In celebration of Mardi Gras, lush legions of partygoers will throw back their share of Hurricanes, those syrupy-sweet rum cocktails whose invention is credited to the French Quarter bartenders at New Orleans’s Pat O’Brien’s back in the forties. Unfortunately, the majority of these cocktails will come drowned in artificial sweeteners and well-level hooch. Seeking an upgrade to this classic Cajun cocktail, we reached out to Nikki Sunseri, director of the cocktail program at Little Dom’s in Los Feliz, where Cajun and Italian cooking mingle under New Orleans chef Brandon Boudet. Sunseri created the following “perfect” Hurricane recipe for us and leaves a few helpful hints for making them at home.
“I wanted this to be delicious and still kick you in the teeth as a good party cocktail should,” Sunseri says. “Hurricanes tend to be on the sickly sweet side, so I aimed to make mine more on the tart side. I reproduced that red color with strawberry puree as opposed to grenadine. I also used rum that was a bit more complex than, say, Bacardi 151. Using Pussers Navy rum, which tends to be on the vanilla side, and Flor de Caña, which tends to be on the honey side, adds a little more depth and kick to this over-the-top tropical-tasting cocktail.” Check out Sunseri’s Hurricane recipe below and have yourself a good kick in the teeth tonight.
Perfect Hurricane Cocktail Recipe
1/2 oz Passion Fruit Puree (I like using Perfect Puree)
3/4 oz Fresh Orange Juice
3/4 oz Pineapple Juice
1/2 oz Lime Juice (take out the pulp)
1/4 oz Simple Syrup
1 oz Strawberry Puree (Perfect Puree)
1/2 oz Luxardo Amaretto
1 oz Pussers Navy Rum
1 oz Flor de Caña Extra Dry White Rum
Shake all with ice. Serve over crushed ice in a Hurricane glass. Garnish with half an orange wheel.