Surprised Cocktail

The Surprised Cocktail
Michael Marquand / Getty Images
  • Total: 33 mins
  • Prep: 33 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 1 cocktail (1 serving)
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
151 Calories
1g Fat
7g Carbs
6g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1 cocktail (1 serving)
Amount per serving
Calories 151
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 1%
Saturated Fat 0g 1%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 8mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 7g 3%
Dietary Fiber 4g 14%
Protein 6g
Calcium 6mg 0%
*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.)

Kummel is a caraway-flavored liqueur that's most popular in northern European countries. It doesn't make an appearance often in cocktails, but when it does, the result is quite interesting. The surprised cocktail is one of those recipes and it's definitely a fascinating drinking experience.

In this recipe, you'll mix kummel with rum and orange juice, adding a hint of pimento dram to ramp of up the flavor. Originally, the cocktail calls for Jamaican rum, which tends to have rich, bold flavors that can stand up to the distinct taste of caraway and other herbs found in kummel. Adding the citrus flavor is a nice contrast and the cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove of pimento dram backs up the kummel. It's a cocktail you simply have to try for yourself and there are a few adaptations you can make as well.


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, pour the rum, kummel, orange juice, and pimento dram.

  3. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.


  • Feel free to pour your favorite rum. Aged or dark rums are going to be best because light rums can get lost within all the drink's complex flavor.
  • Kümmel is focused on caraway seed and typically includes cumin and fennel as well, combining to give it an anise-like flavor. It's not the easiest liqueur to find, but worth hunting down. Look for brands like Combier, Mentzendorff, and Wolfschmidt.
  • Fresh-squeezed orange juice is recommended. You should be able to get 2 to 3 ounces out of the average orange, so you'll have plenty for a few cocktails.
  • Serving this cocktail in a chilled glass will make the entire drinking experience a little more enjoyable. Not only does it stay cold longer, but it also helps marry the flavors.
  • For a quick chill, place a few ice cubes in the glass while you mix up the drink. Discard them before straining.

Recipe Variations

  • One variation of this cocktail uses the same four ingredients, but in a different ratio that focuses less on the rum. To make it, shake 1 ounce light rum with 3/4 ounce each of kummel and orange juice, adding a dash of pimento dram.
  • Aquavit is a good substitute for kummel. It focuses on caraway, though some producers use dill either alone or with caraway, and other herbs may be included.

How Strong Is a Surprised Cocktail?

Most kummel is bottled around 76 proof, making it nearly as strong as the rum you'll pour in the surprised cocktail. With that foundation, this is not a light drink. Its average alcohol content is 26 percent ABV (52 proof), making it a little stronger than the original daiquiri.