Rum is a distilled spirit traditionally made from sugarcane juice or molasses and typically aged in oak barrels, although experimentation with other barrels also takes place. Rum is most widely associated with the islands of the Caribbean and Latin American countries, but it is made in many countries around the world, including Scotland, Sweden, and the U.S. In Spanish-speaking countries rum is called ron, though no one knows for sure where the word “rum” itself was born. White or silver rum is either unaged or is lightly aged, then filtered to strip out the color; it is generally intended for use in cocktails. Gold or amber rum is aged in oak barrels, though there are no agreed upon standards on how long this term, nor any real distinction between the terms. Dark rum is usually made from caramelized molasses, aged for a longer period of time, and usually in barrels that have been more deeply charred. Overproof rum can hit up to 160 proof and is intended for use in cocktails, including the Volcano, where the overproof rum is floated on top and ignited. Spiced and flavored rums are also quite popular.

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Review: Equiano Rum Original

By Christopher Null | September 20, 2020 |

While I’ve had rum from both Africa and the Caribbean, Equiano bills itself as “the world’s first African and Caribbean rum.” Equiano (now billed as Equiano Original) is distilled at Gray’s distillery in Mauritius, then matured in ex-Cognac casks for 10 years. From there, it’s blended with rum from Barbados’s Foursquare distillery, which is aged…

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Review: Holmes Cay Single Cask Rum – Fiji 2004 and Guyana 2005

By Christopher Null | August 19, 2020 |

Holmes Cay, which launched its first independently-bottled rum in last year’s Barbados 2005 release, is back at it with two new expressions, one a 2004 from Fiji 2004 and the other a 2005 demerara from Guyana’s Port Mourant. Both are bottled from single casks of 100% pot still rums, bottled at cask strength with no…

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Review: Black Tot Rum (2020)

By Christopher Null | August 6, 2020 |

Black Tot Day occurred on July 31, 1970, and it marks the final day when British sailors were issued a formal rum ration by the Royal Navy. The catch? The Navy still had rum that they hadn’t doled out, so they sold it off to private enterprise. Some of this stock reportedly dated back to…

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Review: Plantation Rum – Peru 2004, Barbados 2005, and Fiji 2009

By Rob Theakston | August 3, 2020 |

Believe it or not, living in the epicenter of the bourbon universe has its drawbacks. While we are — or were — usually first to market with numerous special and limited edition bourbon releases, there is a painful deficit of new and special rums and single malts to keep things interesting. So when a select…

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Review: Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum and Spiced Rum (2020)

By Christopher Null | July 20, 2020 |

Two years ago we took our first foray into Saint Lucia’s Chairman’s Reserve brand. Today we have another round with the Chairman, including both the mainline “Original” as well as the brand’s spiced rum. Both are 80 proof. Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum (2020) – This is a blend of column and pot still rum, average…

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Review: Appleton Estate Rum 8 Years Old Reserve

By Christopher Null | July 8, 2020 |

Recently, Appleton — the pride of Jamaica — announced a new permanent addition to its lineup of rums. The new 8 Year Old Reserve, from Master Blender Joy Spence, is designed to be “Appleton Estate’s most versatile expression of aged rum.” It also coincides with a relaunch of the entire brand, which features new bottle…

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Review: Rhum J.M. Blanc, XO French Oak, and Sirop (2020)

By Christopher Null | July 2, 2020 |

We’ve looked the agricole rums of Martinique’s Rhum J.M. on many occasions, but this is only our second spin with J.M.’s white rum and our first formal review of any of J.M.’s XO bottlings. We also take a peek at J.M.’s Sirop de Canne, a flavored sugar syrup built for mixing with its own agricole.…

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Review: Rums of Rhum Clement – Cask Collection, VSOP, Creole Shrubb, and Coconut Liqueur (2020)

By Christopher Null | June 26, 2020 |

A recent virtual road show from Spiribam — the corporate owner of Rhum J.M., Bounty, Chairman’s, and Admiral Rodney rums — brought a number of its brands into the limelight. While we’ll have coverage of a couple of additional ones soon, we first look at one of the company’s most prized operations, Rhum Clement, an…

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Review: Grander Panama Rum Trophy Release (2020)

By Christopher Null | June 8, 2020 |

Hot on the heels of its rye-finished special release, Grander Panama Rum is back with another special edition — or rather, the beginning of one. The plan is for Grander Trophy Release to drop in two batches each year. Each release will be a small batching of Panama-distilled rums, all between 8 and 15 years…

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Review: Rhum Barbancourt 15 Years Old

By Drew Beard | June 6, 2020 |

Haiti’s oldest distillery – actually, one of its oldest companies – happens to be Société du Rhum Barbancourt, makers of Rhum Barbancourt. Opened in 1862, the distillery is currently helmed by the fifth generation of the founding family. This rum is aged in limousin oak and made from sugar cane juice in the style of…

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