Rum and Espresso Cocktail

Combine Rum and Espresso with Maple Syrup and you’ll be off and running with the Rum and Espresso Cocktail that’s perfect for Halloween!

Halloween Express Cocktail - Espresso, Rum, Maple Syrup and Half and Half.

OK, naming drinks is not my forte but I thought about making a play on words on this night when we have to keep our mojo going far longer than we might normally want to. Halloween Express came to mind; actually my poking fun at how many people say expresso instead of espresso…you know, with an S? But making Google happy and the cocktail easier to find I went with the boring ‘Rum and Espresso Cocktail.’

Yes there is espresso, in fact this Espresso Cocktail has rum, espresso, maple syrup (YUM!) and half and half. Part coffee. Part cocktail. Part dessert. All good. Despite my protestations about not loving all things Halloween, this year I’m sort of looking forward to seeing the kids on the street; they’ve made it fun again!

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I just love the little kiddos on my street and I’m already hearing what they’ll be wearing so yes, sort of excited about seeing them because they’re so excited. With over a dozen kids on my block I want to be prepared so I picked up this mega bag of candy. I hid it from myself so as not to devour any before Halloween; hope I remember where I put it!

Halloween Candy

I do have a Jack-O-Lantern sitting outside (the one in these photos actually) and I have a real one too but I don’t carve it because I want to cook it after Halloween and freeze the pumpkin for Thanksgiving pies. If you’ve never made your own pumpkin puree; it’s so worth it. Did you know that the canned pumpkin you buy is actually a mixture of different squashes?

Tasting true, fresh pumpkin is life changing. OK, maybe not but it is certainly enlightening. OK, I sort of got off track there but I admit I am passionate about fresh pumpkin!

The Rum and Espresso Cocktail I made for Halloween came about because I wanted something warming to sip while I wait for the hordes to arrive and while I might love warm apple cider, I still like my cocktails cold. You know I put a lot of thought and consternation into my cocktail making; as in I had a bottle of fantastic maple syrup from my friend Paula sitting in my pantry right next to a jar of dried espresso.

Add this fantastic rum from the folks at The Real McCoy on the counter and the wheels started churning. Much like I never drink coffee without half and half I couldn’t imagine this without it either and before you know it A Star Was Born.

Halloween Express Cocktail - Espresso, Rum, Maple Syrup and Half and Half.

Speaking of The Real McCoy? First, don’t you just love the name? Named after Bill McCoy, a pioneering rum runner during Prohibition.

Bill would fill a boat with Caribbean rum and sail to New York where he acted as an offshore liquor store and was protected by his location in international waters keeping him out of the hands of the law. Dubbed ‘the Real McCoy’ because it was not watered down like most of Prohibition-era booze it was a huge favorite then and I LOVED it now.

This Five Year Old rum has been produced as a homage to that very rum from long ago and it’s even distilled at the same Barbados distillery before being aged in used bourbon barrels.

On the nose, the amber colored rum is full of oak, vanilla and baking spices. Take a sip and it’s warm and slightly viscous, with flavors ranging from caramel and almonds to toffee, dried fruits and lots more oak.

The addition of the maple syrup in this cocktail was an important feature as it kept it from becoming too cloyingly sweet as it might have with a simple syrup. A very solid rum with a surprisingly oaky component; I enjoyed it much more than some rums I’ve tried that are too vanilla heavy.

A great all around rum, superb in this cocktail and I’m sure it will be equally fantastic in my holiday rum cake.

Halloween Express Cocktail - Espresso, Rum, Maple Syrup and Half and Half.

I made it while my friend Sandy was here visiting. We had enjoyed a bagel and coffee and I needed to get this cocktail made and photographed. Her look was priceless. I believe she was almost speechless and trust me that’s a rarity.

It’s sweet, there is no doubt but not too sweet (at least not for us!) so it’s most definitely an after dinner cocktail; I would serve it for dessert even but I have to say we sure enjoyed it early afternoon.

Maybe it’s what put just enough extra steam in our step that I finally got out to buy some Fall decor for my front porch before the season is over! Do you go all out for Halloween? With that bag of candy with 245 pieces and a pitcher of these cocktails on hand…come on by!

PIN IT! ‘Rum and Espresso Cocktail’

Rum and Espresso Cocktail is Served in an Irish Coffee Glass with a Handle
Rum and Espresso Cocktail is Served in an Irish Coffee Glass with a Handle
Halloween Express Cocktail - Espresso, Rum, Maple Syrup and Half and Half.

Rum and Espresso Cocktail

A nice evening dessert cocktail combining rum, espresso, maple syrup and half and half. It's a nice rich finish for Halloween (or any night for that matter).
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 minute
Total Time 11 minutes
Course Rum
Cuisine American
Servings 1 Cocktail
Calories 187 kcal


  • 3 ounces espresso I used dried that I mixed with hot water and then put in the fridge to cool for about 15 minutes.
  • 1 ounce rum
  • 1 ounce maple syrup
  • 1 ounce half and half
  • Cinnamon sugar for rimming (Mix cinnamon with sugar with a 1:4 ratio.


  • Use clean fingers and a couple of drops of maple syrup to wipe the rim of the glass with syrup. Dip the rim into the cinnamon sugar.
  • Put the remaining ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake vigorously. Strain and pour the contents over ice in a cappucino or Irish coffee cup.


I love using cake decorating sugar for rimming glasses; you can find it at Michael’s.


Nutrition Facts
Rum and Espresso Cocktail
Serving Size
1 Cocktail
Amount per Serving
% Daily Value*
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword cocktail, espresso, half and half, maple syrup, rum
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

This post was sponsored by The Real McCoy Spirits but all commentary is my own.

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    1. don’t think I didn’t put a lot of thought into that orange. When I bought the napkins I picked the ones that had the least amount. Notice that drink shaker, its black, silver and purple…that wasn’t easy to find!

      A friend of mine was here when I was setting it up and she loves all things Halloween. I had a package of straws with varied Halloween colors and I’m sure if not for her insistence that straw would be purple and white polka dots! She was right though; this looked best. Good thing I had a Halloween stylist on hand huh?

    1. You and me both Amanda; I think I could drink it straight. Regarding the pumpkin there is no other way than fresh for me either.

  1. Halloween has gotten to be such a big holiday! It’s not one of my favorites, but I do like looking at all of the neat ways people decorate their yards (some real creativity going on out there). Thanks for the intro to the Real McCoy — I’ve not had, nor heard of, this. But of course now I have to try it. I mean, it’s the real McCoy. 😉 Good drink — thanks.

  2. Oh I wish we still lived a mile apart– I would be your first trick or treator on the 31st just to share your cocktail. Maybe I’ll start a new tradition and make one here for myself. This one looks like a keeper for sure!

  3. Glad to see you are getting into the spirit of Halloween this year, no pun intended. Loved reading about the history of The Real McCoy rum and how you came to concoct this lovely drink. Enjoy it as you shell out on Halloween:)

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