There’s something very special about the West Indies island of Nevis that not nearly enough people are talking about it: it’s home to the oldest rum punch recipe in the Caribbean. Hermitage Nevis claims that its 300 year-old recipe for rum punch is in fact the first of its kind. The plantation resort dates back to the 1600s and also happens to be the oldest surviving wooden house in the Caribbean. It’s in this dining room that I got to enjoy the Hermitage Rum Punch, listening to soft piano music, sitting on antique furniture, thinking how Hermitage Nevis represents the real Caribbean.
The dining room is jaw-dropping. We should all be so lucky to have our outdoor dining space look so old-world elegant. I said it before and I’ll say it again: I felt like Elizabeth Swann eating dinner at The Hermitage.
Dinner is a different menu every evening. Be sure to get there early so you can enjoy a rum punch in the 300 year-old lounge!
The most exciting part? The Hermitage graciously taught me how to make the oldest rum punch recipe in the Caribbean! It’s actually quite simple: 1 part sour, 2 parts sweet, 3 parts rum. For the sour portion, The Hermitage uses sour oranges that are grown locally on the island. Don’t panic! They told me that you can sub out lemons at home. For the sweet portion, boil together equal parts brown sugar and water until the sugar is completely dissolved. You can do this in the amount of time it takes your morning coffee to brew. Let it cool; that’s your brown simple syrup. For the rum portion, use a golden rum. Garnish with 3 dashes angostura bitters and freshly grated nutmeg. Voila!
The Oldest Rum Punch in the Caribbean, courtesy of Hermitage Nevis
1 part freshly squeezed sour orange juice or lemon juice
2 parts brown simple syrup
3 parts rum
Freshly grated nutmeg
For two cocktails, that means:
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup brown simple syrup
1 1/2 cups golden rum
3 dashes Angostura bitters
Freshly grated nutmeg
- Combine lemon juice, brown simple syrup, and golden rum in a pitcher.
- Pour in two glasses over ice.
- Top with three dashes Angostura bitters and freshly grated nutmeg. Enjoy!
To make brown simple syrup:
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup water
- Boil brown sugar and water until sugar is completely dissolved. Let cool and store in the fridge. Makes 2 cups.
Learn more about Nevis and watch me make the oldest rum punch in the Caribbean:
Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s lie for