The Martinique Crusta

Today we share with you the Martinique Crusta, found in The Gentleman’s Companion, Around the World with Jigger, Beaker and Flask written by Charles Baker. Baker recounts his introduction to this artful creation while traveling through the West Indies in 1929. In a previous post we shared with you the Brandy Crusta, seemingly the first and most famous of “Crustas”. What makes a Crusta, a Crusta is the garnishing of the glass with a whole rind of citrus and sugaring the rim of the glass. Below we offer you Baker’s recipe word for word. Preparing a Crusta requires a sharp knife, steady hand and a passion for cocktails that moves far beyond the simple combination of ingredients. The rewards of such diligence in mixology will be on the faces of those lucky enough to share your effort.

“THE MARTINIQUE CRUSTA, which We Found Waiting for Us in Fort de France on the Occasion of Our First Trip through the West Indies, in 1929.

This effective and eventful drink uses no man-made cup, but the reversed skin of a small orange or lemon, first moistened inside and on the lip with lemon juice or rum, then dipping in lots of fine white sugar, until encrusted evenly on inner yellow side of the whole reversed skin…Now stand this in any stemmed glass that will fit it.

The other method is to peel off a small orange, or lemon, in a single unbroken spiral. Take a small goblet, moisten inside with lemon juice or rum, then line with the spiral peel, and the whole dipped in fine sugar, leaving what clings, clinging.

Now chill either type of container for a good hour in the refrigerator, and into it strain the following, after shaking well with cracked ice.”

  • St. Croix or Martinique rum, 1 ½ Jiggers
  • Lime, juice, 1 average size
  • Maraschino, 1 tsp scant
  • Angostura, 3 dashes
  • Gomme syrup, 1 tsp, to taste

Garnish with a stick of fresh pineapple, a slice of orange, or anything that suits.


St Croix or Martinique Rum = Gold Rum

Maraschino = Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur

Gomme Syrup = Simple Sugar Syrup