You have always heard the expression “Somewhere it is 5 o’clock”, but as we all know, it is always 5 o’clock in the water. Whether you are celebrating the capture of a lifetime or drowning out your pain of losing one, there is nothing so enjoyable as kicking your feet and enjoying a refreshing cocktail after a long day in the water.
For this series, we are united YETI to sit down with some of our mutual fishing friends and get their festive drinks cut. In this episode, we met the legendary Florida Keys guide: Brandon Cyr to see how he makes the “Dark and Stormy” cocktail with his signature, incredibly simple and delicious.
Who is Brandon Cyr?
Brandon Cyr is the name that has echoed through the ingrained lips of the permit and tarpon that dared to swim near the southern tip of Florida. Mr. Cyr, a 4th generation Floridian, was born under the shadow of a charter captain and who at the age of 6 had a rod in his hands and a big fish in his mind. Nowadays, Brandon is best known for his bizarre ability to search for and place a fly in the mouth of some of the most challenging fish on the planet to aim with a fly rod.
If you have been fortunate to be a fisherman or a client in the bow of his boat, you can attest to the raw passion he brings to his pursuits. Pushing the envelope with a level of consistency similar to that of an athlete in the NBA or NFL, Brandon forever changed the state of the game in fishing in the Florida Keys.
While you will most often find Brandon at the gym, in the water or teaching his newborn daughter the sport of fly fishing; after a long day, he enjoys kicking and tying some flies for the following days, all while enjoying a cold “Dark and Stormy” cocktail.
How to make your own, “Dark and Stormy” – Brandon style:
Rum of your choice (Here we will use Frigate reserve: A popular choice by another legendary saltwater fisherman and ambassador YETI: Flip Balls).
(Bonus): A cold cup to beat the Florida heat.
Fill your cup full of 3 quarters with ice. Remember not to overfill it so that you have no room for your other ingredients. Remember also, your ice will melt, and depending on how strong you want your final product, this will dilute the second half of the drink (for some this may be positive, for some, less).
Throw your rum. How much rum you want to apply to the drink depends on you. For a nice clean taste, we recommend a glass to a glass and a half, but it all depends on the type of rum you use and what kind of day you spent. Always remember to pour responsibly.
Add your ginger beer. We recommend pouring enough so that it is pushed over the ice with the rum. As for the brand to use, it certainly depends on you. Just choose something you would like without rum first. This is your carbonator.
Squeeze your limes. Being at Keys, we thought it appropriate to use Key Limes for Brandon’s Dark and Stormy. However, you can certainly use anything that you have more easily accessible. Just make sure they are ripe and liquid.
Once you have squeezed about 2-3 limes, feel free to throw them in the drink. They will add a little extra flavor and aroma that binds the drink together. Once you have done this, stir your mixture a little. A stirring traditional cocktail spoon is recommended, but feel free to use any household items you lay down on (be sure to wash your hands if stirring with your fingers – especially when serving guests 😉
Add your garnish with mint. Depending on how aromatic you want your drink, throw 2-3 mint leaves on the ice. Once you have done that, give it one last spin to mix all those flavors together.
Throw in your favorite cup and enjoy. Whether you are drinking alone or with friends, remember to enjoy the fruits of your labor and take a second to reflect on the day. A wonderful activity that compliments a “Darkness and Storm” is a post-addiction session, serving as a reminder of what lies ahead…
Symbolic of Brandon’s hometown and a cornerstone of his ancestry: the future and the past, Dark and Stormy is a brilliant representation of Fishing in the Florida Keys both literally and figuratively. While sometimes the dark and stormy skies will command the water under your bow, there is something sweet in the bitter nature of the country. Whether you are an avid saltwater fisherman, or have never stepped on a foot in the sand, this cocktail recipe is a great mix to relax after a long day doing what we love. To make sure you can continue to do this, always remember drink responsibly.
Thank you Brandon Cyr for dedicating a day with us on the water and telling us about his beautiful home waters. Also, thanks for YETI to keep our glasses full and our cocktails cool. If you liked this part, be on the lookout for more like it online. Happy!
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