All Hands On Deck with Shellback Rum

All hands were on deck when The Modern Mixologist, Tony Abou-Ganim, took to the helm to help celebrate National Rum Day (August 16th) by teaching us how to make simple, tasty cocktails with Shellback Rum from Barbados.

Upon arriving at the event, we enjoyed a glass (or two) of Tony’s Rum Punch to get in the mood. Made with Shellback Silver Rum, lemon juice, simple syrup, bitters and grated nutmeg, this was a tasty punch that gave a punch. So, it was a good thing we filled up on small bites as well.

Once we were well primed, we took our seats, each complete with bar tools, fresh fruit, fresh-made syrups and, of course, Shellback Rums (Silver and Spiced).

As Tony Abou Ganim, who grew up in the bar business, is one of the pioneering and leading bar professionals in the world, we were in the best of hands when it comes to learning techniques for muddling, shaking and serving, while crafting sophisticated modern updates to classic rum cocktails.

Here is what we made:

Milestone Mojito

  • 1.5 oz Shellback Spiced Rum
  • 1 oz housemade ginger syrup
  • 1 oz freshly sqeezed lime juice
  • 12-14 fresh mint leaves (remove all stems)
  • 10-12 slices of kumquats or 4 slices of mandarin, clementine or nectarine
  • soda water


In a highball glass, lightly muddle lime juice, ginger syrup, kumquats/oranges and mint leaves. Add crushed ice and Shellback Spiced Rum. Stir with bar spoon until glass begins to frost. Top with chilled soda water. Garnish with a mint sprig.

First Mate
  • 1.5 oz Shellback Spiced Rum
  • 1 oz cinnamon simple syrup
  • 2 oz unfiltered apple juice
  • 1 oz lemon juice
  • chilled Fever Tree ginger beer
  • Lemon spirals and apple slices for garnish

In a shaker, add Shellback Spiced Rum, cinnamon syrup, unfiltered apple juice and fresh lemon juice; Shake with ice until well-blended. Strain into an ice filled Collins glass. Top with chilled ginger beer. Stir to mix and garnish with lemon spirals and apple slices.

Deck Hand Daiquiri
  • 2 oz Shellback Silver Rum
  • 1 oz hand extracted lime juice
  • 1 oz simple syrup
  • fresh seasonal fruits and berries
In a shaker, muddle fresh fruits with simple syrup.  Add fresh lime juice and Shellback Silver Rum. Shake with ice until well-blended and double strain into a chilled cocktail coup. Garnish with a thin slice of lime and fruit of your choice.

All three of these cocktails were refreshing, flavorful and “yummy” and most importantly, very easy and fun, to make.

What is a Shellback? Historically, a Shellback was a sailor who had crossed the equator. Have you crossed the equator? I have! If so, call yourself a Shellback. I do! If not, perhaps a bottle of Shellback Rum will made you feel like you have crossed the equator.