Hemingway Daiquiri

Hemingway Daiquiri Recipe

The Spruce

  • Total: 3 mins
  • Prep: 3 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Serving: 1 serving
  • Yield: 1 cocktail
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
187 Calories
0g Fat
13g Carbs
3g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 187
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 42mg 2%
Total Carbohydrate 13g 5%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Protein 3g
Calcium 26mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

The Hemingway daiquiri, also known as the Papa Doble or Hemingway special, is a popular classic cocktail. As one may expect, it was named after the writer, Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961), whose novels propelled him to worldwide fame.

It is widely known that Hemingway enjoyed a good drink. Biographical books like Hemingway's own "A Moveable Feast" include countless tales of sharing drinks with literary friends while in Paris, and much of his free time was spent in bars, where he said one could experience the true culture of a place. He was quite selective about what he imbibed and certainly had his preferences.

After spending some time in Cuba, Hemingway quickly became enamored with the daiquiri. In 1921, Constantino Ribailagua of El Floridita in Havana created this variation of the rum sour and named it after Hemingway, his daiquiri-loving regular.

You'll enjoy this amplified daiquiri because it brings the sweetness of maraschino along with tart grapefruit into the classic rum-lime mix. Hemingway himself took this daiquiri without sugar, but most people prefer the added sweetness. Feel free to make a Hemingway with or without the optional simple syrup.


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, pour the rum, maraschino liqueur, and grapefruit and lime juices. Add the simple syrup if desired.

  3. Shake well.

  4. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

  5. Garnish with a lime wheel. Serve and enjoy.


  • To create a better-tasting daiquiri, be sure to choose a top-shelf rum. If you'd like to keep the taste authentic, Cuban rums like Havana Club, Ron Mulata, and Santiago de Cuba are natural choices. Any Caribbean rum would be a good option, though. Keep in mind that in Spanish-speaking countries, white rum is often called blanco, just like tequila.
  • As with any daiquiri, the Hemingway is best with fresh-squeezed lime and grapefruit juices. You can typically expect to get 1/2 to 1 ounce of juice out of the average lime, which is enough for one or two drinks. A grapefruit often yields 5 ounces of juice or more, so a single fruit should be plenty for a few rounds with friends.

Recipe Variation

  • Maraschino is a cherry liqueur with a bitter-dry taste. If you need a substitute, Cherry Heering is your best bet. Stay away from supersweet cherry liqueurs as they will throw off the daiquiri's balance of flavors.
  • If you'd like to serve this cocktail frozen, just add 3/4 to 1 cup of ice to a blender with the other ingredients.

Drink Like Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway's drinking habits are almost as fascinating and famous as his writing. There are many stories about how often he drank and his favorite cocktails—the book "To Have and Have Another: A Hemingway Cocktail Companion" by Philip Greene is dedicated to the subject. He always drank with good taste and often wrote about it, not only in his stories but in journals and letters as well.

Among the many cocktails that Hemingway enjoyed are the daiquiri, whiskey and soda, martini, gin and tonic, and Campari drinks like the Negroni and Americano. The death in the afternoon is a drink Hemingway is credited with inventing—a simple mix of absinthe and Champagne. He preferred all of his drinks ice-cold and not sweet—not just as a matter of taste but apparently also because of inherited diabetes concerns.

Though he never drank while writing (and claimed to recognize when William Faulkner started drinking in that writer's work), his drinks were strong and he often binged. It's said that his own version of the Papa Doble was a double shot of rum, the juice of two limes and one grapefruit, and six drops of maraschino and that he once drank 17 of these in one day. While you might explore the drinks Hemingway preferred, it's not recommended to drink like him in terms of volume.

How Strong Is a Hemingway Daiquiri?

Fresh-made, shaken daiquiris are not light cocktails and the Hemingway is no different. When made with 80-proof rum, it shakes up to an alcohol content around 24 percent ABV (48 proof), or half the rum's strength. To put it into perspective, a rum and Coke is just 12 percent ABV (24 proof).

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