The Cuba Libre Cocktail
Created in 1900 with Bacardirum, more than six million Cuba Libre cocktails are enjoyed every day. The legendary Cuba Libre turned 113 years old in August. Since its creation in Havana, Cuba, in 1900, it has become one of the most ordered cocktails in the world.
The drink that created a cocktail revolution was borne of revolution itself. 1898 marked the end of Cuba’s War for Independence. It was this war, known as the Spanish-American War, which brought many Americans to Cuba, including future United States President Theodore Roosevelt, then a Colonel in his regiment popularly known as the Rough Riders.
These Americans brought Coca-Cola with them to Cuba, and it soon became a popular beverage among Cubans and Americans alike. While celebrating Cuba’s victory at The American Bar in Havana, a U.S. Army Signal Corps decided to combine his Cuban Bacardi Rum with Coca-Cola and a squeeze of a fresh lime, sparking interest among others in the bar.
Soon the entire bar was drinking this enticing new combination and the captain proposed a toast of “Por Cuba libre!” (For a Free Cuba) – a phrase used frequently as the battle cry of both Cuban revolutionaries and Americans soldiers. The name caught on, and stuck. “We are hugely proud that even after 113 years the Cuba Libre, a simple but distinctive mix of rum, cola and fresh lime juice, is the world’s favorite cocktail,” said Dmitry Ivanov, Senior Global Category Director of Rums. “The history of the Cuba Libre makes it more than just a cocktail. Anyone ordering a “rum and Coke,” should be aware of its rich heritage as a toast to freedom.”
“The Cuba Libre is not only deliciously refreshing, it is also simple to make, which explains its huge popularity around the world,” said David Cordoba, Bacardi Global Brand Ambassador. “To be a true Cuba Libre however it simply has to be Bacardi – the quality of the rum is undeniable, and the historical origins of the drink give it a story that few cocktails can compete with.”