A Mountain of Crushed Ice is Rum Blogger of the Year 2013 UK Rumfest Golden Rum Barrel Awards

Rum barrel award 2

How a Mai Tai should NOT be and how it should be

Demerara Rums from Guyana

demerara-private-bottlings1

Demerara Rums Part Two

dem-rums-port-royal

Demerara Rums Part Three

demerara-part-2

Cachaca and Rhum agricole, what`s the difference?

cachaca-and-rhum-agricole

Sugarcane!

sugarcane

Tahitian Vanilla Syrup

vanilla-syrup

Hibiscus Grenadine

hibiscus-grenadine-jar

Gomme syrup

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Learn how to easily open a coconut and mix up a tasty Coconaut.

newcoconaut1

View my Cocktails on flickr p1

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View my Cocktails on flickr p3

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TOTC 2015: The Annual Bar Fight Club at the 2015 Tales of the Cocktail Announces its Seven Finalists

TOTC 2015 BANNER HEADER

So here they are, the seven finalists to take part in this years Bar Fight Club at the Tales. This was announced by Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal who are very excited to announce the outstanding final seven bar teams competing in this year’s annual cocktail battle — Bar Fight Club at Tales of The Cocktail 2015. Each of the prestigious bars selected are world-class cocktail havens with exceptionally talented bar teams that constantly strive to push cocktail culture forward.

Where many cocktail competitions are bartender vs. bartender, Bar Fight Club pits bar against bar to face off not only with drinks but also on ambiance, service and style. Taking place Thursday, July 16th at Generations Hall in New Orleans.

These bar teams will be coming in from around the country, and for the first time in Bar Fight Club history, around the world as well, to duke it out in a spirited battle and claim the ultimate bar bragging rights. In a year of unprecedented interest from highly regarded bars across the globe, the final seven participants were determined from a group of thirty supremely qualified semifinalists.

THE HIGHLY ANTICIPATED BAR FIGHT CLUB FINALISTS ARE:

ABV – San Francisco, CA, USA
The Aviary – Chicago, IL, USA
Black Pearl – Melbourne, Australia
Candelaria – Paris, France
Extra Fancy – Brooklyn, NY, USA
Pastry War – Houston, TX, USA
White Lyan – London, UK

The rules are simple – there are none! Each participating team will create a pop-up version of their bar at the event and mix up unique and standout cocktails featuring the spirits of The 86 Company’s portfolio – Fords Gin, Caña Brava Rum, Aylesbury Duck Vodka & Tequila Cabeza – as well as those from Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal – VIDA, Chichicapa, Minero, San Luis del Rio, Santo Domingo Albarradas & Crema de Mezcal.

“We couldn’t be happier to once again be a part of the Tales of the Cocktail Bar Fight Club along with Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal,” says The 86 Co. co-founder Simon Ford. “Each of the final bar teams selected are successful, innovative and at the top of their game.

We’re very excited to see the drinks they come up with and which bar is really going to take their cocktail game to the next level. We have no doubt that this night will be one of the biggest ones on the Tales calendar and are thrilled & honored to be back again!”

Along with Ford, the expert panel of judges will consist of some of the most influential people in our craft, including Steve Olson, Tony Abou-Ganim, Jackson Cannon, John Gertsen, Jim Meehan, Jacques Bezuidenhout, Eric Alperin, Erik Lorincz, Bridget Albert, Misty Kalkofen, Charles Joly, and Julie Reiner. The winners will be chosen based on a range of criteria covering cocktail making & presentation with bonus points awarded to the teams who make the most noise to keep the crowd raging all night long. Also up for grabs will be a prize for People’s Choice, chosen by the Bar Fight Club crowd that night.

There is no doubt that as one of the most anticipated cocktail competitions for Tales of the Cocktail® festival participants, this year’s Bar Fight Club is sure to blow folks away. Get your shakers up and be ready for The 86 Co. and Del Maguey to turn up the heat once again at one of the hottest cocktail events of 2015.

The Spirits Are Calling. Will you answer? They’re calling you to New Orleans for five days of seminars, tastings, product launches, competitions, networking events and so much more at the world’s premier professional cocktail event.

So if you`re planning to attend the Tales this year make sure not to miss the Bar Fight Club!

Beachbum Berry Tiki Barware to be Introduced by Cocktail Kingdom and Jeff Beachbum Berry!

Pearl Diver 3

Premium Bar Tools & Glassware to Complement the Current Tiki Cocktail & Bar Renaissance!

Named “one of the instigators of the cocktail revolution” by Esquire’s David Wondrich, and one of Imbibe Magazine’s “25 Most Influential Cocktail Personalities of the Past Century,” Jeff “Beachbum” Berry is the author of six books on vintage Tiki drinks and cuisine, including the recently published Potions of the Caribbean: 500 Years of Tropical Drinks and the People Behind Them (Cocktail Kingdom, October 2014; $27.95).

Pearl Divers collage

As a natural progression from this position of authority, Beachbum Berry has teamed up with Cocktail Kingdom, the premier barware producer and cocktail book publisher, to create the Beachbum Berry line of glassware and tools designed specifically for the Tiki enthusiast, which will be available starting late Monday, May 18, at www.CocktailKingdom.com.

Drawing on Tiki’s long history, Beachbum Berry and Cocktail Kingdom combined their talents to recreate items that were once essential items at the best Tiki bars and restaurants across the U.S.

Pearl Diver Glass

Beachbum Berry Tiki Line glasses

Named for the Pearl Diver cocktail, this uniquely shaped glass held many exotic drinks in its heyday of the mid-20th century – including the Planter’s Punch at Don the Beachcomber’s in Hollywood, the Sumatra Sam at Doc’s Place in Toronto, and the Deep Sea Diver at Mai-Kai in Ft. Lauderdale. By the 1970s, however, the distinctive but delicate glass had all but disappeared making them very rare, highly prized collector’s items.

Excellent for any tall drink, the Beachbum Berry Pearl Diver Glass from Cocktail Kingdom is an exact replica of the original exotic design.

Pack of 4 ($36.95), case of 24 ($179.00)

Swizzle Cup

Swizzle Cup

The long-lost Swizzle Cup came to fame in the 1940s at the hands of Don the Beachcomber, the father of the Tiki bar and the Tiki drink, who served up wildly popular faux-Polynesian concoctions, most of which had Caribbean roots. Among them were Swizzles, based on a West Indian technique of churning drinks with a spoked twig that had been whittled into a “swizzle stick.”

By the 1950s, the sleek metal Swizzle Cups frothed with exotic cocktails, but were expensive to make (and replace when customers absconded with them); by the 1980s they had disappeared from Tiki bars and been replaced with standard Collins glasses.

Cocktail Kingdom’s Swizzle Cup is an updated version of the original bespoke vessel – sleeker and made of lighter-weight stainless steel, perfect for any julep, cobbler, swizzle or other long drink.

($14.95)

Skull Bar Spoon

skull bar spoon

Tiki drinks didn’t just cater to 1950s suburban fantasies of a work-free island paradise; there was also the call of adventure, epitomized by such classic Tiki cocktails as “Skull & Bones,” “Shrunken Skull” and “Cannibal Grog,” drawn from pirate history and headhunter lore. To help you mix such South Seas concoctions, Cocktail Kingdom and Beachbum Berry created the Skull Bar Spoon for that touch of deserted island vibe.

The new Beachbum Berry Tiki items join Cocktail Kingdom’s other Tiki tools, including the Navy Grog Cone ($17.95), which was first created by Don the Beachcomber for the purpose of forming his signature ice-cone garnish in faux-Polynesian punches.

Tiki’s history and extensive array of cocktails can be explored further in Beachbum Berry’s book, Potions of the Caribbean, which is available at www.CocktailKingdom along with the new Tiki tools and glassware, all of which can be shipped nationally and internationally; shipping rates apply.

Stainless Steel ($22.95), Copper-Plated ($27.95), Gold-Plated ($29.95)

Cocktail Kingdom

 

Cocktail Kingdom is the world’s premier manufacturer and distributor of professional bar supplies, offering a wide spectrum of barware created to meet the exacting standards of professional bartenders. Products are designed to incorporate historical cues and contemporary knowledge to be practical and elegant, yet durable enough for daily use.

Cocktail Kingdom has dedicated itself to design and functionality, with the understanding that utility and practicality are the prime factors in professional barware. Find Cocktail Kingdom on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CocktailKingdom, or on Twitter via @CocktailKingdom

That`s such amazing and good news!! I for one have been wanting that Pearl Divers glass and Swizzle cup or years! I`m glad they are re-creating them! and that nifty skull bar spoon is a must as well :-)

Thank you Jeff Berry and Cocktail Kingdom now we can sip our Pearl Diver`s Punches and other drinks and Rum Swizzles in style! now go get it! I know I will….

 

Images courtesy of Jeff Berry and Cocktail Kingdom

Lapu Lapu Challenge 2015!

Aku Aku Lapu cocktail

So we`re moving into the fifth Challenge which is Lapu Lapu drinks! I really like that…

Look for the hashtag #lapulapuchallenge2015 on Instagram and make sure to follow @el_nova_1 for updates! make your own drink or order a Lapu Lapu in a tiki bar or bar and post up your picture to the #lapulapuchallenge2015 on Instagram! you might win a little something :-) and if you don`t you will have a lot of fun and good drinks, so it´s a win-win!

Lapu Lapus are some strong rum drinks and it is said that they bring magic and makes you “see things on the other side” – whatever that means…

Well I´m gonna find out! :-)

The term Lapu Lapu drinks comes from a legend that for some obscure reason happened to be the name sake of the drink Chief Lapu Lapu. The name is after the Filipino chief Lapu Lapu – who defeated Magellan in 1521 (you can read about the legend in Remixed)

Lapu Lapu Collage

And how that name so many years later was used to name rum drinks served in the polynesian restaurants during the great tiki era is one more of those mysterious things that belongs to the rum soaked tiki drink world..

There´s also a Disney version of a Lapu Lapu served at the Polynesian resort in a hollowed out pineapple (like the Boo Loo) containing rums, orange juice and sour mix.

The Lapu Lapu drinks mentioned in Jeff Beachbum Berry`s Remixed are the Chief Lapu Lapu, Aku Aku Lapu and the lesser known Kikuya Lapu (all are on page 61-63 in Remixed)

These three are all different incarnations of the same drink and it´s a drink large enough to serve two people but of course they can be enjoyed by one, it´s just a lot of rum!

I can´t say which one of these i like the most, they are all tasty and the Aku AKu Lapu packs a serious punch. The one here is the one I made for the challenge:

Aku Aku Lapu

Aku Aku Lapu cocktail 2

1 oz lemon juice
1 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
1 oz grapefruit juice
1 oz orange juice
1 oz Falernum
1 oz gold rum (I used Lost Spirits 151 Cuban)
1 oz dark Jamaican rum (I used Blackwell)
1 oz Lemon Hart 151 Demerara rum or Hamilton 151 – I`m out of Lemon Hart and have no Hamilton 151 so I used Our Rums and Spirits 24 Year Demerara which is very woody and strong
16 oz crushed ice

Blend at high speed for about 20 seconds. Pour into large snifter or bowl and add more ice to fill. Traditional garnish is a gardenia, but I also added a thick orange peel and some fresh mint.

This one is from the Aku Aku restaurant in Las Vegas cirka 1960. In Intoxica it says the Aku Aku once fronted the Stardust hotel along with two massive moais or Easter Island (Rapa Nui) statues. The phrase Te pito o te henua has been said to be the original name of the island.

Aku Aku was the book title of Thor Heyedahl´s bestseller – an author i have enjoyed over the years. His theory on how those giant moais were moved gave name to the word aku aku:

Aku Aku – To move a tall, flat bottomed object (such as a bookshelf) by swiveling it alternatively on its corners in a “walking” fashion. [After the book by Thor Heyerdahl theorising the statues of Easter Island were moved in this fashion.] source: LangMaker.com. Aku Aku also has another meaning to the islanders: a spiritual guide.

Chief Lapu Lapu

Chief Lapu Lapu 2

3 oz orange juice
2 oz fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1 oz sugar syrup
1 oz passion fruit syrup
1 1/2 oz dark Jamaican rum
1 1/2 oz light Puerto Rican (or Virgin Islands) rum

Shake well with ice cubes in a large shaker and pour into a large snifter. Add more ice to fill.

Chief Lapu Lapu 6

A Pineapple Bowl is carried by two Tikis….

Chief Lapu Lapu 1

….guarding the….

Chief Lapu Lapu 4

CHIEF LAPU LAPU!!

(In a gorgeous pineapple tiki mug by Scott Taylor, @tikipop on Instagram)

I find this one to be as tasty as the Aku Aku Lapu even though it`s not as strong….but there´s always room for a float if you wish….

Here`s another one, the Royal Hawaiian Lapu Lapu, the picture is from an old post. This recipe dates back to cirka the 40’s and 50’s from the former Royal Hawaiian and like many old tiki bars the Royal Hawaiian Lapu Lapu is a well guarded secret and this recipe I found on Tiki Central, not sure how authentic it is but it seems to be the closest you can possibly get unless it actually is the real original recipe.

Royal Hawaiian Lapu Lapu

Half fill a brandy snifter of shaved ice, or if you can`t make that, use a crushed ice as finely crushed as possible but it won`t be the same.

A tsp each of simple syrup orgeat and passionfruit syrup

2 oz of light rum.

A mixture of 60% pineapple juice and 40% orange juice, which should fill up the glass almost all the way to the top. Leave just enough room for the floater, at least 2 oz.

A floater of really dark rum, like Whalers.

Not part of the recipe but I also added 0.5 oz of fresh lime juice to it because I like the freshness you get from freshly squeezed lime.

Enjoy the Lapu Lapus!

Don`t forget to follow @el_nova_1 on Instagram!

Kōloa Rum Company Expands Partnership

Koloa rums

Kōloa Rum Expands Partnership with Young’s Market Company as Exclusive Distributor in Hawai`i and Ten U.S. Markets

Kalaheo, Kaua`i, Hawai`i (May 6, 2015) – Kōloa Rum Company today announced that the company’s full portfolio of artisanal, single-batch Hawaiian rum will be distributed by Young’s Market Company throughout the Hawaiian Islands beginning May 11, 2015. Kōloa Rum Company’s partnership with Young’s Market Company in Hawai`i is the next phase in an expanded agreement naming Young’s as the brand’s exclusive distributor in ten U.S. markets.

Currently, Young’s distributes Kōloa Rum products in California and Arizona. Within the next few months, Young’s will launch the authentic Hawaiian rum in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Utah, and Wyoming.
Kōloa Rum Company’s expanded agreement with Young’s Market Company includes representation of the full Kōloa

Rum portfolio, including Kaua`i White, Gold, Dark, Spice and Coconut Rum and Kōloa Ready-to-Drink Mai Tai and Rum Punch cocktails.

Bob Gunter, President and CEO, Kōloa Rum Company, said: “Young’s Market Company is an outstanding company that has consistently delivered exceptional value and service to Kōloa Rum in California and Arizona over the past several years. Expanding our partnership with Young’s in Hawai`i and throughout their 10-state distribution footprint is a natural evolution in the ongoing growth and development of our brand. Our partnership with Young’s personifies the high degree of trust and confidence that we have in the leadership and capabilities of this dynamic organization.”

Regarding the expanded distribution partnership, Rick Gillis, President, Young’s Market Company, said: “Young’s Market Company is proud to distribute Kōloa Rum to the brand’s home state of Hawai`i and we are excited to expand the geography of our partnership to ten U.S. markets.”

Philana Bouvier, EVP General Manager, Young’s Market Company, Hawai`i, added: “The Kōloa Rum brand is an award-winning premium local rum that visitors from all over the world recognize and love. Young’s Market Company is well-positioned to take this brand to the next level for all channels of distribution. We are excited that Kōloa Rum Company has extended its distribution agreement with Young’s across ten western U.S. states.”

About Kōloa Rum Company
Kōloa Rum Company produces artisanal, single-batch Hawaiian Rum and ready-to-drink cocktails at its distillery in Kalaheo, Kaua`i and operates Kaua`i’s first and only distilled spirits Tasting Room & Company Store on the grounds of Kilohana Plantation, near Lihue. The Company’s multiple award-winning portfolio includes its premium Kaua`i White, Gold, Dark, Spice and Coconut Rum in 750ml and 50ml bottles and Kōloa Ready-to-Drink Mai Tai and Rum Punch cocktails.

For more information about Kōloa Rum Company, please visit www.koloarum.com

About Young’s Market Company
Founded in 1888, Young’s Market Company is the premier distributor of fine wines, spirits and selected beverages in the western United States. With operations in Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming, we are proud to represent industry-leading brands and supplier partners.

Our best-in-class team of wine and spirits professionals represent a collection of unique life experiences, world views, and ideas all focused on our core values; Integrity, Family, Quality, and an Entrepreneurial Spirit. We are committed to adding value to our customers, providing exemplary professional representation of our suppliers, reaching the highest standards of respect for our employees, and supporting the communities we serve.

Media Contact:
Jeanne Toulon, Kōloa Rum Company, Director of Business & Public Relations
jeanne@koloarum.com, 808-639-7624

Koloa rums 2

Rum Barrel Challenge 2015

Rum Barrel Challenge logo

It`s time to bring out the rum barrel mugs (or other fancy glasses) as the third tiki drink challenge is taking place on Instagram and this time it´s a Rum Barrel Challenge! Very shortly after it was announced by el_nova_1 on the thursday, the drink pictures started to come in….

And there`s recipes to chose from, for example in Jeff Berry`s Total Tiki App there`s four different varietes. I once said that the Rum Barrel is a cool tiki drink….because there´s something very relaxing and rewarding in having a BIG rum barrel mug filled with goodness to sip…like a giant pacifier for grownups! :-)

In the golden tiki era most Polynesian restaurants had their own version of the Rum Barrel and this is a drink you can play a lot with, switching out rums and stuff, making new varietes and that`s what I`m gonna do now.

Jamaican Barrel `O Rum

Jamaican Barrel O Rum 12

1 oz fresh lime
1 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
1 oz fresh orange juice
0.25 oz sugarcane syrup
0.25 oz Pimento dram
0.5 oz Smith & Cross
0.5 oz Rum Nation Jamaica 8 Year
1 oz Blackwell Rum
0.5 oz Coruba overproof
Dash Angostura

Shake all ingredients with ice, strain and pour into a rum barrel mug with fresh ice cubes and garnish with plenty of mint and a bright tropical flower.

Next one up is coming full with luscuous rums and lots of Aloha! based on Don the Beachcomber´s 1940s recipe but with other rums….

Donn Beach Rum Barrel Recipe 1940s

Recipe pics from Jeff Berry`s Tiki App! get it here.

Aloha Barrel

Recipe as in the pics above but with 1 oz Koloa Coconut Rum, 1 oz Koloa Dark, float Koloa spiced and Rougaroux Blackstrap (or/and Cruzan)

Aloha Barrel

The last one to round up this Rum Barrel Challenge is complete with fire and two excellent overproof rums….one has a lot of pineapple flavor notes and is quite fruity and very deceiving with it´s smoothness….the other one is a intense smoke bomb…a really wild rum….it tastes like a “smoky JWray” and they balance each others flavor notes perfectly.

But they will not be alone in the barrel of course, we need one more rum and for that I picked the Rhum JM agricole blanc. So here we got fruity and smoky paired with grassy and herbal finished with a dash each of BoyDrinksWorld`s awesome Serrano Cocktail Spice and Passionfruit bitters and that makes for a quite different kind of Rum Barrel cocktail.

Sort of lighter, livelier and fresher but still deceivingly strong.

Flaming Rhum Barrel 

Flaming Rhum Barrel  2

1 oz fresh lime
1 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
1 oz fresh grapefruit juice
0.75 oz sugarcane syrup
1 oz Rhum JM agricole blanc
1.5 oz Rivers Royal Grenadian Rum (138 proof)
0.5 oz Lost Spirits 151 Cuban Inspired Rum
A dash (or two) each of Boy Drinks World Serrano Cocktail Spice and Passionfruit bitters

Shake it all with ice cubes and pour into a barrel mug or other tiki mug, fill up with fresh ice and garnish with mint and orchids on the side. For the flames, use two spent lime shells and place a crouton on each that is drenched in either a 151 proof rum or lemon extract and set alight.

Flaming Rhum Barrel collage

So head over to Instagram and take a look at all the amazing Rum Barrel drinks! Hashtag #rumbarrelchallenge2015 and don`t forget to follow el_nova_1 the creator of this event.

Jet Pilot Challenge 2015!

Jet Pilot Challenge

Last weekend was the Fogcutter Challenge…..and this weekend we continued the boozy activity with the Jet Pilot Challenge! you were supposed to make a Jet Pilot or a variation of it and post up the picture on Instagram with the hashtag #jetpilotchallenge2015 and best picture wins a prize! you don`t even must make a drink yourself you can take a picture of a Jet Pilot in a bar too.

Follow @el_nova_1 on Instagram for updates and check the #jetpilotchallenge2015 for more boozylicious pics! there will most likely be more Jet Pilots posted there as I write and post this as well as the next challenge coming up being announced.

The Jet Pilot was one of the most copied drinks during the hey days of the tiki era, and the drink had many names – the drink was known as the Ace Pilot, Space Pilot and Astronaut…and at the Mai-Kai, it became the Jet Pilot created by Mai-Kai’s original mixologist, Mariano Licudine who before coming to Mai Kai to design their original tropical drink menu, worked for Donn Beach who btw was a decorated World War II veteran.

The Jet Pilot is a strong, spicy, rummy and intense drink which dates back to the Mai-Kai’s original 1956 menu and is based on Don the Beachcomber’s Test Pilot cirka 1941.

Jet Pilot Recipe

 

Jet Pilot Recipe SC

And Stephen Crane`s Jet Pilot from Jeff Berry`s “a must have…” – Total Tiki App!

And like I did in my last post about the Fogcutter Challenge, i`m posting up a few of the pics that were submitted, and let me tell you I had a lot of fun with this! not only do you get to imbibe some superlicious tiki drinks, you also learn something about each drink since you (hopefully) make a couple of different ones and so by doing that you try different rum combos and recipe tweaks and learn a lot about how flavors comes together.

It takes a lot of practise to get the tiki drinks right and things like this, different tiki drink challenges inspires you too experiment and learn….it`s fun and educational.

Also by looking at pictures and reading recipes of tiki drinks you learn something about what a tiki drink is and how it looks like, that for example, it´s not about adding as many ingredients as possible in a big mess where all the various flavors clash with each other or melt together into an undefined mess instead of being harmoniously layered…..

Tiki drinks are tropical and the roots of tiki drinks are in the Caribbean….that`s where most of the rums came from and some of the mixers, like the falernum and pimento dram, even though a lot of the tiki inspiration came from the South Seas.

So let`s get tropical….!

Jet Pilot El Nova coll

Jet Pilot coll 0

Jet Pilot coll 1

Jet Pilot coll 2

Jet Pilot coll 3

Jet Pilot coll 5

JETPILOT COLLAGE 1

JET PILOT COLLAGE 2

And the last one that came in…sent in from Mai Kai, what a beauty! I just love how drink pics coming in from all over the places….Tacoma Cabana, Lost Lake, Ventiki, Bootlegger LoungeLatitude 29, Tiki Ti, Frankie`s Tiki OasisMai Kai…and all private homes and home tiki bars!

Jet Pilot challenge Mai Kai

And here are my three versions, they are all made from the same recipe the Stephen Crane version but they just contain different rum combos starting out the Jet Pilot night with a double drink in a huge goblet because I was thirsty….

Lost Pilot

Lost Pilot – made with Lost Spirits 151 Cuban Inspired and Polynesian Rums and Rum Nation Jamaica 8 year plus Wood`s 100 for the demerara flavor. Both the Lost Spirits and Wood`s are strong rums while the Rum Nation Jamaica 8 mellows the strong flavors out and keep them balanced adding “sweetness” to the drink, but not sweetness as in sugar sweetness….more like making it nice.

The next up were two drinks, yes both for me… :-) and I called them the Co-Pilots…they had slightly different rum combos in them. I decided to make two drinks (and yeah…after imbibing a strong double, don`t judge…) because I have these two ubercool pair (called The Royal Pair) of tiki mugs made by Wayne Hoareau, owner of Wild Thing Creations in Australia, maker of awesome tiki mugs and I wanted to feature this sweet pair together.

One has Rum Nation 8 and Coruba overproof, touch of Wood`s 100 demerara and then Rhum Barbancourt and that rum combo was nice, kinda mellow and not as strong as the double and maybe that was a good thing? because….

– The next had a strong wicked rum combo full of flavors, mostly in the blackstrap route….yes I´m there again…It had Blackwell Jamaican Rum, Rougaroux Fullmoon dark, Wood`s 100 and Cruzan Blackstrap float – and a generous one, like not measured, just poured….

CoPilots 2

The Co-Pilots!

The last drink I made was….the PINEAPPLE Pilot!! flying pineapples all around!! with the cooolest pineapple Tiki mug on the planet!! made by Scott Taylor!! the pineapple was brimming full with Blackwell Rum, Lost Spirits 151 Cuban rum and Gunroom Navy Rum!

Tasty rum combo as well, the Blackwell rum and the GunRoom navy rum paired well together and the strength and slight fruity pineapple notes came from the ever so smooth but oh so deadly Lost Spirits 151 Cuban….

Pineapple Pilot 2

The Pineapple Pilot

So why not join in on the fun next weekend or whenever the next tiki drink challenge happens? head over to Instagram and follow @el_nova_1

The Fogcutter Challenge 2015!

FOGCUTTERCHALLENGE LOGO

This weekend there has been a Fogcutter challenge on Instagram where you could participate by making Fogcutters and variations of it and it was not a recipe contest even though the drinks should be based on the original recipes with great variations allowed….but one didn´t even necessarily have to make a drink either, it could be a drink from a bar as well, but it was a picture contest! and there is a prize!

And just to have fun and get an excuse (if such thing is needed….?) to drink some rummy tiki drinks :-) 106 posts were made…

The whole thing was invented by El Nova last weekend when it was the Navy Grog Challenge, it was created because Jason Alexander (Tacoma Cabana – they actually serve no less than 7 different Mai Tai variations!) had an awesome Navy Grog recipe and El Nova thought it would be fun to make a Navy Grog challenge and post it up on Instagram to see how people display their drinks.

Then he asked Jason and a few other people to help promote it on Instagram. And then I found out from seeing a blog post on the Navy Grog Challenge made by Oriol over at Three of Strong and decided to join in to the fun!

Navy Grog

My Navy Grog made with Jeff Berry`s Navy Grog Cone Kit which can be purchased at Cocktail Kingdom!

Now I came in too late for the Navy Grog even though I even posted up a pic of one of my Navy Grogs, and so then I decided to jump into the Fogcutter Challenge.

There were a lot different takes on this classic tiki cocktail, with everything from an Oyster Cutter garnished with a real oyster (!) to Jason Alexander`s triple flaming Scullcutter to a fantastic looking Cobra cutter in a black tiki mug made by Rob Hawes (Maui Tiki Tours ) containing Lost Spirits Polynesian rum, Oriol`s (ThreeofStrong) awesome looking Fogrummer to a Frankencutter and the classic New Orleans Bali Hai Foggcutter.

There was no shortage of imagination!

Fogcutter recipe collage 3

Pics of recipes taken from Jeff Berry`s Total Tiki App, courtesy Jeff Berry! you can purchase the app (Iphone and Ipad) in the Appstore! to me, it´s a must-have, I use it all the time, so handy…..The Total Tiki is a unique recipe database of almost 250 great exotic drinks and Tiki cocktails. read more about it on Jeff`s own blog.

They really got me into a Fogcutter experimenting mode….so I made four different varietes, all in a rummy style because I was in a rum-mood….isn`t it fun how booze nerds can come together online and do something like this? it reminds me of the old Thursday Drink Nights, the so called TDNs which we did back in around 2008-09, the best drink and photo wins a good prize….and along the way we have a lot of fun!

I don´t know what the prize is or who will win it because that is not yet revealed but I know one thing, this is all for the fun of it! and along the way you get a lot of inspiration and you get to imbibe a couple of nice tiki drinks too, so what`s there not to love?

 

Foggcutter recipe Bali Hai and Viking collage

Here`s a picture parade of a few of my screen shots of some of the drinks and further down are my own versions with recipes. I also post up pictures of the recipes on which all these drinks in the Fogcutter Challenge were based so you can make your own variations, it´s a really tasty drink I think, just one thing, the Fogcutter is pretty tart so if you like it a bit less tart, (I do) use a bit less of lemon or lime and up the orgeat a bit….

Here is a feast for the eyes! but there were many more than these…..you can find them if you use hashtag #fogcutterchallenge2015 on Instagram! there you will also see which Fogcutter picture will be the winner!

Arent they just lovely? these are a fantastic collection of Fogcutter variations!

Fogcutter Challenge 2015 collage 1

Fogcutter Challenge 2015 collage 2

Fogcutter Challenge 2015 collage 4

Fogcutter Challenge 2015 collage 3

Fogcuttercollage 5

Fogcutter Challenge 2015 Cobracutter collage

Fogcutter Challenge 2015 Bloodcutter collage

Fogcutter challenge 2015 Oyster cutter collage

Are y`all thirsty? …. I sure get thirsty by looking at these pics of amazing drinks and then finally also here are the ones i made, they differ from the original recipes in that they all contain only rums, yes I was in a total rum mode :-) they are based on the 1940s Fogcutter but the ratios of citrus and orgeat are a bit different.

And for some reason I decided to venture away from the traditional tall glass and use another….but I used Rob`s awesome tall woodgrain tiki mug for one of the drinks.

They are also quite similar both in taste and look, in that they are all variations on the same theme…with hm….quite similar rum selections as well, yeah that´s how it turned out! I think was in a blackstrap mode that night…and remember this was a night of experimentation….

Jungle Cutter #1

Jungle Cutter

1 oz fresh lime juice

1 oz fresh orange juice

0.75 oz orgeat

2-3 dashes Bitter Truth Havana Bitters (or Angostura)

2 oz Rhum Barbancourt 8

1 oz Rougaroux Fullmoon dark Rum

Float of Cruzan Blackstrap rum

Garnish anything tropical and exotic!

Shake with ice cubes and pour unstrained into a glass (tall or fancy) or tikimug! filled with some more fresh ice cubes.

Jungle Cutter #2 (almost identical to #1, the biggest difference is that #2 has a very generous float of Cruzan Blackstrap, which I think turned out tastier)

Jungle Cutter #2

1 oz fresh lime juice

2 oz fresh orange juice

0.5 oz orgeat

2 oz Rhum Barbancourt 8

1 oz Rougaroux Fullmoon dark Rum

0.5 oz Lost Spirits 151 Cuban

Generous decadent float of Cruzan Blackstrap rum

Garnish anything tropical and exotic!

Shake with ice cubes and pour unstrained into a glass (tall or fancy) or tikimug! filled with some more fresh ice cubes.

Yummy and rummy….

Rumcutter!

Rumcutter

1 oz fresh lime juice

1 oz fresh orange juice

0.5 oz orgeat

2 oz Doorly`s XO

1 oz old style smoky Barbados rum (i used the Confrérie du Rhum`s Barbados Cuvee #1, not available unf…the rum is made by the West Indies Distillery)

1 oz Rougaroux Fullmoon dark Rum

Float of Cruzan Blackstrap rum

Shake and donate to a tall tiki mug filled with fresh ice cubes, garnish mint and orchid. Tiki mug made by Rob Hawes (Maui Tiki Tours )

Blackstrap Cutter

Blackstrap Cutter

1 oz fresh lime juice

2 oz fresh orange juice

0.5 oz orgeat

1 oz Real McCoy 12 year old Rum

2 oz Rougaroux Fullmoon dark Rum

Generous float of Cruzan Blackstrap rum

Shake and donate to a tall tiki mug filled with fresh ice cubes, garnish with tropical leaf and orchids.

And that was it! the ones of the four I made which I liked the most are the Jungle Cutter #2 and the Blackstrap Cutter, I must love blackstrap rum…

Finally big mahalo to El Nova and Jason Alexander and the others who made the 2015 Fogcutter Challenge! y`all should follow and keep an eye on @el_nova_1 on Instagram because as long as people do it there will be more challenges coming up……

Rum and Tiki is fun!

2015 RumXP Tasting Competition Awards Announced!

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The RumXP International Rum Expert Tasting Panel convenes once a year to evaluate a wide range of cane spirits from all over the globe. RumXP judges are experienced evaluators of rum spirits from many countries, offering expert guidance in their selections of outstanding rum products.

Their web site is: RumXP.com

The RumXP International Rum Expert Tasting Panel is pleased to announce results of the 2015 RumXP International Tasting Competition held at the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival from April 14 to 16, 2015.

Twelve members of the International Rum Expert Panel and five guest judges participated in six tasting sessions of 14 categories with 127 of the finest rums from around the world presented for evaluation this year.

The RumXPs were sequestered in their tasting room for three days of blind tasting trials. The rums were grouped and judged in categories according to their style.

2015 RumXP judges include Dirk Becker of Germany, Javier Herrera of Spain, Leonardo Pinto of Italy, Bernhard Schäfer of Germany, Forrest Cokely of California, Tatu Kaarlas of Australia, “Bahama Bob” Leonard of Key West, Paul Senft of Georgia, Juan del Busto of Miami, John Gibbons of Sweden, Rene van Hoven of Holland and Ingvar Thomsen of Denmark.

Guest Judges include Marie King of California, Johnny Drejer of Denmark, Suzanne Long of California, Mark Theron of St. Kitts and Nevis, and Alexander Brittel of Miami.

2015 RumXP Best in Class and Gold Medal winners include:

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White Rum
Best in Class Gold: Skotlander White
Gold Awards went to: Blue Chair Bay White, Carta Vieja Silver, Brugal White Extra Dry

Premium White Rum
Best in Class Gold: Fwaygo White
Gold Awards went to: Plantation 3 Star, Nine Leaves Clear, Skotlander Rum III

Gold Rum
Best in Class Gold: Bacardi Gold
Gold Awards went to: Brugal Anejo, Ron Carta Vieja Gold, Don Barrilito 2 star

Aged Rum
Best in Class Gold: Plantation Original Dark
Gold Awards went to: Ron del Barrilito 3 star, Pusser’s British Navy, Bundaberg Small Batch 4

Premium Aged Rum
Best in Class Gold: Cartavio XO
Gold Awards went to: Plantation 20th Anniversary, Mezan XO, Brugal 1888

Aged Rum 5-8 Years
Best in Class Gold: Cartavio 5
Gold Awards went to: Plantation Barbados 5, Bacardi 8, Real McCoy 5

Aged Rum 12-15 years
Best in Class Gold: Pusser’s 15
Gold Awards went to: Yolo 10, Don Q Gran Anejo, Real McCoy 12

Aged Rum 18-25 years
Best in Class Gold: Opthimus 25
Gold Awards went to: Opthimus 21, Opthimus 18, Carta Vieja 18

Aged Rum – Special Cask
Best in Class Gold: Plantation Jamaica 2001
Gold Awards went to: Plantation Guyana 2005, Opthimus Malt Tomatin Whiskey Barrels 25 yr, Opthimus Oporto Barrels 25

Spiced Rum
Best in Class Gold: Siesta Key Spiced Limited Edition
Gold Awards went to: Siesta Key Distillers Reserve, Siesta Key Spiced, Blue Chair Bay Coconut Spiced, Bayou Spiced, Blue Water Caribbean Gold Premium Spiced

Flavored Rum
Best in Class Gold: Plantation Pineapple
Gold Awards went to: Bayou Satsuma, Blue Chair Bay Banana, Caray Cafe

Overproof Rum
Best in Class Gold: Plantation Overproof Original Dark
Gold Awards went to: Don Q 151, Lost Spirits Colonial American Inspired Rum, Wicked Dolphin Strawberry RumShine 100 Proof, Stroh 80

Rhum Agricole Blanc
Best in Class Gold: Trois Rivieres Rhum Blanc Agricole 55%
Gold Awards went to: — Trois Rivieres Cuvee Speciale 40%, Trois Rivieres Rhum Blanc Agricole 40%, Trois Rivieres Rhum Blanc Agricole 50%

Rhum Agricole Vieux
Best in Class Gold: Trois Rivieres Rhum Vieux VSOP
Gold Awards went to: Trois Rivieres Rhum Ambre 40%, La Mauny Rhum Vieux X.O. 40%, Trois Rivieres Rhum Vieux Martinique 12yr

Consumer Rum Jury

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For 2015, a new edition of the competition was introduced: The Consumer Rum Jury was comprised of 20 enthusiastic rum collectors and experienced consumers, offering the perspective of the active and engaged rum buyer in their evaluations.

Best in Class Gold: Ron Cartavio XO

ConsumerRumJuryGold

Gold Awards went to: Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva, Opthimus Ron Artesanal Solera 25 Anos, Siesta Key Distillers Reserve Solera Spiced Rum

Congrats to all winners!

Doorly`s XO – A Wonderful Classic Rum from Barbados!

Doorly`s XO bottle

Not new….but quite resently released in this country anyway – the wonderful Doorly`s XO….

Doorly`s XO is produced by R. L. Seale & Co. Ltd and distilled at the Four Square Distillery in Barbados which are located on the site of an old plantation dating back to the early 1600s and they are the makers of a whole range of famous rums such as RL Seale, Doorly`s, Rum Sixty Six, Old Brigand and John Taylor’s Velvet Falernum as well as creating rums for other brands for example Real McCoy and all the rums at St Nicholas Abbey except for their newest five year old expression.

Reginald Leon Seale (R.L.Seale) founded the company in 1926 and Master Distiller Richard Seale is a rum maker in the fourth generation. The Foursquare Rum Distillery in Barbados is wholly owned by the Seale family and is thus one of the few remaining independent producers in the Caribbean.

The Chairman of the company is Sir David Seale, while the whole site is now managed by his son, Mr.Richard Seale. Set in eight acres and beautifully landscaped, the distillery occupies the site of a former sugar factory that dates back to 1636.

RS

Richard Seale

Green Technology – Energy saving and environmental protection

Foursquare is interesting also because of how they use green technology which is used in their rum making in every single step, for example the carbon dioxide created during fermentation is captured and then sold to a local gas company and everything from the rum making process is taken care of in order to reduce the impact of the environment as much as possibly can be done.

For example, the Foursquare Rum Distillery has been designed not only to be highly energy efficient but environmentally friendly as well and stillages from distillation are reduced in volume by evaporation process up to one seventh of the initial volume.

Multiple effect evaporation is applied to reduce the steam consumption. Condensate recovered from evaporation is a transparent and clear liquid which may be recycled to the molasses dilution or disposed without any problem. Concentrated stillages at 55–60 % solids can then be reused as additive for fertilisers or animal feed.

More than 40 % of the carbondioxide given off during the fermenting process is captured and while other distilleries release this gas to the atmosphere,here it is cleaned, liquefied and stocked in bottles. The CO2 is then sold to soft drinks manufacturers to add fizz to their products.

That`s amazing! I`d love to go there and see the whole distillery and all their processes (not to mention tasting the rums) for myself and one day I hope will be able to do that.

How the rum is produced

Foursquare decanting cask

Not gonna go so deeply into fermentation and distillation processes because then this post would become a book….but here´s a short description on how the rum is produced at Foursquare Distillery:

As is worldwide known, the distillery produces many notable rums including ESA Field, Doorly’s, Old Brigand, Tommy Bahama and the Foursquare Spiced Rum. This rum has won medals at top Wine and Spirits competitions in the USA and Europe and has also been rated as the best-tasting flavoured rum in the world by the prestigious Beverage Tasting Institute Inc.of Chicago.

ESA Field and Old Brigand dominate the domestic market and the distillery submitted 12 different rums to the International Wine & Spirits competition in London in 2010 and returned with 12 medals including three Best in Class.

The Foursquare site itself has a long history in sugar, rum and molasses for over 350 years. To the north of the estate is the old‘ still house’, a building with a designation by the National Trust as a property of Historical and Architectural Interest. It is possibly the oldest building in Barbados we can safely identify as a home to rumproduction in the 17 th century.

Besides the distillery, which is housed in the renovated buildings of the old factory, the property has high historical, educational and architectural values: the sugar machinery museum, where you can see the open – air display of original machinery from the old sugar factory.

Then we have the restored 19 th century sugar factory furnace and the folk museum, where you can visit the fascinating showcase of the island’s heritage in a 17 th century plantation house; the distill house, the oldest building known on the island to produce rum in the past; the old time bottling plant and even a glass fusing studio, where you can see an Italian glass-blowing expert work in her studio. (!)

The distillery as it exists today was commissioned in 1996 by Green Engineering, which was chosen as main contractor of the process design and construction of the production facilities.The factory, R.L.Seale, rum blenders since 1909, at that time decided to stop the purchasing of rum from the other distilleries of the island and to produce themselves the spirit upon which their success as blenders was based.

The operation appeared quite difficult and the old distillers and blenders that would have judged the final product were of course quite sceptical about the new technologies introduced by Green Engineering.

Moreover,the spirit produced would have to be incorporated into the ’innersecrets’ of the established rum recipes without affecting the expectations of the consumers for whom the quality and the flavour, despite the new technologies, should have remained the same (or, better, improved). The goal of joining tradition and modern technology, old recipes and fine spirit quality was successfully achieved.

Foursquare stills collage

The copper pot still (on the left) and the continous stills.

Foursquare controls the entire production cycle: from the selection of the highest quality molasses to the fermentation and distillation,up to the final blending.For a very high quality rum production R.L.Seale has installed a fresh juice extraction line from cane molasses.

Total fermentation time at Foursquare is about 44 hours.This is slower than typical molasses fermentation and leads to better control.The yield is of more than 360 litres of pure alcohol per ton of molasses at 60% of fermentable sugar.
The yeast is imported from South Africa and was selected for the flavour profile of the rum that is produced.

Since fermentation is of critical importance to the realisation of a superior quality rum, R.L.Seale and Green Engineering have a continuous research programme to assure that the best thermo dynamic conditions and the best organic nutrients are used during this stage. In particular, since 2010 a new fully organic recipe has been developed for the yeast, following the idea that organic nutrients have an unmatchable assimilation grade if compared with standard chemical nutrients.

At Foursquare each of the rums is made using a blend of rums from both column and pot distillation methods. The pot still gives the rum greater complexity and depth of flavour.The column still allows the final blend to have a much better balanced aroma and taste.

From the still, the freshly distilled rum is moved to cask. Rum is traditionally matured in barrels from Kentucky made of American white oak that have been formerly used to mature bourbon.This is a synergistic relationship with the Kentucky distillers as Bourbon need new oak while rum is best matured in wood that has a degree of seasoning. Most rum from Foursquare is aged in this way.

However, some of the signature blends coming from the distillery have also been matured in sherry casks of Spanish oak, Madeira casks of American oak and Brandy casks of French oak. Due to the climate in the Caribbean, the rate of maturation is much faster than in Northern climates (tropical ageing) and rum, after five years, will have the same maturity as a spirit aged in Europe for about 10–12 years.

The warm climate in Barbados in particular is ideal for making rum–the humidity moderate and most importantly the temperature is very stable all year long.

Doorly`s XO

Doorly`s XO

The rum in my hands, Doorly`s XO (40% ABV) is a blend of rums that has been aged probably somewhere between 6-10 years (no age statement on the bottle) in American oak barrels and finished in Oloroso sherry casks.

On the label it says:

“From the house of Martin Doorly, has emerged a rum without equal. To produce the unique character of Doorly’s X.O., some of the oldest rums are carefully selected for a special second maturation.

The second maturation is carried out with the oak already seasoned in the aging of the Spanish Oloroso Sherry. The result is a delicate fusing of complex flavours giving rise to a rum of unparalleled excellence.”

The bottle has that old Caribbean feel to it and I like the label with the blue macaw parrot which gives it a tropical and colorful look, something i appreciate! but even though a nice presentation is important and a thing of pleasure and appeal it´s the content in the bottle that really matters…

And let me tell you – the content in this bottle is a joy to behold and imbibe…

Color and nose: The color of the rum is a lively rich amber and the nose is fruity with prunes, toffee, apricot, banana and orange peel. I get whiffs of tropical fruit…it`s a pleasant exquisite nose – I can sit and just smell this nose again and again. I didn`t take this time to do this before and I`m happy I did now.

In the mouth: Vibrant…..vibrant and fruity. Caramel and tropical fruit mingles together with hints of orange and apricot marmalade, dried dates, golden raisin and just a dust of wood…it´s balanced and refined, elegant with hints of spicy oakiness.

Final thoughts: You get a lot of very good rum for the money! it´s a great sipper but also a great mixer so it´s versatile, a great all-round rum of excellent quality. If you buy a bottle of this you won`t be sorry :-) and oh….it makes a very tasty classic Daiquiri and equally tasty Mai Tai!

But here´s another drink with it, something i mixed up with pineapple, coconut and spice in mind, threw in a little Coconaut, a dash of Painkiller, a hint of coffee and a squeeze of lime:

Coconaut Punch

Coconaut Punch

1.0 oz Coconut Cream
0.5 oz Lime Juice
1.0 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
Just a squeeze fresh orange juice
0.25 oz coffee liqueur
Dash angostura bitters
2.0 oz Doorly`s XO
Grated nutmeg and cinnamon on top

Shake with ice and strain into a tall glass filled with ice cubes and garnish with 2 orange wedges and a short cinnamon stick.

A mild slightly spicy summer tiki cocktail to enjoy in the sunset….everything i do isn`t overproof…. :-)

Next drink is also a tiki cocktail, it´s a twist of the “Tribute to The Mai-Kai’s Hidden Pearl” by The Atomic Grog.

Dark Pearl

Dark Pearl

0.5 oz fresh lime juice
0.5 oz passion fruit syrup (lilikoi)
1.0 oz guava juice
0.5 oz rich honey-mix (2:1 ratio of honey and water, mixed and chilled)
2 oz Doorly`s XO
3-4 dashes angostura bitters

Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a fancy glass and garnish with tropical orchids and mint. Dash the angostura bitters on top.

 

Foursquare small logo

A Whole Range of Rums at the Upcoming Miami Rumfest!

Miami Rumfest 2015

If you are planning to attend the Miami Rum Renaissance/Rumfest on april 17-19 you are in for a real rum TREAT! There are a lot of great news for this year. Here is a list of rums that will be debuting at the show. Many will be in the US for the FIRST TIME. Others have expressions available, but these are NEW to the brand and will debut at Miami Rum Festival.

AfroHead 7
AfroHead XO
Amrut White
Amrut Two Indies
Amrut Two Indies Old Port
Bayou Satsuma Rum Liquor
Bayou Select Barrel Reserve
Blue Chair Bay Banana
Blue Chair Bay Vanilla
Blue Water Ultra Premium
Blue Water Caribbean Gold
Borgoe 8
Bristol Barbados 2004
Bristol Black Spiced
Bristol Port Morant Demerara 1999
Bristol Reserve Rum of Haiti 2004
Bristol Trinidad Caroni 1996
Caray Reserva Del Artesano
Caray Platinum
Citrus Spice
Citrus Chocolate
Club Caribe Silver
Don Papa 10
DonQ 151
Duran
Fwaygo
Lost Spirits Prometheus
Mezan Jamaica 2000
Mezan Jamaica XO
Mezan Panama 2004
Monymusk Special Reserve
Mutineers Gold XO Special Reserve
Nine Leaves Clear
Nine Leaves Half American Oak Cask
Nine Leaves Half French Oak Cask
Opthimus 25
Opthimus Artesanal 25
Opthimus Artesanal 21
Opthimus Artesanal 18
Opthimus Artesanal 15
Opthimus Malt Whiskey 25
Opthimus OportO 25
Plantation Pineapple Stiggins Fancy
Pusser’s Gunpowder Proof
Pusser’s Spiced
Richland Single Estate Artesan Georgia
Siesta Key Distiller’s Reserve
Siesta Key Toasted Coconut
Siesta Key Spiced Beer Barrel Finish
Skotlander Rum III (Sea Buckthorn)
Skotlander Rum IV (Liquorice)
Skotlander Cask
Skotlander White
St. Nicolas Abbey 10
Stroh 160 Spiced
Travellers 5 Barrel
Westerhall Estate 10 XO
Wicked Dolphin Coconut
Wicked Dolphin Crystal
Wicked Dolphin Florida Spiced
Wicked Dolphin Strawberry RumShine
Yolo Gold 10
Yolo Silver

Read all the details about the Rum Renaissance Festival here