Flavorful Pina Colada twists that elevate the iconic Puerto Rican cocktail

Original Pina Colada with a Pineapple Cup at Caribe Hilton
Original Pina Colada with a Pineapple Cup at Caribe Hilton / Hilton

Whether shaken or blended, served with a little umbrella or a simple cherry garnish, a pina colada, the iconic Puerto Rican cocktail, is ready for a flavorful upgrade. Without overshadowing its classic flavor, these simple twists can make the tropical refreshment even more satisfying.

70 years ago, Caribe Hilton, in San Juan, Puerto Rico, debuted a tropical libation that quickly became its signature cocktail. Bartender Ramón “Monchito” Marrero may have never imagined that his pineapple, coconut, and rum cocktail would make him a mixologist legend. Today, the Hilton resort sells more than 53,000 pina coladas a year.

Since Hilton is forever connected to the tropical cocktail, it appreciates that the specialty drink is more than just a bright, sweet, refreshing sip. Whether it is the flavor, the presentation or something else, just holding that glass in the hand can bring some relaxation, stress reduction, or overall vacation vibe. Whether enjoyed by the pool, sitting on a terrace, or wherever the mood hits, the reality is that one sip can offer a wave of vacation vibes.

At various Hilton properties worldwide, mixologists offer slight variations on the classic recipe. From Hilton Tulum Riviera Maya All-Inclusive Resort’s free-spirit option to London Hilton on Park Lane zero waste initiative, the various locations blend purpose and experience to making memorable refreshment.

As Adam Crocini, senior vice president and global head, Food and Beverage Brands, Hilton said, "Our storied history with the Piña Colada is one of many examples of Hilton ‘firsts’ as it relates to food and beverage and reinforces our position as an industry leader. We continue to lead the charge in cocktail innovation with the iconic drink, modernizing the original recipe with local ingredients, regional flavors and contemporary twists all around the world."

Although many people might long to jump on a plane to explore these creative cocktails, the home bar can shake up a few flavorful pina colada twists. It can be just as simple as switching one of the signature ingredients.

For example, pineapple juice is a must for this cocktail. By using Fresh Victor Pineapple and Ginger Root cocktail mixer, that burst of spice adds a little tingle to the taste. Without being too overpowering, the ginger note lifts the whole flavor and keeps the cocktail from being too cloying.

Another more elaborate idea brings together two rum cocktails, the pina colada and the mojito. Created by Sammy Hagar, the Macadamia Piña-Jito blends two flavors for a perfectly balanced, bright, tropical drink.

Macadamia Pina-jito
Macadamia Pina-jito / Tucker + Hossler Photography

Here’s how to make the Macadamia Piña-Jito.


1 ounce Sammy’s Beach Bar Platinum Rum

1 ounce Sammy’s Beach Bar Red Head Rum

4 fresh mint leaves

½ ounce fresh lime juice

3 ounces Coco Lopez Cream of Coconut

4 fresh pineapple chunks

Soda water, as needed

2 or 3 dashes of Peychaud’s Bitters

Garnish: toasted coconut, fresh pineapple wedge, maraschino cherry


Add mint leaves to the bottom of a hurricane glass. Using a muddler, gently (yet firmly) muddle the mint, add lime juice and set aside. In a blender, add a couple handfuls of ice along with the cream of coconut, pineapple chunks and Beach Bar Platinum Rum. Purée until blended. Pour into the hurricane glass that contains the mint and lime juice, then top with soda water. Float the Beach Bar Red Head Rum on top along with two dashes of bitters. Garnish with toasted coconut, fresh pineapple wedge and a maraschino cherry.

Lastly, for people who just want to drink without having to shake or blend, simply open a can of Cutwater Spirits Pina Colada in a can. The canned cocktail captures that classic flavor without the fuss. Sometimes simplicity is the most refreshing part of enjoying a beverage.

These flavorful pina colada twists will ensure that there is plenty to celebrate and everyone will be ready to escape into that relaxing beverage.