Pineapple and coffee pop in The Rover’s Standover Man cocktail

The Rover's Alex Gondzioulis shares his recipe for a whisky, rum, and coffee drink to remember.

Sometimes the best cocktails you’ll drink are just damn tasty, and that’s it — there’s no further thought required, no over-analysis sought — they’re just delicious. They're the way drinks should be.

But then, less often, you’ll taste a top flight cocktail — one that is also damn tasty — but there’s something in there that jumps out at you, and demands that not only should you drink more, you ought to think more about it, too.

That’s how I felt drinking The Rover’s Standover Man. It’s a delicious drink, first and foremost, but the thing that made it memorable to me? Its key flavour combo of pineapple and coffee.

“Coffee and pineapple has always been this fucking really great flavour pairing,” says Alex Gondzioulis. He’s the group bars manager for Liquid & Larder, and crafted the latest cocktail list for recently relaunched Surry Hills bar, The Rover.

Except, I press him, coffee and pineapple isn’t a flavour pairing that most people would think would work.

“The baristas and coffee aficionados that I’ve talked to have been like, well, this bean has notes of pineapple to it,” Gondzioulis says. “If the coffee itself has those notes in it, then you can draw that out.”

The drink itself is a Milk Punch of sorts, featuring the smoky whisky that is Lagavulin, ginger, pineapple, coffee, and rum —  it’s all batched and ready to go before service, the bartender pouring the drink over a good block of ice before hitting it with a dash of bitters.

The Standover Man at The Rover in Surry Hills. Photo: Boothby
The Standover Man at The Rover in Surry Hills. Photo: Boothby

Standover Man


  • 100ml lime juice
  • 150ml pineapple juice
  • 50ml ginger syrup
  • 75ml Lagavulin 16 peated whisky
  • 100ml Mr Black Coffee Liqueur
  • 200ml Stone’s Ginger Wine
  • 250ml Pampero Especial aged rum


  1. Combine everything together into a 1L jug.
  2. In a separate 2L jug, add 250ml full cream milk.
  3. Slowly pour the alcohol and juice mix into the milk, allowing the milk to curdle. Leave to sit for 10 minutes.
  4. After 10 minutes, filter the punch through a chinois lined with two oil filters until it runs crystal clear.
  5. To serve, stir 90ml of the filtered punch with 1 dash of Angostura bitters over ice.
  6. Strain into a rocks glass on a large block of ice.
  7. Garnish with dehydrated pineapple pulp.

The batch will make approximately 10 serves.

Recipe by Alex Gondzioulis at The Rover, Sydney.

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