• Home
  • Articles
  • How Coconut Water Became A Favoured Cocktail Mixer

How Coconut Water Became A Favoured Cocktail Mixer

How Coconut Water Has Become A Favoured Mixer In Crafting Cocktails

Lounging on a shack on a seashore, sipping cocktails out of a coconut adorned with a colourful straw and a tiki umbrella is an image etched on our minds as the signifier of a relaxed, laidback party enjoyed in the beachy outdoors.

Coconuts have long been part of mixology craft where the fruit is used in several ways to add textural elements to cocktail concoctions. Coconuts also introduce a naturally sweet taste into your drink, eliminating the need to incorporate excess sugar into the recipe.

From coconut shavings to coconut cream, the fruit is quite a prominent ingredient in mixing several tropical drinks. And one of the most interesting elements in the body of the coconut is undoubtedly coconut water which has become a rather favourite among mixologists while crafting delicious cocktails.

Many bartenders are swapping regular water with coconut water while preparing drinks because coconut water has proven to be an excellent ingredient for extracting maximum taste out of aromatics and other spices added to cocktails.

The high fat content in coconut water enables the liquid to extract more flavour from teas and bitters unlike regular water, making it a sought after mixer in cocktail craft.

More recently, it is being incorporated in the making of infused drinks like long island iced tea or certain trendy mixes like espresso martini where coconut stock is used to steep tea, coffee and other infusions.

How Coconut Water Has Become A Favoured Mixer In Crafting Cocktails

Coconut Water: A Lookback

Coconuts and coconut trees make a welcome appearance in many historical and mythological legends across tropical cultures and have been widely used in preparing several culinary delights through centuries. Yet, incorporating coconut water into mixology is a process that began as recently as the 20th and 21st centuries when bartenders began to seek mixer alternatives that were lighter and less synthetic. This was a move to offer drinks to patrons who were seeking cocktails with low sugar content that were still delicious but contained artificial elements and a slight tropical finish.

But one of the earliest uses of coconut water or coconut in boozy mixes can be traced back to the Caribbean where sailors would smuggle alcohol in coconut shells and mix it with lime juice. They would pretend to drink coconut water when in fact this was a blend of coconut flavours inside the fruit with an intense locally produced rum. Here is where one would find the earliest traces of the piña colada too, when a pirate is supposed to have mixed rum, coconut milk and pineapple juice to prepare a drink that would become popular among his fellow sailors.

How Coconut Water Has Become A Favoured Mixer In Crafting Cocktails

Tropical Influences

Despite its use in cocktail making, coconut water became popular only after spirit variations like coconut rum came onto the mixology scene. This led connoisseurs to explore more tropical flavours influenced by Caribbean, southeast Asian and Latin American cultures where coconut water is widely used in drinks as a staple ingredient.

These influences played into the overall trend of incorporating coconut water into cocktails, to prepare boozy mixes that carried a light flavour and taste of the fruit without overpowering the drink with loud coconut notes. Moreover, the rise of the tiki culture and tiki parties inspired by Hawaiian and Polynesian cultures became instrumental in using coconut water in cocktails like mojitos, margaritas and caipirinhas to savour the tropical elements in the drinks.

Incorporating coconut water into cocktails then adds a natural sweetness and subtle flavour into the mix which is greatly useful because these characteristics can also complement different tastes and be paired with different ingredients to craft layered and complex mixes. Evidently, from classical tropical tipples to modern twists, coconut water, with its versatile flavour and growing popularity, is fast becoming a staple ingredient that can add a certain flourish to spirited concoctions.


This content is not available in your location