too! great post.


  • Reply
    Monday, September 29, 2014 at 7:35 pm

    I love these photos and that mason jar! I do not drink, but if I did I think I would be a straight up kind of girl!

  • Reply
    Brian @ A Thought For Food
    Monday, September 29, 2014 at 7:19 pm

    You know how I feel about cocktails. So, this is going on my must-make list. The grapefruit juice is really the thing that I’m drawn to… it’s my favorite ingredient to use in cocktails.

  • Reply
    Monday, September 29, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    Wow, wish I had the skills to prepare great cocktails like this one. What a badass brother-in-law you have! =)


  • Reply
    Monday, September 29, 2014 at 1:43 pm

    So beautifully written – the way your thoughts about drinking and reading Hemingway are interwoven is just amazing. A joy to read your posts.

  • Reply
    Monday, September 29, 2014 at 12:15 pm

    LOVE this mason jar shaker – way cool! And btw- that’s how I like my daquiri – no sweet, no slushy, just straight up.

  • Reply
    Monday, September 29, 2014 at 11:03 am

    That mason jar shaker is rather epic, kind of like your brother-in-law’s beard.

    • Reply
      Monday, September 29, 2014 at 2:16 pm

      I was thinking this the whole time about the beard! Bravo sir.

      Making this cocktail is on my list of things to do, along with reading more books by Hemingway, and less books where he is a character in a historical fiction novel…


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