In the “Gail’s Guide to Cocktails” Series, RŌNIN bartender and certified sommelier, Gail Lanorias, drops some knowledge on your favorite mixed drinks and provides professional tips on how to make them at home.

The name “piña colada” literally means “strained pineapple” and this cocktail was invented in Puerto Rico by Ramón Portas Mingot at the Barrachina Restaurant in 1963. It has been the national drink of Puerto Rico since 1978, but despite originating on this small island in the Caribbean, the piña colada has enjoyed international popularity for decades. It is the ultimate classic cocktail associated with summer, sun, beaches, and vacation. There are many variations of the actual method of making this drink that range from more viscous and chunkier versions to blended, smoother ones. But if it has the three key ingredients of rum, pineapple juice, and coconut cream, it’s a piña colada.


50 ml Rum
50 ml Pineapple Juice
25 ml Coconut Cream
10 ml Lime Juice


  1. Combine all ingredients into a shaker
  2. Shake vigorously with ice for about 10 – 15 seconds
  3. Strain into a tall glass filled with ice


  • You can use coconut cream or milk, but Gail’s preference is coconut cream as it is thicker
  • White rum is often used in piña coladas, but Gail likes using darker rums because they are richer in flavor
  • You can garnish this drink with a pineapple wedge and/or a maraschino cherry

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