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When we moved back to Florida this summer, I had a really difficult time adjusting to our new home. We moved to a tourist town and meeting people was next to impossible. The only saving grace during those first, trying months was the gorgeous, tropical beach. It was like living on vacation, an absolute PARADISE.
As much as the snowbunny misses the mountains, I can’t believe I live here. I really had no idea Florida could be so amazing, especially considering the fact that I’ve lived in other parts of Florida for more of my life than I’ve lived anywhere else. On days like today, where the sun is shining, the ocean is clear and glittering against the sky, and the ocean breeze cools the skin, I can’t imagine we ever lived anywhere else.
Kyle’s job is extremely demanding and we don’t get to see him as much as we would like to. If you’ve followed me for long, you know that I used to refer to him as The Workaholic, which is still so very much the case. It might sound like I’m complaining about it, but the truth is that I’m incredibly proud of him. When we moved to Raleigh for him to take the job as Bar & Lounge Manager at The Umstead Hotel & Spa, he didn’t even drink alcohol and knew very little about wine. During his time there, he proved himself to be an extremely talented mixologist, and he created award-winning alcoholic beverages, has starred in videos with a prominent North Carolina moonshine company, and increased the bar’s local clientele by leaps and bounds.
Having a husband who is talented at mixing drinks means that any time I want a refreshing libation, I need only ask, as long as he’s home that is.
I gave him the task of coming up with a drink for The Dirty Floor Diaries that represented this gorgeous paradise we call home and he most certainly didn’t disappoint. He’s not a big fan of rum, but I have watched him down a few of these drinks since he came up with it, and he’s so excited about it, he’s going to start offering it at his restaurant.
The star of the show here is Canada Dry Blackberry Ginger Ale®. Our version is served in a fresh coconut and utilizes fresh coconut water, but you can always substitute the kind you buy at the store if you don’t want to mess around with hacking a coconut open. The flavor is complex and sweet up front with a lingering coconut breeze on the back end. It absolutely embodies our lives here – sweet and breezy, just like a tropical paradise.
It is a perfect drink for those quick trips to the beach with your friends. During the spring when the weather is perfect for trips to the beach, we often find ourselves going last minute and having only 15 minutes to pack the car for an impromptu beach party. Our beach doesn’t allow glass on the beach (thank goodness), so we keep a gallon jug around that we can mix drinks in to take to the beach. In a pinch, it is easy to mix this drink up, pour it all into the gallon jug, then serve it up in coconut shells at the beach. A quick beach party also requires a large beach blanket tote, chairs, and a shade-providing umbrella or tent. We keep all of those things in our car during the spring and summer so that when we want to have a beach party on the fly, we’re completely ready. You really don’t need much more than the tropical waves rolling onto the sugar white sand and a delicious Blackberry Beach Rum Punch in your hand for the perfect spring-time party.
If you aren’t lucky enough to live near a beach, you can easily set up for a beachy party by laying some towels and a blanket out in your back yard. An umbrella stuck into the ground, some Tiki torches, a few leis, and maybe some tropical music playing in the background will set the scene for a perfect, quick get together among friends.
Don’t want to leave your kids out? Mix up a batch of Rum-free Blackberry Beach and stick little umbrellas in their drinks to mimic what the adults are indulging in.
If rum isn’t your thing, see more great Canada Dry Ginger Ale® recipe ideas on the Canada Dry Ginger Ale® social hub where you can also enter to win a Canada Dry spring party pack and Walmart gift card.
Printable recipe is below, but here are some pretty pictures of the drink being put together.
If using coconut, hack the top off and pour the coconut water out so you can use the coconut as a cup for the drink. If not using fresh coconut, skip to step 2.
Muddle fresh blackberries and lime wedge in the bottom of your cup.
Add ice, then pour the remaining ingredients into your cup and give it a swirl.
Top off with a little umbrella and imagine yourself resting on the beautiful, sugar sand beaches of 30a in Florida’s Panhandle.
Isn’t she lovely? This is rum punch, reimagined.