Dark and Stormy Cocktail

The dark and stormy cocktail is a simple concoction of smooth rum, spicy ginger beer, and a wedge of lime. Sorta like a grown up soda.

A tall glass filled with dark and stormy cocktail with ginger beer being poured in.

This simple Dark and Stormy cocktail combines the sweetness and spice of ginger, the tropical coconuttiness of rum, and the tang of lime in a sweetly, stiffly satisfying cocktail suitable for dark and stormy weather as well as moods.–Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan

Dark and Stormy Cocktail

A tall glass filled with dark and stormy cocktail with ginger beer being poured in.
The dark and stormy cocktail is a simple concoction of smooth rum, spicy ginger beer, and a wedge of lime. Sorta like a grown up soda.

Prep 5 minutes
Total 5 minutes
1 servings
208 kcal
5 / 4 votes
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  • Crushed ice or ice cubes
  • 2 ounces dark rum
  • 6 ounces ginger beer (NOT ginger ale)
  • 1 lime wedge or, if you want to be trendy, chunk of candied ginger


  • Fill a highball glass–or, let’s just be realistic, whatever glass you happen to have handy–with ice.
  • Pour in first the rum and then the ginger beer. Stir gently. Garnish with the lime or candied ginger. We think you can handle things from here.
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*A Boozier Dark and Stormy Cocktail

When you crave a relatively tame nip, rely on the genteel proportions of rum to ginger beer in the above recipe. But when you’re partial to something tipsier, turn to the proportions proposed by entertaining designer Lulu Powers in Lulu Powers Food to Flowers: Simple, Stylish Food for Easy Entertaining. Her tactic is to pour 1 1/2 ounces of dark rum over ice, top it with about 1/2 cup ginger beer, and then finish it with the juice of 1/2 lime. (You may as well toss that spent lime into the glass for good measure.) One version isn’t better than the other. Just different.

Show Nutrition

Serving: 1cocktailCalories: 208kcal (10%)Carbohydrates: 20g (7%)Sodium: 13mg (1%)Potassium: 3mgSugar: 19g (21%)Calcium: 5mg (1%)Iron: 1mg (6%)

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Recipe Testers’ Reviews

With all apologies to Oprah, I’ll take a Dark & Stormy over a Moscow mule any day. Not only do you not need a special mug, but I think dark rum cuts the ginger beer’s sharpness better than vodka does. Just a warning though. These highballs are strong, so if you’re thinking you might make another to finish off the bottle of ginger beer, stand up first.

I had these in Australia many years ago. This is a refreshing and delightful cocktail. My mother agreed to taste-test the drink, even though she didn’t think she’d enjoy it since she is not fond of ginger beer, but she loved it. It was wonderful the way it was not too gingery or rummy, but it all blended smoothly. This would be great on a hot summer afternoon while the shrimps are on the barbie

Very refreshing drink with the rum and ginger beer. I did like some of the lime juice squeezed in mine. Perfect drink when you want a little something special.

This Dark and Stormy Cocktail is refreshing, simple and delicious! A great cocktail that is not too sweet and is even better with a squeeze of lime. I’m a sucker for anything with ginger.

Simple to make and easy to drink. The spiciness of the ginger beer comes through in this refreshing cocktail, but doesn’t overwhelm. It would be interesting to try this with different brands of ginger beer (or even homemade, but then it stops being so simple).

Such a simple drink, yet refreshing and delicious. For this Dark and Stormy Cocktail use good-quality rum (the official, trademarked version specified Goslings) and a great ginger beer (I used Bundaberg).

Not wintry enough for a heavy cocktail? Too early for a margarita? Try a Dark & Stormy. This easy-to-follow recipe makes this cocktail even more fun to drink. I’ve had luck with Gosling’s brand ginger beer, as well as with Regatta.

This is a very tasty beverage indeed. The spiciness of the ginger beer goes together very well with the dark rum. Make sure you use the best of both–rum from Trinidad and ginger beer from Jamaica. And fresh lime! I prefer crushed ice over ice cubes, as it makes more of a slushy-type drink. Would be perfect on a hot sunny afternoon in the sun. Excellent!

The weather forecast for this week is gloomy, so this seemed like an appropriate drink to try. I didn’t know if the drink was to reflect our overcast, rainy day or transport me to a sunny beach. Because the drink comes together quickly, I didn’t have to wait long to find out. My first sip definitely said sunny beach. The ginger beer lightens the flavor of the rum, and the hint of bubbles is pretty cool. It’s refreshing, bright, and smooth, with a bit of spice on the finish. It has a tropical feel to it and gave me something other than clouds and rain to think about.

A Dark & Stormy is a light, deceptively mild-flavored drink. Ginger beer definitely works better than ginger ale in this mix (I tried, just to taste the difference). The rum is in there, but not overly assertive. The drink itself is quite refreshing, with or without the lime, belying the dark and stormy moniker. At two ounces of rum per glass, though, things may get rather dark if you underestimate it!

I loved this simple cocktail. It’s a little sweet, a little spicy, and the lime adds a delicate citrus taste. A friend had given me a bottle of Gosling’s Black Seal black rum several years back, and I just opened it for this drink. The ginger beer was Reed’s Extra Ginger Brew. I wouldn’t change anything about the recipe

Originally published October 31, 2019


#leitesculinaria on Instagram If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We'd love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.


  1. A Dark and Stormy is one of my favorite cocktails, but only when a premium lower sugar ginger beer is available. Thanks to Google and Real Simple magazine, I am enjoying a great Fall twist on a Dark and Stormy, substitute 2 ounces of apple cider for 2 ounces of the (Fever Tree or Q) ginger beer.

  2. 5 stars
    I agree — they are strong! We found the Gosling’s ginger beer too sweet (48 sugars/can!) but we liked their Black Seal rum. Fever Tree ginger beer is nice & spicy; loved it.

    1. Hi Kady, so glad that you found my favorite drink! We also use a ginger beer called Blenheims- real spicy!

  3. 5 stars
    Just came across this. This was my Nana’s favorite cocktail. In fact, I drank my fair share at her wake in honor of her. Being Bermudian (Beth, your husband will agree) Barritt’s Ginger Beer is the best and the way to go. Gosling’s Ginger Beer isn’t bad, but Barritt’s is the best. If you are ever in Bermuda you should stop by Swizzle Inn and get the frozen Dark n Stormy. She’s tasty.

    1. Couldn’t agree more Claire. Except I tend to head for the swizzles at the Swizzle Inn in Baileys Bay. I’ve spent many an afternoon indulging in those frosty little pitchers of fruity libations (and paying the price the next day).

      1. Yes, well a trip to Bermuda would not be complete without a trip to the Swizzle. (Anyone else reading this post should head on down.) I think we are there 2-3 times per month. In fact we were there last night and asked them how many times a day they need to make Swizzle and I think they said up to 8 depending on how busy they are which if you see where they store it, that is a lot! You should post the recipe on here. I am sure a lot of people will enjoy. It is like a little glass of heaven. But be careful, she has a bite that will sneak up on you!

        1. And I’ve been bitten many times, Claire. I have the recipe stashed away somewhere. It might be time for a little tasting, um, testing.

  4. 5 stars
    I just had my first Dark and Stormy on Nantucket last week – it was the highlight of the trip! Cisco Brewery makes a super-gingery version with house-made ginger syrup that they call “d’ack and stormy” (ACK being Nantucket’s airport). Now I’m off to the store to get some ginger beer and limes to go with the rum in my cupboard. Greatly appreciate this post, and the recommendations for brands of rum and ginger beer. Thanks!

  5. David,

    The very best dark and stormy is made with Fever Tree Ginger Beer. There is no other ginger beer quite like it. The ginger is incredibly potent, over the top in gingerland and any other brand is just limp and wimpy in comparison. I have to order it through Amazon, no one carries it around here. Brands of Britain imports it from England (of course). Their tonic, while on the subject of summer drinks, is also superior. I had it first in London and was smitten. The only product that they produce that I have been disappointed in is their diet tonic. It is just plain nasty.


    1. Hi Candy,

      Thanks so much for the tip. I’m always searching for alternatives to my beloved Baritt’s ginger beer. I’ll be sure and check it out.

    2. Every time I see that you left a message, I hear the song “Candy” in my head. I guess it’s another melody to add to the dinnertime playlist.

      All of us agree heartily about Fever Tree ginger beer–especially Renee, our resident, um, beer expert. Thanks for the confirmation.

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