Someone was smart enough to decide that in the dead center of the heat in August, there should be a day that celebrates rum, that beautiful liquid that is the basis for most all of your favourite tropical cocktails.
This year, National Rum Day falls on August 16th. To celebrate, here’s a few rums worth having in your collection, and a couple cocktails that do them justice.
The Classic White Rum
Brugal Extra Dry
This Dominican rum is the secret weapon of many great bartenders. Aged as long as the Brugal añejo rum (between two and five years), it’s triple-filtered to remove the color.
Recipe: A great white rum deserves to be featured in a classic daiquiri:
- 2 oz of white rum
- 0.75 oz of freshly squeezed lime juice
- 2 tsp of organic cane sugar
Add lime juice and sugar to a cocktail shaker and stir to dissolve. Add rum and ice, shake vigorously and pour into a chilled coupe glass, you want the daiquiri to be cold.
Slightly Aged Rum
Aged for up to 12 years, this is a nice bottle of rum to have around the house for both making sophisticated cocktails and sipping. This is the rum you want at a reasonable price point for all occasions.
Recipe: A classic old fashioned with a rum twist to compliment the already well designed spirit:
- 2 oz Rum
- 1 tsp Demorara Syrup
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters
- 2 dashes Orange Bitters
Mix two cups Demerara (aka. natural brown) sugar with one cup water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved. Cool before using.
Combine rum, syrup, and bitters in a mixing glass with large ice. Stir vigorously and strain into a double rocks glass over one large ice cube. Garnish with generous orange twist.
Nicely Spiced Rum
Chairman’s Reserve Spiced
Coming out of Saint Lucia, Chairman’s Reserve is a nice rum already, but the spiced version brings in some additional character with notes of coconut, allspice, clove, and vanilla along with lemon and orange. A Caribbean bark called Richeria Grandis rounds out this complex spiced rum.
Recipe: A nice tropical twist for spiced rum enthusiasts is the way to go here:
- 1.5 oz spiced rum
- 0.5 oz triple sec
- 1 oz fresh orange juice
- 1 oz pineapple juice
Combine all ingredients in a glass and fill with ice. Stir to combine and garnish with a fresh orange slice.
The Coconut Rum
Koloa Coconut Rum
While it’s not from the Caribbean, don’t knock this absolutely stellar rum from Hawaii. Made from raw cane sugar and cut with filtered rainwater from ancient Mount Waialeale, there’s a wonderful flavor of baby coconut flesh at the front which leads into a toasted coconut finish.
Recipe: This should be obvious, a coconut rum is the perfect base for a killer Pina Colada:
- 2 oz Koloa Coconut Rum
- 2 oz Coco Lopez Cream of Coconut
- 2 oz Pineapple Juice
- 1 cup Crushed Ice
Combine ingredients and blend or shake well. Pour into a suitable glass with crushed ice cubes if needed. Garnish with a pineapple wedge and cherry.
A Rum As Fine As Whisky
Flor De Cana 25 year old
Regarded as one of the best rums in the world, this 25 year old bottle is an amazing reflection of just how versatile rum can be.
It has an exquisite aroma with notes of vanilla, wood and dark cocoa. Flavour of fruity notes of almond and nuts, with a full and long finish that lingers in the palate.
Recipe: No need to mess with this, it’s best enjoyed neat or on the rocks.