HOME > Chowhound > Spirits >


Best Ginger Beer for a Dark and Stormy?

We are planning on using Myer's dark rum...any suggestions on the best brand of ginger beer and where to buy it in manhattan?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I made my very first dark & stormy Saturday (and my 2nd, 3rd, 4th & 5th). I used Sprecher's made in Milwaukee. Good, but not as good as The Ginger People Ginger Beer. I've got a Cock & Bull on deck.

    1. I vote for Buffalo Rock. But it's a Bama product that you'd have to mail order. Still need to try Blenheims sometime.


      1. I like Reed's Extra Ginger. It's available a lot of places and not too expensive, a lot of ginger bite and makes a good D&S. Cheers!

        1. I tried a Fentiman's today. Nice and bitey.

          1 Reply
          1. re: JohnE O

            i love fentimans products... also try the maine root ginger brew for a really fresh ginger flavor and none of the high fructose junk


          2. make your own -- This is the recipe from pegu club's. It isn't carbonated, but it is still delicious.

            * 10 cups water
            * 12 ounces fresh ginger, finely chopped (for a lighter colored ginger beer, peel the ginger before weighing it)
            * 1/4 cup light brown sugar
            * juice of 1 lime
            * one bay leaf

            Bring the water to a boil; turn off heat and add the ginger and the bay leaf. Cover the pot and let steep for no less than four hours, or overnight. Strain the mixture through cheesecloth, squeezing and pressing to express the last, very flavorful drops of liquid from the ginger. Add the sugar and the lime juice, stir, bottle and refrigerate.

            1. The classic combination is Gosling's Black Seal and Barritt's Ginger Beer, which are imported by the same company. At least here in Boston, Barritt's is available pretty much exclusively at liquor stores: it's usually with the mixers, but recently, some stores have had end cap displays that have both the Gosling's and the Barritt's together.

              Barritt's does in fact make a fine drink, but really, any decently bitey ginger beer will do. If you can lay hands on anything marked "Jamaican style," those work really well.

              1. If you have a Super Target somewhere close (regular Target might carry it too but I know for fact that ST has it), pick up the house label Archer Farms ginger beer. It's great. Lots of bite, no HFCS.

                1. The Goya's was really bitey, like a punch to the back of your throat, but still very tasty. The thing about Dark & Stormy's is that, after 6 or 7, the effects can really creep up on you.

                  1. Tried Regatta ginger beer from Bermuda. I'd compare it with the Ginger People--very tasty but without the overpowering bite. I think I prefer the smoother ginger beers over hte agressively bitey ones.

                    1. I vote for Reed's extra ginger. It has the punch to stand up to the rum. I like Gosling's Black Navy for the rum. but will sub some Appleton X/V if I want something a little lighter

                      1. I like Fentimens and Regatta, the Fentimens has a bit more bite and is a bit pricey. Fentimens can be found at Dean & Deluca.

                        1. I know this links over a year old but as a D&S connoisseur I had to throw in my 2 cents. I drink on average just over a dozen Stormys a week so over the years I've progressed from preferring a Ginger Beer with lots of spicy bite to one that's a tad on the creamy side. Saranac makes a nice one which I buy by the case at Total Wine for a 10% discount. I use 4 ozs of rum to 6 ozs ginger beer. Goslings Black Seal is the only rum I use. In a pinch I've had to mix equal portions of Cruzans Black Strap and regular dark rum, but it's just not a true D&S.
                          Key limes are my favorites and I use about a third of a lime per drink. Lastly, for a nice twist try adding a few slices of sushi ginger. It can usually be found in Asian or International markets or just request extra next time you visit a sushi restaurant. Enjoy!

                          1. Gosling's Black Seal Rum is the correct rum for this drink. i don't think Meyer's Dark has the body to be a proper D&S.

                            12 Replies
                            1. re: ScubaSteve

                              Goslings, by trademark, is the only rum that can legally be used in a Dark 'n Stormy


                              1. re: KTinNYC

                                Here in Boston, Polar has started brewing a Gosling's-branded ginger beer. I've done a side-by-side taste test and it's definitely NOT just Barritt's ginger beer (imported by the same company that imports Gosling's) in a different can: completely different flavor profile, and to my tastebuds, a better one. This is actually my ginger beer of choice even when there's no rum involved!

                                1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps

                                  How does it compare to Maine Root Ginger Brew (my personal favorite--partially because it's at least somewhat local)?

                                  1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                    Dunno, never had it. Where can I lay hands on some?

                                    1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps

                                      Whole Foods carries it, as do a few other stores with similar focus. It's a very small company so their distribution isn't great, but they have a very good product in my opinion. Good root beer, too, but I have no cocktail applications for that at the moment.

                                      1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                        the Caribbean Punch they make at Drink uses root beer. i don't know the recipe but you could always ask when/if you go.

                                        1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                          Now that you mention it, I suspect rye and bitters would go very well with a good root beer.

                                  2. re: KTinNYC

                                    That is enough to get me to pick a different dark rum.

                                    Dark 'n Orangy
                                    2 oz Dark Rum (any brand but Goslings)
                                    1 oz Cointreau
                                    1/2 oz Creme de Gingembre
                                    1/2 oz Lemon
                                    3 dash Angostura Orange
                                    Lemon peel
                                    Shake, rocks.

                                    Would be excellent with grated or muddled fresh ginger, I bet.

                                    1. re: EvergreenDan

                                      Creme de Gingembrewhat?
                                      I had to Google that, and there is very little information available about it.

                                      Seriously, dude, you might be the only person on chowhound with a bottle of that.
                                      Did you get it from Beltramo's.com?
                                      You should do a taste test of Creme de Gingeembre against Canton Ginger Liqueur, the more widely available product, and write a post about it.

                                      1. re: jerryc123

                                        Actually, I was asking someone else to do that. :)
                                        The Creme de Gingembre is fairly sweet, with a concentrated "ginger ale" flavor, rather than a sharp ginger beer flavor. My bottle is just about empty, so I have a choice of what to buy next. I'm inferring that Canton is the leading contender. If I had my druthers, I'd like a sharper (spicier), drier, more complex flavor. As an ingredient, it's very one-note, so must be used carefully.

                                        I got it at Cambridge Wine and Spirits, in Fresh Pond, Cambridge, MA. I didn't know it was hard to come by as I see lots of other Massenez sweet/fruity/gooey stuff on the shelves.

                                        1. re: jerryc123

                                          Jerry123- Reviving an old off-topic subthread. I was almost out of Creme de Gingembre and decided to try Canton next, since no one had compared them. I did a quickie taste between the two.

                                          Creme de Gingembre is very straightforward "ginger ale" taste, without much ginger spice burn either initially or later. The flavor doesn't change much. Canton is more complex. Initially it doesn't have a strong ginger taste -- more complex, then ginger flavors come and a small amount of "ginger beer" burn at the end. Both are quite sweet.

                                          Overall, I'd say Canton is a better and more interesting product, although it is a more expensive. I'm not sure that in a cocktail there would be a large difference.

                                          I made a Gin-Gin Mule, substituting Creme de Gingembre + seltzer for ginger ale. Good summer drink, but it got a little boring. I added some Campari halfway though, which made it more interesting.

                                          The most interesting ginger drink I've had so far is the Sloppy Possum from Lord Hobo -- Fernet Branca, Canton, Lemon. Surprisingly good. I think it takes something like Fernet to stand up to anything more than a touch of Canton. Too much ginger can dominate a drink and make them all taste the same.

                                          1. re: EvergreenDan

                                            To re-revive- I just noticed a Stirrings ginger liqueur on the shelf here in ATL. Hadn't seen it before and it was relatively inexpensive. No idea whether it's any good.

                                  3. I agree with making your own. Buy an ISI soda siphon and you can have great ginger beer for weeks (or until you use it up). I actually wrote a post about it on my crappy blog (only crappy because I haven't updated it since I went back to teaching in the fall):


                                    1. unfiltered fresh ginger is the way to go! I just tasted this at my local grocer in Fort Greene and it's hands down the spiciest, snappiest ginger ale out there. You see the actual ginger pieces in the bottle! and apparently its brewed right here in brooklyn too. did a side by side test dark & stormy with Regatta's and it was night and day. http://www.freshgingerale.com

                                      1. D&S's are just about my favorite cocktail right now. I've only tried two ginger beers. The first was Reed's Extra Ginger. I found it way too strong, and totally undrinkable. So did my wife. Then I hunted down some Barritt's and loved it. No need to try anything else, the Barritt's is awesome. Of course, I used Gosling's Black Seal (80 proof) rum. I tried the overproof 151 and it is just not the same at all.

                                        1. At home I've tried Reeds, Reeds Extra, Saranac and Stewarts. The latter two are the best. Maine Root, which I've had in a restaurant, is also quite good. I would love to brew my own ginger beer from galangal and see what kind of a flavor profile I would get.

                                          1. I'm just going to dig this up to throw out a recommendation for D&G Ginger Beer.

                                            I've tried a bunch of the ginger beers out there, and I find that most of the time they tend to either have too much heat without enough spice, or they lean too much towards citrus or fruit flavors, without enough ginger.

                                            In Jamaica, Queens, NY where I live you can get D&G at pretty much any bodega, so I started using it just because it was readily available. I know that with its high fructose corn syrup and all that it's never going to be as fashionable as whatever boutique blends are out there, but I think its blend of ginger flavor, sweetness, and spice make it the optimal ginger flavored soda. Tough I'm not sure it's too popular with the cocktail crowd, I think it's excellent in a Dark and Stormy, Rum Buck, Gin Mule, or other ginger beer cocktails.

                                            4 Replies
                                            1. re: A_Gonzalez

                                              My regular drink is a gin buck and my favorite ginger beers to date are as follows: (1) Fever Tree; (2) Barritt's; (3) Cock 'n Bull; (4) Gosling's; and (5) Saranac.

                                              I have yet tried D&G, so thanks for the recommendation.

                                                1. re: davis_sq_pro

                                                  Not yet, but hope to get some in short order.

                                                  1. re: hawkeyeui93

                                                    I would recommend AJ Stephans and Maine Root, in that order.