Bahama Bob's Rumstyles

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

A Big New Rum Portal in Barbados

     The Caribbean Journal announced this morning the opening of a brand new rum shop in Barbados.   This has so many exciting ramifications that I can't even begin to tel you about.
     There’s a major new rum shop in the Caribbean  and it’s located inside an Grantley International Airport.   The duty free area at Barbados’ Grantley International Airport has opened a new “Caribbean Rum Collection” area including more than 80 rums from across the Caribbean region.   The shop is an initiative of the West Indies Rum and Spirits Producer Association (WIRSPA) and the Authentic Caribbean Rum Marque (ACR), part of an international campaign to promote the “quality, versatility and quality of Authentic Caribbean Rums.”
     “Our Authentic Caribbean Rums are the epitome of quality for regional products, equal to the highest quality spirits,” said Donville Inniss, Barbados’ Minister for International Business, who urged rum producers to continue their brand-building efforts.   The space will also include information on the brands, on rum production methods and on the cultures that shape the range of Caribbean rum.   It’s part of a broader educational program implemented by WIRSPA on behalf of CARIFORUM member governments, funded by the European Union.  
     “We are truly proud to see this fine collection come together in one place,” said Frank Ward, chairman of the WIRSPA. “We believe that this is the largest selection of Authentic Caribbean Rums available anywhere in the world for Travel Retail customers and are grateful to the Runway for giving our rum this opportunity.”
     I can’t wait to get back to Barbados and have an opportunity to shop this very special rum shop.  Thare are many great rum shops already in Barbados, and this is going to be something that I can fill a case with before returning to Key West.  ;o)

Monday, August 31, 2015

Bahama Cafe Especial

     I was sitting at the bar the other day when it was very empty, dog days of August, and thought about an idea for a new coffee cocktail.   It had to have a real coffee flavor, yet be more along the idea of a daiquiri style cocktail.  I know that lime in your coffee is not a really good idea, but I think you get the idea.

    I have to start with Brinley Gold Shipwreck Coffee Rum, and I want a dry rum like Brugal Extra Dry as well to level it out.   I toyed with some chocolate liqueur, but that would just loose the flavor of the coffee and get to far away from what I was trying to do.   I thought a little further, and remembered that many people like a bit of cream in their coffee and a little bit of sweetener.  So I put them with it and I was ready for a cocktail "wake me up".

Bahama Cafe Especial

  • 2 oz. Brinley Gold Shipwreck Coffee Rum
  • 1 oz. Brugal Extra Dry Rum
  • 3/4 oz. El Dorado Rum Cream
  • 1/2 oz. Agave Nectar
Place all ingredients except the El Dorado Rum Cream in a shaker filled with ice.  Shake until fully chilled.  Strain into a cocktail glass and float with El Dorado Rum Cream.  Top with fresh ground nutmeg and enjoy.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Early Morning with Thunder Rumbling in the Background

     Summer time in the Keys has its thunderstorms.  The intense cloud formations that are sometimes very ominous looking can be very beautiful as well.  This morning is one of those days.  Enjoy all of the beauty of these ominous clouds as they reflect off of the water to create a beautiful picture.  ;o)

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Selvarey Rums Expand Their Distribution

Selvarey Cocoa
     Selvarey Rums has announced that it is expanding its distribution to Florida, Hawaii, South Carolina, California, Nevada: (Southern Wine and Spirits), Georgia: (Savannah Distributing), New Jersey: (Fedway Associates), New York: (Empire Merchants)Tennessee: (Lipman Brothers), Washington DC: (Washington Wholesale).  This means that these fine rums will be available very soon on many more shelves and cocktail lounges  here in the US.  Previously only available in California and Nevada, this is very welcome news.

     Brought together by a lifelong passion for rum, Bruno Mars teamed up with three rum aficionados to change people's perception of what rum can be. After years of searching, they finally found legendary Master Blender Francisco "Don Pancho" Fernandez, former "Maestro de Ronero" for Havana Club who carved out a distillery from the jungles of Panama known for producing some of the finest rums in the world. Together they created Selvarey.

     Selvarey White  a blend of three- and five- year-old rums, is aged in American Oak casks and carbon-filtered to remove most of the color without losing the deep flavors imparted during the aging process. Unlike many white rums, Selvarey has been crafted with the distinct goal of being fine enough to sip on the rocks. Yet it makes a superlative cocktail..

     Selvarey Cacao  the world's premier chocolate spirit, boasts a rich five-year-old Panamanian rum whose inherent character is brought out by the infusion of natural chocolate. SelvaRey Cacao Rum can be sipped neat or on the rocks.

     These are very nice rums and ones that are welcome additions in many fine places, be sure a try them if you haven't had the opportunity before.  Especially those of  you that are of the chocolate persuasion.   ;o)

Friday, August 28, 2015

So You Think You Want to Start a Craft Distillery?

Cayman Spirits Distillery
     I was once asked how do you make a million dollars in auto racing, you start with 5 million and when you get down to 1 million, you quit.   Starting up a "craft distillery" is much the same.  The expense of purchasing equipment, securing space that has zoning for a distillery, water and power requirements available and that is before you start looking at all of the legal hoops you have to jump through.

Small Copper Alembis 10 Liter Still
     This is a very glamorous idea, but like auto racing to do it well is very expensive.   I'd love to be able to create my own rums, and introduce them to my friends to share, but it is not that simple.  Here in the United States owning a still for anything other that producing alcohol for external use is strictly "verboten".   Besides the legal issues involved, there are also health concerns to worry about. Home mad alcohol can become tainted with toxic liquids, especially methanol, the form of alcohol reputed to cause blindness and death. Making moonshine also poses obvious risks of fire or explosion.  Alcohol made at home with out the proper legal permits and licences is known as moonshine and the laws against moonshine may place those who wish to make their own line of commercial rum or other spirit in a tricky situation. 

Copper Alembic "Thumper"  Pot Still
     Robinson, at Moonshine Still Pro, likens existing distillation laws to a sort of Catch-22.  You can't learn to operate a still with out a still, but most who start in the business start with a small "secret  still" in their basement or garage.   While most states prohibit making home made alcohol for consumption, state laws sometimes conflict with federal law.   In Missouri, for example, a person 21 or over may produce  up to 100 gallons of spirits per year for personal consumption without a permit.   But federal law trumps state law, and to the feds, distilling at home for personal consumption is illegal, period.   "If you distill without permits, you're looking at roughly a dozen felonies," says Tom Hogue, spokesman for the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau. "It's not something you want to be doing."

Troy Roberts at Drum Circle Distillery
     The odd part is we haven't even began to talk about the cost of the materials, supplies and equipment you are going to need.    Stills depending on the size can go up into the hundred thousands alone, no to mention the other necessary stainless vats etc.  Barrels are in short supply these days and very expensive.   Troy Roberts of Drum Circle Distilling in Sarasota, Florida has spent since 2003 making his dream of making his fine craft distillery a reality.  Today his fine rums are very hard to find, but the search is definitely worth the effort for the rewards of his rums.

      As I said start with 5 million, it's not easy, but if you are good at running a still, blending, marketing, legal stuff, health stuff, and have the patience, you will be able to open a craft distillery.  You might want to add another attraction like a restaurant or gift shop to help off set some of the costs of the distilling and aging of you rum.  ;o)

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Cartavio XO and Rat Key, What a Combination.

     It is another dog day of August and headed out of the sun to Rat Key with a bottle of Cartavio XO
for the perfect rum sipping afternoon.   Light breezes beautiful blue water and a bottle of fine rum make these afternoons of a pirate perfect.  Wish you could all join us in this wonderful experience.

Cartavio XO
     The Cartavio XO Rum from Peru is a very unique expression that has so many connections to great rums from around the world.   From the 18 years spent in French and American Oak Barrels to tall of the experience of Federico Schultz, master distiller and blender, this is a Thoroughbred rum.    Frederico Shults is another graduate of  Havana Club and an apprentice to Don Pancho Fernandez, bringing great expertise to Cartavio's rum making.  Classic packaging with the wire cap retainer makes this an attractive eye catching expression you can't walk past.

     I have to say that a perfect day is being made better as I lean back at the water's edge and enjoy the beautiful mahogany color and sweet and lightly spicy aromas that are flowing from my glass.  There is an initial sweetness that grows warmer and spicier as it carries itself to the warm and spicy finish that seems to linger and linger.

     All you have to do to enjoy your life like a pirate as I am is find a water's edge and a wonderful bottle of your favorite rum, Cartavio is a great example.  Just put "your ass in lawn chair and your toes in the sand" and call out a hearty "ARGH" and enjoy the rum and the moment.  ;o)

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Plantation Rum Adds Plantation Pineapple to its Core Range of Products

Guillaume Lamy introduces Plantation Pineapple
     This is a great bit of news for us at the Rum Bar in Key West, because I didn't think that we were going to be able to enjoy this wonderful expression here in the United States because of its very limited production.   I have bought a case of it for the Rum Bar and we are now serving it.   The unique method of production gives it a very special flavor unlike any other flavored rums.

     First unveiled at "Tales of the Cocktail" in New Orleans last year, Plantation Pineapple Rum – Stiggin’s Fancy was initially planned as a “one-off” launch, with just 1,000 bottles sold in New Orleans and a small number of other US markets.   Cognac Ferrand founder Alexandre Gabriel has now added the expression to Plantation Rum’s core range as a limited edition due to the seasonality of the Queen Victoria pineapples it uses.   Gabriel first created the rum in collaboration with cocktail historian David Wondrich, inspired by several traditional recipes used in the 1800s.   
     Plantation Pineapple Rum – Stiggin’s Fancy is produced by first infusing the rinds of Queen Victoria pineapple with Plantation 3 Stars white rum for one week before they are distilled in pot stills.   Separately, the flesh of the Queen Victoria pineapples are infused with rich, aged Plantation Original Dark Rum for three months. Then these two liquids are married together and the rum is put into casks where it rests for three months.   
“David and I did this project in part out of sheer curiosity,” said Gabriel. “Mostly, however, we did it because the pineapple is the symbol of hospitality.    “The 1824 Journal of Patent Inventions notes that it was customary in the West Indies to offer pineapple rum to visiting European friends. Following the West Indian tradition, Plantation Pineapple Rum is our gift to you.”
The expression is named after the Reverend Stiggins, a character in Charles Dickens’ The Pickwick Papers whose favored tipple was pineapple rum.
Plantation Pineapple Rum – Stiggin’s Fancy will be available in April, May, July and August each year at an RRP of US$34.99. It is now rolling out nationally across the US.
The variant was named by The Spirits Business as one of the most innovative spirits launches of 2014.