drinks

Mod Podge Your Way to the Caribbean

DIY Coasters - Drink Recipes - CheapCaribbean.com

It may come as no surprise that we’ve got a long list of Caribbean & Latin food and drink recipes that we love. And of course, we want to make sure you’ve got instant access to our favorites, in case you’re interested in unleashing your inner island local. Check out our guide to Caribbean cuisine if you’re ready to get down on some delicious food and drinks. You’ve got options when it comes to keeping these delish recipes handy. Download it to your phone and use it as an e-recipe book. Or if you’re feeling adventurous, turn these recipes into fabulous DIY coasters!

Here’s what you'll need:

  • Guide to Caribbean cuisine - printed (one-side)
  • White, 4-1/4" square ceramic tiles
  • Mod Podge
  • Foam brush
  • Felt (preferably white)
  • Spray acrylic sealer
  • Scissors or a craft knife
  • Cutting mat or any other clean, flat surface

The guide to Caribbean cuisine is full of great recipes, but to start off you might want to pick a few of your favorites. Once you've chosen, print them but make sure that you DO NOT fit to scale and that you DO NOT print on both sides of the paper. Once the pictures have printed, cut them out so that you end up with 4x4 in. square prints. Tip: the higher the quality of your print, the better the coasters will look.

Once you have your prints ready, you'll need to get the rest of the materials. White 4-1/4 in. ceramic tiles are recommended because the extra 1/4 of an inch provides a clean background for the image. You can get these tiles at any home improvement store (i.e. Home Depot) for about 10 cents each. You can pick up the rest of the materials at any craft store. Make sure that you get the spray acrylic sealer, or else your tiles won't be waterproof.

Now that you have all the necessary materials, follow these steps:

  1. The first thing you need to do is make sure that all your surfaces and tools are clean. You'll want to make sure of this during the entire process to make sure that you don't get anything on the Mod Podge, or else your coasters will be bumpier than a teenaged boy's face.
  2. Once you've made sure that everything is good to go, brush a layer of Mod Podge on top of the finished surface of the tile. You should brush left to right, and have even stokes to ensure the smoothest finish possible. Make sure you get all the way to the edges.
  3. As soon as you're done brushing the Mod Podge on the tile, lay a 4x4 in. square print on top of it so that it sticks to the tile. Make sure it's as centered as possible and smooth it out from the center out with your finger if necessary. You'll want to do all of this quickly, because Mod Podge dries FAST. Tip: after about 10-15 seconds of laying the picture on the Mod Podge, avoid touching it at all or you may ruin the print.
  4. Next, brush another layer of Mod Podge on top of the image, following the same technique as before. Make sure you smooth it out, if necessary.
  5. Let your coasters set for several hours to make sure that the Mod Podge completely dries.
  6. Once the coasters are dry, spray them with the acrylic sealer to ensure that they're waterproof. We recommend you get a sealer with a glossy finish, but satin works just as well.
  7. Finally, you'll need to make sure that your coasters don't scratch up your furniture. You can buy peel-and-stick felt to cover the back of your tile with, or use regular felt and craft glue to complete the task. You'll want to make sure that the felt is slightly smaller than the tile, so cut out 4x4 in. pieces of it so that the front and back of the tiles look uniform.

Voila! Now you can reminisce about your trip to the beach whenever you have a drink, or gift these beauties to somebody so that they can begin to dream of a Caribbean vacation.

Do It Yourself Coasters - Drink Recipes - CheapCaribbean.com

Roberto Jaimes is a Texas A&M graduate and a Web Content Editor at CheapCaribbean.com. Roberto can do a thing or two in Adobe Creative Suite and spends his free time watching/playing soccer and exploring Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. 

Celebrate National Margarita Day with CheapCaribbean.com

We’re two days out from one of our favorite days of the year. National Margarita Day is this Saturday, February 22nd and all of us here at CheapCaribbean.com couldn’t be more excited (and ready) to celebrate. It’s the one day of the year it’s perfectly acceptable to pay tribute to the drink that got it’s start nearly 70 years ago in Acapulco and has become a staple, especially at the beach. This year, we have lots of fun planned so tune in and celebrate with us!

While you’re busy counting down the days, hours, and minutes until party time, it might be helpful to know what margarita flavor is the perfect fit to your personality. That’s why we recommend quizzing yourself with our helpful infographic:

What Kind of Margarita Are You?

CheapCaribbean.com National Margarita Day Infographic | What Kind of Margarita Are You?

On the actual day of this wondrous occasion, you can bet that we’ll be drinks in hand, toes in the sand. We’re hosting a National Margarita Day happy hour and this celebration just wouldn’t be complete without you!

You’re invited & here’s how to join the party:

  • On Saturday, February 22nd, join us for happy hour from 5-6pm CST. Follow along with CheapCaribbean.com on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram as we share fun facts, drink recipes and plenty of other margarita goodness.
  • Use the hashtag #MargaritaParty to share with us how you’re celebrating National Margarita Day. Mention @CheapCaribbean in any of your posts & we just might share your pictures, videos & comments with our fellow beach bums.
  • We’ll be giving away 4 Margaritaville® Key West™ Frozen Concoction Maker® to our favorite #MargaritaParty submissions.
  • Be sure follow our #MargaritaParty partners @SecretsResorts as they help us host the best margarita happy hour around!

So clear your calendars and get ready to hang with CheapCaribbean.com as we sip on some margs and pay tribute to one of our most favorite signature cocktails. It’s no secret we know a thing or two about margaritas and we can’t wait to celebrate with you. See you there!

Curacao’s Famous Liqueur

Curacao Drink Recipes | CheapCaribbean.com

The “Golden Orange of Curacao,” once a forgotten fruit on the island of Curacao, is now the main ingredient for the popular liqueur Curacao. The Spanish Valencia orange was brought over by the Spaniards in the early 1500s, but plans to cultivate it were abandoned after the climate proved incompatible with the sweet fruit. The sweet oranges evolved into a bitter fruit. The plants were left to grow wild, and were so inedible even the goats ignored them.

Over time, the Valencia evolved into the Lahara tree. While the flesh is left uneaten, the peels retained the pleasant fragrance of the Valencia oranges. People discovered that drying the peels brought out the oils, then soaking them with alcohol, water, and spices created the popular liqueur used today. While the orange-flavored liqueur is naturally clear, popular versions are dyed orange, green, and the popular brilliant blue.

Whether you’re on the beautiful beaches of Curacao or at home planning your next Caribbean getaway, be sure to try out some of these tasty Curacao drink recipes for a little extra color in your life!

Curacao Drink Recipes | CheapCaribbean.com

Blue Sky Martini

Ingredients

  • 1 oz vodka
  • 1/4 oz sweet vermouth
  • 1/4 oz blue curacao
  • 3 green olives (stuffed)

Directions: Fill a mixing glass with ice. Pour in vodka and sweet vermouth. Stir (or shake) and strain into a martini glass. Splash with blue curacao. Garnish with 3 green olives.

Diamond Blue

Ingredients

  • 3/4 oz gin
  • 3/4 oz crème de violette
  • 1/4 oz curaçao ( Blue)
  • 1 lemon wedge
  • 3 ozs champagne
  • Garnish: Edible silver powder
  • Glass: Champagne flute

Directions: Add the gin, crème de violette and Curaçao to a mixing glass. Squeeze the lemon wedge into the glass and discard. Fill with ice. Stir, and strain into a Champagne flute. Top with the Champagne and garnish with a light dusting of edible silver powder.

Electric Lemonade

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 ozs vodka (citron)
  • 1/2 oz blue curacao
  • 2 ozs sour mix
  • 12 ozs carbonated beverages (flavored)
  • 1 lemon (- cut into wedges for garnish)

Directions: Fill a Collins glass with ice. Pour in vodka, blue curacao and sour mix. Fill to the top with lemon-lime soda. Garnish with lemon wedge, and serve with straw.

Article by: Jeff Mapua

Drink Recipes Fit for a Red Carpet

When it comes to red carpet events, we like to think the best accessory is often your drink. Below are some our favorite drink recipes to help you make any event a success!

Drink Recipes - Secrets Resorts - CheapCaribbean.com

Havana Lights Cocktail, as featured at Secrets Capri Riviera Cancun

What you need:
• 3/4 ounce light rum
• 3/4 ounce coconut rum
• 3/4 cup pineapple juice
• 1/2 ounce. melon liquor
• A few drops of grenadine syrup

How to make it: Mix and shake the first three ingredients, then pour into a cocktail glass. Add a few drops of grenadine and then finish the drink off with a splash of melon liquor. Garnish with your favorite fruit and enjoy!

Tropical Rum Punch Drink Recipes from Dreams Resorts & CheapCaribbean.com

Tropical Rum Punch, as featured at Dreams Resorts & Spas

What you need:
• 3/4 cup white rum
• 1/2 cup coconut rum
• 1/4 cup banana liqueur
• 1 cup pineapple juice
• 1/4 cup orange juice
• 1/4 cup pink grapefruit juice
• Garnish: Limes, sliced

How to make it: Fill a pitcher halfway with ice. Add all the rum, liqueur and juices, mix well with large spoon and garnish with lime slices. Serves 6-8. Pour and enjoy.

Fresh Mint Mojito Drink Recipe from CheapCaribbean.com

Fresh Mint Mojito

What you need:
• 4-5 fresh mint leaves
• 1 ½ ounces white rum
• 1/2 ounce agave nectar or simple sugar
• 2 ounces fresh squeezed lime juice
• splash of club soda
• Lime wedge

How to make it: Use mixing tin to muddle 4-5 mint leaves. Add rum, agave nectar & lime juice and shake in mixing tin over ice. Pour into glass. Top off with a splash of club soda and a squeeze of lime. Enjoy!

Drink Recipe from Grace Bay Club, Turks & Caicos - CheapCaribbean.com

Infinity Martini, as featured at Grace Bay Club, Turks & Caicos

What you need:
• 4 ounces Pineapple juice
• 1 ounce Malibu rum
• 1 ounce Hypnotiq liqueur

How to make it: Combine all ingredients with one cup of ice in a martini shaker, Shake to blend and pour into chilled martini glass. Garnish with pineapple wedge and a maraschino cherry. Cheers!

Drink Recipes - Jamaica - CheapCaribbean.com

Blue Jamaica

What you need: 
• 1 ounce Blue Curacao
• 2 ounces pineapple juice
• 3 ounces champagne
• 1 pineapple slice

How to make it: Pour champagne in preferred glass, add pineapple juice and blue curacao. Garnish with pineapple slice. Cheers!

ultimate-agave

Ultimate Agave Margarita

What you need:
• 1 ounce Don Julio® Reposado Tequila
• ½ ounce Grand Marnier®
• 1 ½ ounce fresh squeezed lime juice
• 1 teaspoon of agave nectar
• 1 lime wheel

How to make it: Add agave nectar, lime juice, Grand Marnier & Don Julio tequila together in a shaker. Shake with ice and strain into an ice filled margarita glass. Garnish with salt and a lime wheel. Sit back and sip!

And if you can't wait to mix up all of these concoctions and give them a try, be sure to tune into the Grammy's with CheapCaribbean.com as we live tweet the whole event and share more of our favorite cocktails. See all the drinks here. Cheers! 

Relax with Rum for National Rum & Relaxation Day

National Relaxation Day is August 15th & National Rum Day is August 16th. Could it be more perfect that National Relaxation Day and National Rum Day both fall in the same week? We’d go as far to say its fate that you celebrate these two important holidays this week. Here are a few suggestions as to the best ways to relax with rum this week.

Sip on a Mount Gay Mojito & Relax

One of our top choices for Caribbean rum and absolute must for this week’s celebration, comes from the island of Barbados. Established in 1703, Mount Gay Rum is made up of the finest Barbadian molasses, which comes from the exceptional sugar grown on the island. After a specific process of fermentation, distillation, maturation and blending, the end result is the smoothest of the smooth spirits – Mount Gay Rum.

National Rum Day - Mojito - CheapCaribbean.com

And how should you drink the infamous Mount Gay Rum? Let us suggest a perfectly sweetened, fresh & smooth classic mojito. Straight from the Mount Gay’s vault, follow this recipe for the ultimate mojito drink.

Ingredients:

  • 4 -6 mint leaves
  • 2 oz. Mount Gay Silver
  • ¾ oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 2 oz. of soda water
  • 3 springs of fresh mint

Muddle mint in a mixing tin. Add ice, rum, lime juice, sugar & shake. Pour into a tall glass and top off with soda water. Garnish with mint sprig.

So we'd obviously recommend a pretty white beach for you to enjoy while sipping on this cocktail, even if you aren’t beach side, take in a piece of this island and enjoy National Rum Day the right way.

Live Like the Locals Do at Rum Point Beach

If you consider yourself a beach aficionado like some of us do, then you’ll want to venture out to Rum Point on Grand Cayman Island. And while we are BIG fans of Seven Mile Beach in the Cayman Islands, Rum Point is a great beach for those who are looking to explore something off the beaten path, as well as give you the feeling you’ve been transported to a completely different island.

Rum Point, Grand Cayman Island - Photo Credit: kkimphotography

On your day trip out to Rum Point, you’ll want to stop into Wreck Bar & Grill for some delicious grub, and of course – rum! To satisfy your hunger, we recommend the fried grouper BLT or jerk burger. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can take on the Rum Point Challenge, which includes 16 oz. of ground beef stuffed with jalapenos, topped with bacon, cheddar, Swiss, mayo, lettuce, tomato, onion, fries & coleslaw.

And when it’s time to unwind with a few, we’ll be drinking a rum runner or blue iguana. You can make your own rum runner by combining Appleton rum (an island favorite), blackberry brandy, banana rum, orange juice & pineapple juice. So grab the bottle of rum and bottoms up!

Take on the VooDoo Juice, If You Dare

This rum recommendation comes straight from our favorite Caribbean castaway, Rum Shop Ryan. One of his favorite beach bars and ours as well, Iggies Beach Bar at the Bolongo Bay Resort in St. Thomas is known for it’s fun and party-like atmosphere – making it the perfect place to celebrate these fabulous holidays. Named “Best Beach Bar 2012” by Caribbean Travel & Life, Iggies offers live music 365 days a year, amongst numerous holiday and special event parties.

Iggies Beach Bar, Grand Cayman Island - National Rum Day - CheapCaribbean.com

It’s also known for it’s magical concoction called VooDoo Juice. Served up in a big bucket perfect for those who are extra thirsty, this Cruzan rum recipe is more likely to make you get up and dance rather than relax the day away. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can this recipe on for yourself:

Ingredients:

  • 1 oz. Cruzan Pineapple Rum
  • 1 oz. Cruzan Banana Rum
  • 1 oz. Cruzan Coconut Rum
  • 1 oz. Cruzan Citrus Rum
  • 0.5 oz. Cruzan Dark Rum
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 3 oz. pineapple juice 

Fill bucket (or really large glass) with ice and pour in the Pineapple, Banana, Coconut and Citrus Cruzan rums. Then add the cranberry and pineapple juice and top with Cruzan Dark Rum. Raise your glass and cheers!

So there you have it. You know how the CheapCaribbean.com team would celebrate these two fabulous holidays. But the question is…how will you be celebrating? Share your plans in the comment section below.