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

Rhum Arrangè de Cèd

Ced bottle

Rhum Arrangè Zwazo

zwazo label for blog

El Dorado the Liquid Gold…

el-dorado-15

Demerara Rums from Guyana

demerara-private-bottlings1

Demerara Rums Part One

dem-rums-port-royal

Demerara Rums Part Two

demerara-part-2

Cachaca and Rhum agricole, what`s the difference?

cachaca-and-rhum-agricole

Havana Club

havana-club-2

Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced Rum

ono-cajun-spiced-rum

St Nicholas Abbey 12 yo

Plantation 3 Stars White Rum

Blackwell Rum

Denizen Rum

Plantation Original Dark Overproof

Tiki Lovers Rum

Tahitian Vanilla Syrup

vanilla-syrup

Hibiscus Grenadine

hibiscus-grenadine-jar

Sugarcane!

sugarcane

Gomme syrup

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

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View my Cocktails on flickr p1

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View my Cocktails on flickr p3

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TOTC 2014 – Which Rum, What Cocktail and Why? and Floridita – Cradle of the Daiquiri

Plantation rum samples 2

Picture Laura Godel

Which Rum, What Cocktail and Why?

This seminar was presented by Plantation Rum and held by Jeff Berry, Alexandre Gabriel, Martin Cate and Philip Duff and the room was packed and of course all the usual suspects were there :-)

They took us through the history of rum, the tiki era, Don the Beachcomber, Trader Vic… and then a very interesting theory about the rums Trader Vic used in his Mai Tais, or rather the Martinique rum part. Most of us (if not all ?) have always thought that the Martinique rum Trader Vic used was an agricole rum, but there is a new theory on this that the rum actually was a molasses based rum and not an agricole.

How’s that and why?

Well, there seem to be some things that points to that, for example the Martinique rum was described at the time as a rum with a “heavy coffee color”, here is the points according to Martin Cate including a pic of the jet-black Barum bottled in Jamaica:

1. Very few agricoles were exported to the US at that time. Only brand I can see in the US is Saint James. Don Beach had no agricoles at all on his 1940s rum menu. Don describes Martinique rum as “Heavy-bodied, medium pungency” and “Not as dry as the Cuban nor as rummy as the Jamaican” – no word about grassiness or a different raw material at all.

2. His first Adjusted Mai Tai recipe uses Coruba- lightly aged black Jamaican rum. Heavier bodied, but no depth of character.

3. He described using Trader Vic’s brand Martinique rum in the 1950 to match the desired “nutty” flavor of the older Jamaican.

4. Trader Vic’s 1946 Book of Food and Drink (and 1947 and 172 Bartenders Guide) describe Martinique rum as “Commonly known as French rums, they are usually heavy in body, coffee-colored, very similar to Jamaica rums, but in many cases have the dry burned flavor of the Demerara.”

There’s just no way that’s agricole. Also, Vic cited and used Negrita- a black rum from the French islands that is molasses based.

Vic’s Martinique Rum List: Outstanding brands: Bellows Martinique* Black Head* Rhum St. James Barum* Casa Grazia (?) Gosling’s Martinique* Rhum Charleston* Rhum Chauvet* Rhum Risetta* Rhum Negrita*

*All Traditionelle

Then: Creation of Vic’s Brand Mai Tai Rum – 1960s:

“This rum was made to recapture the characteristics of the original 17-year-old rum. First he skillfully blended Jamaican rums and then added Martinique rum for its elusive and wonderful nutlike flavor (ed – that’s got to be rhum traditionelle) and a bit of light Virgin Island rum for the smoothness of body. (ed. – that’s just padding to keep the cost down) This combination became the Trader Vic Mai Tai rum as we know it today.” (“Today” being the 1960s)

BARUM

Picture courtesy Martin Cate

So to me it looks like it’s true that the Martinique rum was actually molasses based. The rum world is really interesting stuff…Sure I wrote a note about this when I reviewed the Denizen Merchant’s Reserve rum which is a blend with both Jamaican rums and molasses based Martinique rum (Grand Arome) but being at this seminar and Martin Cate helped me get more and deeper understanding of the details.

Martin Cate is still of the opinion though, that making a Mai Tai with half Jamaican and half Agricole is delicious regardless! I tend to agree…

Next up, more about rum….yeah I have a hard time staying away from any seminar talking about my favorite cane spirit….

FLORIDITA – The cradle of the Daiquiri

Floridita seminar Jeff and David

Picture Laura Godel

This years Tales did not disappoint, I think it was even better than last year. One of the seminars I went to was “The Floridita: cradle of the Daiquiri” held by Jeff “Beachbum” Berry and David Wondrich and presented by Bacardi Rum. The seminar took us back to the 1930′s Havana and head bartender Constantino Ribalaigua Vert who even taught Trader Vic how to make tropical drinks! (Trader Vic also went to New Orleans to learn how to mix drinks – after all Nola is the birthplace of the cocktail…)

The recipe for the classic daiquiri was 2 oz white rum, juice of 1/2 hand-squeezed lime, 1 tsp sugar and the drink was mostly stirred but sometimes shaken – “thrown Cuban style” that is. The limes used were the large limes most of us are used to, not the smaller key limes and they were squeezed by hand.

Hemingway who moved to Havana and there discovered the Floridita asked his daiquiri to be changed – double the rum, eliminate the sugar (he had diabetes) and adding grapefruit juice and maraschino and the Papa Double was invented, also called the Hemingway daiquiri.

His record of Papa Double consumption was 17 drinks from the morning to the evening – he really loved his daiquiri! But he didn’t drink just daiquiris, he also used to drink for example, a cocktail called “Ideal” while reading his daily paper. The Ideal was 1 oz Italian vermouth, 1 oz French vermouth, 1 oz dry gin, 3/4 oz grapefruit juice and a tsp maraschino.

Floridita daiquiris 123

One of Constantinos trademarks was the combination of grapefruit and maraschino and he used a lot of fresh mint, sugar instead of syrup, dashes of curacao and lime peel – as ingredient. He became known for consistency and a generally high quality on his cocktails.

Constantino also had an “ice program” where different styles of ice were grouped into four: 1 – Menudo (cracked) 2 – Menudito (chpped) 3 – Afeitado (shaved) 4 – Frappe’ (snow) and when the daiquiri was made simple syrup wasn’t used because syrup adds a different texture and taste and instead the sugar was stirred into the juices. So you can see with what great care he took the attention to details in his drink mixing.

FLORIDITA DRINK

And from Hemingway Floridita got fame, fortune and became one of Esquire’s top seven bars in the world at the time.

Now, Trader Vic, who sat at the bar Floridita to study how tropical drinks were mixed took Constantino’s daiquiri recipe with him when he left and put it on his menu and called it “Trader Vic’s Daiquiri’………and his book the 1940′ s Bar Guide was the result of his studying in the Floridita and Constantino’s work.

The seminar taught us about the history of Floridita and the history of the daiquiri but there were more things than that mentioned, among them Don Beach, Trader Vic and of course, the Mai Tai, how can you not hear something about the Mai Tai when Jeff Berry is one of the panelists?

FLORIDITA SEMINAR JEFF BERRY

And to wrap it all up – I would recommend anyone to go to the Tales! it’s such an experience, it’s fun, you meet fun and interesting people and you learn a lot!

Next post coming up soon – the tastings!

TOTC 2014 – Winners of the Spirited Awards!

TOTC Spirited Awards Logo

This years Tales of the Cocktail has been a blast and on the Saturday the 2014 Spirited Awards Winners were announced:

TALES OF THE COCKTAIL 2014 SPIRITED AWARDS

Best New International Cocktail Bar: White Lyan
Best New American Cocktail Bar: Three Dots And A Dash (Chicago)
Best International Bar Team: Artesian (London)
Best American Bar Team: Trick Dog (San Francisco)
Best International Hotel Bar: Artesian (London)
Best International Hotel Bar: Clyde Common (Portland)
Best American Brand Ambassador: Neyah White (Suntory Whiskies)
Best International Brand Ambassador: Giuseppe Gallo (Martini)
Best International Restaurant Bar: The Bon Vivant (Edinburgh)
Best American Restaurant Bar: The NoMad (New York)
Best American High Volume Bar: Polite Provisions
Best International High Volume Bar: Schuman’s Bar (Munich)
Best New Product: Del Maguey Iberico Mezcal
World’s Best Cocktail Menu: The Aviary (Chicago)
World’s Best Drinks Selection: The Dead Rabbit NYC
American Bartender of the Year: Shaun Kenyon (Denver)
International Bartender of the Year: Simone Caporale (Artesian, London)
Best Bar Mentor of the Year: Dushan Zaric
Best International Cocktail Bar: 28Hong Kong Street (Singepore)
Best Cocktail & Spirits Publication: Imbibe Magazine (USA).
Best new Best Cocktail & Spirits Writer: Paul Clarke
Best new Bartending Book: Beachbum Berry Potions of the Caribbean.
World’s Best Bar: Artesian (London)

Congrats to all the winners!!

Rum Nation CARONI 1998

Rum Nation Caroni 98

Not too long ago i wrote about the excellent Jamaica Pot Still Limited Edition rum from Rum Nation which i`m very impressed with and now they are launching their next rum which is none other than a Caroni….

I hold the Caroni rums and especially the heavy types very dear to heart because they are so incredibly GOOD! and i`m so sorry about the fact that the old Caroni distillery is no more making these fabulous rums and unfortunately one day they will be nothing but a sweet memory.

But luckily we are not yet there….and so there is still time to enjoy them and they really are true treasures to sip and savor both neat and in cocktails.

The Rum Nation Caroni is 16 years old have been aged both in the tropics, thus imparting the thickness the angels share produce…(the tropical conditions causes a 60% loss of the distilled spirit due to evaporation) and then aged further in Europe in American Oak casks that contained bourbon then rum Peruano 8yo.

It`s distilled in 1998 and bottled this year, in 2014. The sugar content is only 5 g/l and the alcohol proof is 110 or 55%

The result is an intense dark rum with notes of wood, cloves, cola, coffee and aromatic herbs.

The bottle is a beauty to behold…and the label a work of art - it has the characteristic stamp on it – the stamp on the bottle is due to Fabio Rosso being an avid stamp collector in younger years and now adding a touch of class to the bottles with the stamps and a nod to the country of origin – which i find lovely.

Rum Nation Caroni 98 3

The Caroni Sugar Factory

There were originally more than 50 different rums brands produced in Trinidad – by 1950 it was only 8 and today only Angostura is left. Caroni was established in 1918 on the site of the old Caroni Sugar factory and operated until 1993.

The Caroni sugar factory started to operate a cast iron still in 1918 and at that time there were some eight or ten other sugar factories operating, each producing different types of rums and these rums were bought up by merchants and sold to rum shops all over the island. There were all kinds of “blends” and concoctions being made by both the merchants and the rum shop owners and sold over the counter as “petit quarts”

Eventually Caroni increased the quality of the distilling process and went from the original cast iron still to use a wooden coffey still – until 1945 when they got a copper still which was followed by a single column in 1957 and then a four column Gerb Herman still in 1980.

They produced a number of products like Superb White Magic Rum, Creole Punch Rum, Special Old Cask Rum, Felicité Gold Rum, Caroni Puncheon Rum and Caroni Bay Rum.

For nearly 100 years Caroni has had large sugar estates on the island and was the major producer of molasses. Sadly now since it`s closed no more of their magnificient rums are produced and when it´s gone it´s gone.

And that is sad because the Caroni rums are unique. That said i must confess i haven`t yet tried many but the ones i`ve tried have all been outstanding and original in the same way as the demerara rums are.

And i must say the flavor of the so called heavy Caronis DOES remind me quite a bit of a demerara rum, it has the same full bodied character but without the demerara flavor – but there`s something similar…it has the same type of character despite of being a totally different rum.

My taste notes:

Nose – In the nose i feel wood, orange peel, sugarcane and tropical fruits.

Mouth – It`s smooth with hints of wood, kola and toffee, aromatic spice and tropical fruits.

A few drops of water mellows it out and brings out more fruitiness and i get the flavor of apricot. I like the fruitness in it and it´s not too sweet either with a sugar content of 5 g/l.

Cocktails…

I tried it in a daiquiri and as expected it made a great daiquiri and what i call a “Caroni daiquiri” with it´s distinct flavor from the Caroni rum.

But i have had so many daiquiris posted on this blog that i lost count, so i opted for something else and here`s my take of a really nice cocktail called Creole Fix which i found on Pinterest and which led me to this post (this awesome cocktail was created by Ania Robbins for Texas Tiki Week)

Creole Fix

Rum Nation Creole Fix 2

2.0 oz Rum Nation Caroni-98

0.75 oz fresh orange juice

0.75 oz lemon/lime juice

0.5 oz rich cinnamon syrup

A couple good dashes of Bitter Truth creole bitters (or Peychaud`s) on top of the ice gives the drink both a pretty color and a layer of spicy “creole-bitters/peychaudish” flavor that you`ll feel the taste of by the end of drinking.

Speared cinnamon powdered orange slice and maraschino cherry for garnish!

Shake and pour into tall glass filled with crushed ice.

This is a refreshing fruity-rummy drink and it got a wonderful aroma from the cinnamon powdered orange slice…it`s rummy, fruity, a little spicy and the Caroni rum flavor does shine through.

Rum Nation Creole Fix 3

My conclusion:

The Rum Nation Caroni-98 is a excellent sipping rum and also equally good for various cocktails thus making it a versatile rum fit for a king or queen:-)

If there´s anything i could think of that could make it even better would be a bit higher proof, like 61% to give it some more punch – but in that case, not really for sipping – more for say…tiki drinks :-) – but at 55% it´s good for everyone. And besides, nothing stops a tiki drink maker from adding a overproof float if you wish…i think we are quite notorious for that…

If this rum was on the shelves here i`d definitely buy it as a staple for my homebar. I must say that Rum Nation does not disappoint me!

MxMo LXXXVI, Pineapple!

Pineapple ready for cocktail mixing

The Hawaiians call me hala-kahiki, meaning hala from a foreign land….. who am i?

The PINEAPPLE !!

The mighty pineapple is the topic for this months Mixology Monday hosted by Thiago of the BartendingNotes blog. I haven`t participated in the MxMo in a very long time and so it´s long due…but who can resist such a topic? i love pineapples!

mxmologo

Here´s what was said in the MxMo announcement: Let’s bring the king of fruits back! After being canned, mixed with all sorts of sugary liquids and blended into… some 80s dreadful cocktails, the pineapple needs more respect! Once a symbol of hospitality, the King of Fruits might be know misunderstood.

One of the greatest non-citrus souring agents, used for crazy garnish ideas, infusions, old gum syrup flavoring, the pineapple is a fruit to be reckoned.

Be in a tiki cocktail, an old school classic like the Algonquin, a crazy flavor pairing or just mixed in a delicious Verdita, get creative and make a cocktail using any part of this delicious, juicy fruit or share you favorite pineapple cocktail with us!

The pineapple is called the “King of Fruits” for a reason – there is NO other fruit that has become so famous as the pineapple, not even banana! there is even pineapple houses built! And it´s so incredibly versatile, you can do so much with it, in drinks and food in a million ways….use as serving bowl, lamp, it´s sung about, painted, photographed…and no wonder, the fruit is beautiful! and a fabulous cocktail ingredient, and that`s where i use it the most and i use it extensively.

King of Fruits Swizzle

MxMo pineapple King of Fruits Swizzle 3

0.75 oz Koloa Kaua`i Coconut rum

0.75 oz Plantation overproof rum

0.5 oz Lost Spirits Navy Style rum (float)

1 oz Pineapple juice

0.5 oz honey-mix - equal parts honey and water, heated up to dissolve the honey and mix, then cooled to room temp

0.75 oz fresh lime juice

2 dash Bitter End Jamaican Jerk Bitters

Top with a little Sanpellegrino limonata

Swizzle all ingredients and top with Sanpellegrino limonata (sub Schweppes lemon)

Garnish with two pineapple leaves and a cocktail cherry.

A robust and typical tiki swizzle!

Mauna Kea

Mauna Kea

1 oz Rhum JM agricole blanc

1 oz Lost Spirits Polynesian Style rum

0.75 oz fresh lime

0.5 oz sugarcane syrup

1 oz pineapple juice

dash Mozart Chocolate bitters

1 egg white

Shake hard to emulsify the egg white, preferably dry shake first, then strain into a glass filled with cracked ice and partly rimmed, (with brown sugar) and top with grated nutmeg and cinnamon powder and then garnish with a pineapple leaf and speared cocktail cherry.

This drink is strong since the Lost Spirits rum is overproof but it´s still like drinking rum flavored silk…

And here´s a bonus – the rum sauce for pineapple skewers – as simple as it´s delicious, just rum, honey and cinnamon!

Last year at the Tales i went to a pineapple seminar and learnt a lot about this fruit and at the Angostura Rum pool party they served this rum sauce in pineapples to dip pineapple skewers in, a recipe i took with me, very tasty.

Rum Sauce to dip pineapple skewers in

RUM SAUCE

Fill a hollowed out pineapple fruit with rum, dissolved honey and cinnamon sticks. I first placed in a pan 4 oz aged rum (or rums) of choice, 2 roughly crushed Mexican cinnamon sticks (canela) and 2 tsp honey and slowly heated it up (carefully) just to dissolve the honey and let the cinnamon sticks start giving off their flavor.

Then leave to cool and sit for 15-30 min to let the flavors intensify. Then pour in the pineapple and dip pineapple skewers in the rum sauce, it´s delicious! and a perfect party or movie snack.

MxMo pineapple limonata

The limonata is one of my favorite soft drinks…

MxMo pineapple King of Fruits Swizzle 2

This awesome tiki mug is created by Scott Taylor who lives on Maui, Hawaii. if you want to see the awesome and very detailed mugs he makes you can go and check out his pictures on instagram ( type the name tikipop ) 

His shop “Beach Bumz” is one of the stops of Maui Tiki Tours owned by another great tiki mug artist – Rob Hawes – who`s Kala mug i featured in this earlier post. You find his pics on instagram too, (type tikirob) 

King of Fruits Swizzle

A loaded pineapple bowl..

MxMo Pineapple the rums

With potent delicious rums…

Happy Monday!

TOTC 2014 – A peek at some of the seminars

tales-monteleone8

That the Tales of the Cocktail is the world`s biggest cocktail and spirits event there is no doubt, all you need to do (apart from being in the Monteleone hotel lobby….) really is taking a look at the seminars. There´s so many seminars that it´s hard to pick which ones to go to. Also many are during the same times, making it even harder…you WILL miss more than a few…but the good thing is that there´s something for everyone, here are a few i hope to attend:

THE FLORIDITA: CRADLE OF THE DAIQUIRI

daiquiri

Without Havana’s Floridita bar there would be no Hemingway Daiquiri and possibly even no Mai Tai. In the 1930s, head bartender Constantino Ribalaigua Vert not only counted Ernest Hemingway and Errol Flynn among his regulars, but taught “Trader Vic” Bergeron how to make tropical drinks. Sample the menu and explore the legacy of Cuba’s legendary “Cradle of the Daiquiri” with cocktail historians (and Floridita customers) David Wondrich and Jeff “Beachbum” Berry.

I love daiquiris…and their history, it´s one of my favorite cocktails so i cannot let go of this seminar! and Jeff Berry and David Wondrich together is a lethal combo.

Thursday, July 17th at 10:00am – 11:30am, Queen Anne Ballroom, Hotel Monteleone.

WHICH RUM WHAT COCKTAIL AND WHY?

RUM Legends MG Black Barrel

Did you say rum? if you said rum, i`ll be there…and if it´s the Bum, Martin Cate, Alexandre Gabriel and Philip Duff having the seminar…i`ll be there!

Which styles of rums go best in which cocktails? What rums were the Gods of Tiki really using when they created landmark drinks like the Mai Tai, the Zombie, the Cobra’s Fang and the Pina Colada? What are the closest equivalents today?

And which rum actually tastes the best in which cocktail, regardless of whether it’s historically accurate or not?

Join tiki’s chief historian Jeff “Beachbum” Berry (author of “Potions of the Caribbean: 500 Years of Tropical Drinks and the People Behind Them”), Martin Cate (owner of Smugglers’ Cove, widely seen as America’s best modern tiki bar), Alexandre Gabriel (award-winning distiller and creator of the Plantation Rum range), and moderator Philip Duff (who once had a rum and coke by mistake and hated it) for a rollicking rum-soaked exploration of the real history of rum in cocktails and an extensive comparative tasting of cocktails made with different styles of rum.

Thursday, July 17th, at 1:00pm – 2:30pm, Grand Ballroom North, Royal Sonesta

Oh lovely Sonesta…for every year i go there during Tales i more and more fall in love with that beautiful hotel (especially it´s lush tropical courtyard…) it´s a treat to just be there! and that goes for Monteleone too!

And more about rum…

LIMITED EDITION AND VINTAGE RUMS

An exclusive interactive tasting seminar featuring a selection of rare editions, vintage rums, limited bottlings and collector’s private stock. The moderator and two panelists with in-depth experience of limited edition expressions will guide participants through an informative and entertaining tasting session featuring notable rums found principally the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Italy.

Friday, July 18th at 1:00pm – 2:30pm, Acadia-Madewood, Royal Sonesta.

With Robert Burr, Paul MacFadyen and Leonardo Pinto.

ABSINTHE COCKTAIL LAB

TB Tasting Nouvelle Orleans absinthe clsoe

Absinthe is along misunderstood spirit and cocktail ingredient. Often loved to the point of obsession by some and maligned by others, it has been used in cocktails arguably for as long as there have been cocktails.

This hands-on session with explore the ways in which absinthe has been used historically and can be used today as a cocktail ingredient.

Further, we will explore effects of both variations in quantity and of different styles of absinthe used to create unique cocktails. We will discuss and mix a number of classic cocktail recipes, and then allow attendees to mix variations of both classic and modern cocktails with different quantities and styles of absinthe.

Friday, July 18th at 3:00pm – 4:30pm, Riverview Room, Hotel Monteleone

The moderator is Stephen Gould and the panelists are Ted Breaux, Noah Heaney and Joshua Peter Smith.

Here`s the entire list of seminars and tickets can be purchased here!

ML lobby

TOTC 2014 – Top 4 Finalists for the Spirited Awards

Spirited Awards logo 2014

So finally, the top four finalists for the Spirited Awards are nominated!

Following a rigorous judging process by the most respected minds in the cocktail industry, the top four finalists have been selected for the 8th Annual Spirited Awards. The top four from each category are invited to attend the Spirited Awards on July 19, 2014 at the Sheraton New Orleans.

Tickets to the Spirited Awards ceremony can be purchased online at TalesoftheCocktail.com for $125 per individual ticket and $1250 per table of 10 seats.The Spirited Awards are just one part of the exciting 12th Anniversary Tales of the Cocktail taking place in New Orleans,July 16-20, 2014.Visit TalesoftheCocktail.com to learn more about the many other spirited events.

Without further ado, here are the top four finalists in each category:

AMERICAN CATEGORIES:

American Bartender of the Year:
Jeff Bell (New York)
Marcovaldo Dionysos (San Francisco)
Bobby Heugel (Houston)
Sean Kenyon (Denver)

Best American Bar Team:
Attaboy (New York)
Employees Only (New York)
Trick Dog (San Francisco)
Williams & Graham (Denver)

Best American Brand Ambassador:
Brooke Arthur (House Spirits)
Chris Patino (Pernod Ricard USA Portfolio)
Neyah White (Suntory Japanese Whiskies)
Angus Winchester (Tanqueray Gin)

Best American Cocktail Bar:
Canon (Seattle)
The Dead Rabbit (New York)
Smuggler’s Cove (San Francisco)
Williams & Graham (Denver)

Best American High Volume Cocktail Bar:
Employees Only (New York)
Honeycut (Los Angeles)
Polite Provisions (San Diego)
Trick Dog (San Francisco)

Best American Hotel Bar:
Clyde Common (Portland)
The Hawthorne (Boston)
Sable Kitchen & Bar (Chicago)
The Spare Room (Los Angeles)

Best American Restaurant Bar:
Clyde Common (Portland)
Gramercy Tavern (New York)
The NoMad (New York)
nopa (San Francisco)

Best New American Cocktail Bar:
Attaboy (New York)
Half Step (Austin)
Three Dots and A Dash (Chicago)
ZZ’s Clam Bar (New York)

INTERNATIONAL CATEGORIES:

International Bartender of the Year:
Simone Caporale (London)
Zdenek Kastanek (Singapore)
Hidetsugu Ueno (Tokyo)
Tom Walker (London)

Best International Bar Team:
28 Hong Kong Street (Singapore)
The American Bar at The Savoy (London)
Artesian at the Langham (London)
The Black Pearl (Melbourne)

Best International Brand Ambassador:
David Cordoba (Bacardi)
Giuseppe Gallo (Martini)
David Piper (Hendrick’s Gin)
Claire Smith (Belvedere Vodka)

Best International Cocktail Bar:
28 Hong Kong Street (Singapore)
Bramble Bar (Edinburgh)
Candelaria (Paris)
Door 74 (Amsterdam)

Best International High Volume Cocktail Bar:
Eau de Vie (Melbourne)
The Black Pearl (Melbourne)
London Cocktail Club (London)
Schumann’s (Munich)

Best International Hotel Bar:
Artesian at the Langham (London)
Beaufort Bar at The Savoy Hotel(London)
Black Angel’s Bar (Prague)
Connaught Bar at the Connaught(London)

Best International Restaurant Bar:
The Bon Vivant (Edinburgh)
Delicatessen (Moscow)
Spitalfields Bar at Hawksmoor(London)
Blind Pig at Social Eating House(London)

Best New International Cocktail Bar:
Blind Pig at Social Eating House (London)
Hello Sailor (Sydney)
NOLA (London)
White Lyan (London)

WRITING:

Best Cocktail & Spirits Publication:
Alcademics.com (United States)
Imbibe Magazine (United States)
PUNCH (punchdrink.com) (United States)
Ginger Magazine (France)

Best Cocktail & Spirits Writer:
Toby Cecchini (United States)
Paul Clarke (United States)
Jeffrey Morgenthaler (United States)
Robert Simonson (United States)

Best New Cocktail/Bartending Book:
Beachbum Berry’s Potions of the Caribbean by Jeff Berry
Cocktail Culture by Shawn Soole & Nate Caudle
The Curious Bartender by Tristan Stephenson
The Drunken Botanist by Amy Stewart

OVERALL CATEGORIES:

Best Bar Mentor:
Jacob Briars
Jackson Cannon
Jim Meehan
Dushan Zaric

Best New Product:
Ancho Reyes
Crawley’s Imperial Shaker Machine
Del Maguey Ibérico mezcal
Martini Gran Lusso Vermouth

World’s Best Cocktail Menu:
The Aviary (Chicago)
The Nightjar (London)
Pouring Ribbons (New York)
Trick Dog (San Francisco)

World’s Best Drinks Selection:
Connaught Bar at the Connaught (London)
The Dead Rabbit (New York)
Multnomah Whisk{e}y Library (Portland)
Tommy’s (San Francisco)

Congrats to all the finalists and good luck!

TOTC Spirited Awards Logo

Rum Nation Jamaica Pot Still Limited Edition White Rum

RUM NATION JAMAICA POT STILL bottle close

From Rum Nation comes this outright fabulous unaged white rum, a Jamaican pot-still rum from Catherine, Jamaica.

First thought that hit me when i took the first sip was, this reminds me of a refined, deeper and more complex “third dimensional JWray” but that has much more going on… and it packs a decent punch with it´s 57% ABV or 114 proof.

Yet it´s smooth…and it has no sugar added.

The taste note that`s called glue or wood polish is the same that i call “kerosene” or “JWray” :-D i find it very appealing, it adds a raw note and vibrant herbal deliciousness. It got that genuine Jamaican pot still funk to it.

And that herbal/wood polish character is part of the flavors in this rum but it got more…

This new limited edition from Rum Nation aims at taking the taster by surprise – it`s not a mainstream white rum they find here. Here`s a rum from a Jamaican distillery using pot stills and willing to experiment with slow fermentation and distillation times to provide a white rum with a markedly estery aromatic profile.

Do i see a slowly emerging trend here? it occurs to me that rums with more flavor are popping up both here and there…and i like that!

I made a grapefruit daiquiri and the drink turned out incredibly refreshing with the rum really shining through.You don`t need much of this rum to totally transform a cocktail.

And i think that`s one of the aims with this rum, to make a rum that can be used in cocktails both in lesser amounts or more, mixed with other rums or by itself to create cocktails of various degrees of flavor experiences. It would fit both in classic cocktails, modern takes or tiki drinks, it´s versatile and fits many styles.

So here are my taste notes:

Nose – Fruity….vibrant and crisp with green banana, tropical fruit mash and peel, caramelized cane sugar, “kerosene or herbal polish”, apricot, mango, citrus peel…green grass, white pepper.

Mouth – Immediately comes the fruity and herbal character of this rum forward, backed by that “kerosene” typically Jamaican flavor, it´s slightly peppery, spicy, vibrant and smooth.

I`d give it a 9/10

Also i need to say something about the bottle which i find lovely, it´s low and rounded, just lovely to hold and pour from and the label on the bottle with a silver colored engraved Jamaican stamp is beautiful! I also like the large black shadow of the name “Jamaica” on top of the grey, it looks classy and modern yet still has some genuine “old” feel to it.

Like old Caribbean..

The stamp on the bottle is due to Fabio Rosso being an avid stamp collector in younger years and now adding a touch of class to the bottles with the stamps and a nod to the country of origin. Nice touch!

I read about the stamps in an interview with Fabio made by Luca Chichizola and you can read the full interview here. It`s a very interesting story about how Rum Nation came to be.

In cocktails – a little goes a long way and here´s room for lots of experimentation since only a moderate amount of this rum is needed to change the flavor of a cocktail.

I wonder what happens if you pair this with a rhum agricole? i`m gonna test that later. Apart from that, the daiquiri really shines with it. And of course this would be great with Ting, the Jamaican grapefruit beverage!

Since i`m a fan of this kind of flavorful rums i go all in with the cocktails!

Grapefruit Daiquiri

Grapefruit daiquiri

2 oz Rum Nation Jamaica Pot Still Rum

0.5 oz fresh lime juice

0.5 oz sugarcane syrup

0.5 oz grapefruit juice (white)

4 dashes Bitter End Thai bitters

Shake with ice and strain into a well chilled cocktail coupe.

This is VERY refreshing…and the Thai bitters adds a bit of bite of spice.

In the Potions of the Caribbean i found a range of drinks i could do but i decided to make Jasper`s Rum Punch and switch out the JWray for Rum Nation Jamaican Pot Still Rum instead. I figured since the flavor profile is similar it would fit with this cocktail.

Jasper`s Rum Punch

RNJ Jaspers Rum Punch

1.5 oz Rum Nation Jamaican Pot Still Rum

1.5 oz Jasper`s Basic Stock Mix

Pour everything into a tall glass 2/3 filled with crushed ice and swizzle until well chilled. Top up with more crushed ice to fill, then swizzle again and finally garnish with mint sprig and lime slice speared to cocktail cherry.

I grated a little nutmeg on top of the ice as well.

To make Jasper`s stock mix – Squeeze 2 oz fresh lime juice into a jar and add 1.5 oz white sugar. Put lid on and shake until sugar dissolves, then add 3 -4 dashes Angostura bitters and 1/4 tsp grated nutmeg. Leave in fridge overnight and shake before using.

And finally, a very beloved oldie – the Chartreuse Swizzle. But this time i changed it up a little bit and used equal parts green and yellow chartreuse to give it a slight more tropical sweetness, both floral and herbal.

Also i switched out the pineapple juice for fresh grapefruit juice, but pineapple juice is tasty too and makes a sweeter drink.

Tropical Chartreuse Swizzle

RNJ Tropical Chartreuse Swizzle

1.5 oz grapefruit juice (white)

0.75 oz lime juice

1/4 oz Falernum

1 oz Rum Nation Jamaican Pot Still Rum

0.5 oz Green Chartreuse

0.5 oz Yellow Chartreuse

2 dash Angostura bitters

Fresh mint for garnish

Add ingredients to a glass full of crushed ice. Swizzle until the glass frost on the outside, garnish with mint, and add straw.

Now Rum Nation knows how to deliver “that little extra” and this they delivered in the form of a box with Valrhona chocolates…so here´s for doing a little rum and chocolate pairing as well!

RUM NATION JAMAICA POT STILL bottle and vahlrona sample pack

The chocolates flavors are Jivara (40% creamy and chocolatey) Tanariva (33% sweet and caramelized) Alpaco (66% floral and oaky) Maniari (64% fresh and tangy) Tainori (64% fruity and intense) Caraibe (66% balanced and velvety) Guanaja (70% bittersweet and elegant) Abinao (70% powerful and tannic) – 8 flavors in all…

Obviously i can`t pair the rum with all of them in this post but after trying them i picked one that i think goes very well with this rum and which i warmly recommend – the bittersweet and elegant Guanaja. The bittersweet flavor pairs well with this rum i think.

So how do you perform a rum and chocolate pairing? well i`m not an expert in this area but rum with fruity or peppery flavors does go very well with chocolate and adding a little water or an ice cube to the glass will help mellow out the stronger flavor elements in the rum as to not overpower the chocolate.

RUM NATION JAMAICA POT STILL vahlrona sample pack

 

RUM NATION JAMAICA POT STILL bottle front

Rum lovers ? i sure i can recommend this rum! go get it if you have a chance…it´s a limited edition. Rum Nation have once again come up with a great rum!

Caroni 1999 Single Barrel Rum

Caroni 1999 bottle

Here´s another Caroni, also a single barrel rum, this one is 14 year old. It`s not as heavy as the last one but does have some punch with it´s 61% ABV. I find it fruity and pleasant.

Caroni Sugar Factory

There were originally more than 50 different rums brands produced in Trinidad – by 1950 that number had reduced to 8 and today there is only one left – Angostura. Caroni was established in 1918 on the site of the old Caroni Sugar factory and operated until 1993.

The Caroni sugar factory started to operate a cast iron still in 1918 and at that time there were some eight or ten other sugar factories operating, each producing different types of rums and these rums were bought up by merchants and sold to rum shops all over the island. There were all kinds of “blends” and concoctions being made by both the merchants and the rum shop owners and sold over the counter as “petit quarts”

Eventually Caroni increased the quality of the distilling process and went from the original cast iron still to use a wooden coffey still – until 1945 when they got a copper still which was followed by a single column in 1957 and then a four column Gerb Herman still in 1980.

For nearly 100 years Caroni has had large sugar estates on the island and was the major producer of molasses. Sadly now since it`s closed no more of their magnificient rums are produced and when it´s gone it´s gone.

And that is sad because the Caroni rums are unique. That said i must confess i haven`t yet tried many but the ones i`ve tried have all been outstanding and original in the same way as the demerara rums are.

And i must say the flavor of the so called “heavy” Caronis DOES remind me quite a bit of a demerara rum, it has the same full bodied character but without that demerara flavor that only demerara rums have but it has the same type of character despite of being a totally different rum.

Caroni 1999 Single Barrel

I wouldn`t call this one “heavy” though despite the strength because it has a very fruity character but neither would i call it “light”

Nose - The color is amber, like that of mashed mature banana and on the nose it´s fruity with hints of banana, apricot, papaya, orange peel and sugarcane.

Mouth - In the mouth undiluted i get wood, burnt molasses, tropical fruits (same as the nose) it´s smooth to sip despite it´s strength and it has a very warm feeling. It´s not heavy, it´s fruity and complex with an array of tropical fruit notes.

A lively and happy rum!

Adding a few drops of water to the glass brings out more fruitness and makes it taste sweeter while still having a punch. It´s easy to sip this rum!

I decided to make a daiquiri…and i was actually surprised…

This rum makes such a flavorful daiquiri that it´s ridiculous! i expected a good one but not THAT good, oh my…

I made it a little bit different and maybe it was the mix of lime juices also that helped this drink become something out of the ordinary daiquiri-wise…?

But it wouldn`t been that good without this premium rum that`s for sure! i could go and buy a bottle just to make daiquiris with it…

Sugarcane Daiquiri

Sugarcane daiquiri

1.5 oz Caroni – 99 Single Barrel Rum

0.5 oz Petit Canne sugarcane syrup

0.25 oz fresh lime juice

0.25 oz fresh lemon juice

0.25 oz key lime juice

Glass – Libbey SPKSY

Shake with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass, rimmed with demerara sugar.

I can recommend anyone who likes strong rum with good flavor to buy this Caroni – 99 single barrel rum.

Outside of Sweden it can be purchased online on the Master of Malt website.

TOTC 2014 – Top 10 Finalists for the Spirited Awards

TOTC Spirited Awards Logo

Tales of the Cocktail is kicking off in about one month and 3 weeks and here are the top ten finalists in 23 categories for the 2014 Spirited Awards which will take place at the Sheraton New Orleans on saturday, july 19.

They were chosen out of hundreds of nominees by American and International judging committees comprised of the most respected minds in the cocktail industry.

The event sponsors includes, 86 Company, American Harvest, Angostura, Bacardi USA, Beverage Media, Nicolas Feuillatte, Pernod Ricard USA, Pierre Ferrand and William Grant & Sons.

Tickets to the Spirited Awards can be purchased online at TalesoftheCocktail.com

 

Here are the finalists:

AMERICAN CATEGORIES:

American Bartender of the Year
Jeff Bell (New York)
Erick Castro (San Diego)
Marcovaldo Dionysos (San Francisco)
Bobby Heugel (Houston)
Sean Kenyon (Denver)
John Lermayer (Miami)
Ryan Maybee (Kansas City)
Ivy Mix (New York)
Jeffrey Morgenthaler (Portland)
Pamela Wiznitzer (New York)

Best American Brand Ambassador
Brooke Arthur (House of Spirits)
Colin Asare-Appiah (Bacardi)
Elayne Duff (Diageo Reserve)
Jamie Evans (Oxley gin)
Bernie Lubbers (Heaven Hill Distilleries)
Freddy May (Glenfiddich Single Malt Scotch Whisky)
Chris Patino (Pernod Ricard USA Portfolio)
Nick van Tiel (Plymouth Gin / Beefeater)
Neyah White (Suntory Japanese Whiskies)
Angus Winchester (Tanqueray Gin)

Best American Cocktail Bar
Anvil Bar & Refuge (Houston)
The Aviary (Chicago)
canon: whiskey and bitters emporium (Seattle)
Cure (New Orleans)
The Dead Rabbit (New York)
Noble Experiment (San Diego)
Prizefighter (Emeryville)
Smuggler’s Cove (San Francisco)
Trick Dog (San Francisco)
Williams & Graham (Denver)

Best American High Volume Cocktail Bar
Employees Only (New York)
Flatiron Lounge (New York)
Harvard & Stone (Los Angeles)
Honeycut (Los Angeles)
The NoMad (New York)
Polite Provisions (San Diego)
Sable Kitchen & Bar (Chicago)
Saxon + Parole Restaurant (New York)
Three Dots and a Dash (Chicago)
Trick Dog (San Francisco)

Best American Restaurant Bar
320 Main (Orange County)
Bestia (Los Angeles)
Clyde Common (Portland)
Gramercy Tavern (New York)
No. 9 Park (Boston)
The NoMad (New York)
nopa (San Francisco)
OAK at fourteenth (Boulder)
The Rieger Hotel Grill & Exchange (Kansas City)
The Silver Dollar (Louisville)

Best American Hotel Bar
Bellocq (New Orleans)
Bemelmans Bar (New York)
The Broken Shaker (Miami)
Carousel Bar at the Hotel Monteleone (New Orleans)
Clyde Common (Portland)
The Hawthorne (Boston)
The Regent Cocktail Club (Miami)
Sable Kitchen & Bar (Chicago)
The Spare Room at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel (Los Angeles)
Vesper Bar (Las Vegas)

Best New American Cocktail Bar

Attaboy (New York)
Cane & Table (New Orleans)
Celeste (Chicago)
Golden Cadillac (New York)
Half Step (Austin)
Kimball House (Atlanta)
Mockingbird Hill (Washington, D.C.)
Multnomah Whisk{e}y Library (Portland)
Three Dots and a Dash (Chicago)
ZZ’s Clam Bar (New York)

Best American Bar Team – New Category

Attaboy (New York)
Clyde Common (Portland)
The Dead Rabbit (New York)
Drink (Boston)
Eastern Standard Kitchen & Drinks (Boston)
Employees Only (New York)
The NoMad (New York)
The Regent Cocktail Club (Miami)
Trick Dog (San Francisco)
Williams & Graham (Denver)

INTERNATIONAL CATEGORIES:

International Bartender of the Year
Marian Beke (London)
Monica Berg (London)
Simone Caporale (London)
Ryan Chetiyawardana (London)
Mario Kappes (Hamburg)
Zdenek Kastanek (Singapore)
Tim Phillips (Sydney)
Hidetsugu Ueno (Tokyo)
Tom Walker (London)
Jason Williams (Sydney)

Best International Brand Ambassador
Ian “Rum Ambassador” Burrell
David Cordoba (Bacardi)
Giuseppe Gallo (Martini & Rossi)
Tim Etherington Judge (Diageo Reserve)
George Nemec (Becherovka)
David Piper (Hendrick’s Gin)
Claire Smith (Belvedere Vodka)
Manuel Terron (Midori Melon Liqueur)
Camille Vidal (St-Germain Elderflower Liqueur)
Maximilian Warner (Chivas)

Best International Cocktail Bar
28 Hong Kong Street (Singapore)
69 Colebrooke Row (London)
Bramble Bar (Edinburgh)
Buck and Breck (Berlin)
Bulletin Place (Sydney)
Candelaria (Paris)
Chainaya. Tea & Cocktails (Moscow)
Door 74 (Amsterdam)
Eau De Vie Melbourne (Melbourne)
Happiness Forgets (London)

Best International High Volume Cocktail Bar
Big Easy Covent Garden (London)
Black Angel’s Bar (Prague)
The Attic at the Black Pearl (Melbourne)
The Cufflink Club (Singapore)
Dvars (Amsterdam)
Eau De Vie Melbourne (Melbourne)
Frank’s (Buenos Aires)
The Lobo Plantation (Sydney)
London Cocktail Club (London)
Schumann’s American Bar (Munich)

Best International Restaurant Bar
The Red Bar at Bam-Bous (London)
The Bon Vivants (Edinburgh)
Delicatessen (Moscow)
The Gilbert Scott (London)
Spitalfields Bar at Hawksmoor (London)
Hix Soho (London)
The Lui Bar at Vue De Monde (Melbourne)
Oblix Restaurant (London)
Porteno Restaurant (Sydney)
Blind Pig at Social Eating House (London)

Best International Hotel Bar
Artesian at the Langham (London)
Bar at Home Hotel (Buenos Aires)
Beaufort Bar at The Savoy Hotel (London)
Black Angel’s Bar (Prague)
Clive’s Classic Lounge (Victoria)
Connaught Bar at the Connaught (London)
Ohla Boutique Bar at Ohla Hotel (Barcelona)
Punch Room at The London Edition (London)
Scarfes Bar at Rosewood London (London)
Widder Bar at the Widder Hotel (Zurich)

Best New International Cocktail Bar
The Barber Shop (Sydney)
Blind Pig at Social Eating House (London)
Hello Sailor (Sydney)
Holmens Kanal (Copenhagen)
Imperial Craft Cocktail Bar (Tel Aviv)
The Liquor Rooms (Dublin)
Little Jumbo (Victoria)
NOLA (London)
Punch Room at The London Edition (London)
White Lyan (London)

Best International Bar Team – New Category
28 Hong Kong Street (Singapore)
The American Bar at The Savoy (London)
Artesian at the Langham (London)
The Baxter Inn (Sydney)
The Black Pearl (Melbourne)
Blind Pig at Social Eating House (London)
Connaught Bar at the Connaught (London)
Le Lion – Bar de Paris (Hamburg)
The Nightjar (London)
Ruby Cocktail Chronicles (Copenhagen)

WRITING CATEGORIES:

Best Cocktail & Spirits Writer
Jenny Adams (United States)
Sam Bygrave (Australia)
Toby Cecchini (United States)
Paul Clarke (United States)
Camper English (United States)
Jeffrey Morgenthaler (United States)
Darcy O’Neil (Canada)
Daniel Priseman (United Kingdom)
Jane Ryan (United Kingdom)
Robert Simonson (United Kingdom)

Best Cocktail & Spirits Publication
Alcademics.com (United States)
Australian Bartender magazine (Australia)
BarLifeUK (United Kingdom)
DRINK (China)
Ginger Magazine (France)
Imbibe Magazine (United States)
Liquor.com (United States)
PUNCH (punchdrink.com) (United States)
The Cocktail Lovers magazine (United Kingdom)
The Spirits Business (United Kingdom)

Best New Cocktail/Bartending Book (Top 9)
The Art of the Shim by Dinah Sanders
Apothecary Cocktails: Restorative Drinks from Yesterday and Today by Warren Bobrow
Beachbum Berry’s Potions of the Caribbean by Jeff Berry
Cocktail for a Crowd by Kara Newman
The Curious Bartender by Tristan Stephenson
The Drunken Botanist by Amy Stewart
Home Bar Basics (and Not-So-Basics) Cocktail Guidebook, 2nd Edition by Dave Stolte
Wine Cocktails (Planet of the Grapes) by Jason Wilson
Whiskey Women: The Untold Story of How Women Saved Bourbon, Scotch and Irish Whiskey by Fred Minnick

OVERALL CATEGORIES:

Best Bar Mentor
Erik Adkins
Bridget Albert
Jacob Briars
Jackson Cannon
Wayne Collins
Doug Frost
Francesco LaFranconi
Jim Meehan
Andy Seymour
Dushan Zaric

Best New Product
Ancho Reyes
Beefeater Burrough’s Reserve gin
Crawley’s Imperial Shaker Machine
Del Maguey Ibérico mezcal
iSpoon by Monkey Shoulder
Martini Gran Lusso Vermouth
Nikka Coffey Grain Whisky
Plantation Original Dark Rum
Sipsmith VJOP Gin
Small Hand Foods Tonic Syrup

World’s Best Cocktail Menu
69 Colebrooke Row (London)
The Aviary (Chicago)
canon: whiskey and bitters emporium (Seattle)
Eau De Vie (Sydney)
The Nightjar (London)
The NoMad (New York)
Polite Provisions (San Diego)
Pouring Ribbons (New York)
Three Dots and a Dash (Chicago)
Trick Dog (San Francisco)

World’s Best Drinks Selection
Baba Au Rum (Athens)
Connaught Bar at the Connaught (London)
The Dead Rabbit (New York)
Eau De Vie Melbourne (Melbourne)
Hard Water (San Francisco)
Liberty Bar (Seattle)
Multnomah Whisk{e}y Library (Portland)
Old Crow (Zurich)
Scopa Italian Roots (Los Angeles)
Tommy’s (San Francisco)

Congrats to all the finalists and good luck!

Making Rhum Arrangè

RHUM ARRANGE ANANAS QUI PLEURE4 BOTTLE SIDE PINEAPPLE

First time i saw rhum arrangè being made by suspending the fruits above the rhum in large jars was when i saw a video from La Rèunion and i got quite curious. There were all kinds of fruits hanging there with all kinds of things (spices) sticking out of the fruits. I had known about rhum arrangè before but not being made that way. So i decided to try some day and now it´s the time.

The style is called in french –  “ananas qui pleure”  (the crying pineapple) since the pineapple is suspended in the jar above the rhum agricole as to not touch the rhum and thus avoiding any flavors from the skin to get into the rhum. This is typically done with citrus fruits which carries bitter flavors in their skin.

But also this kind of maceration above the rhum can be done with any fruits and in the French islands only the imagination is the limit, you see ALL kinds of things in intriguing jars…some you have NO idea what they are…

And there´s for example rhum arrangè with shrimp and snake…i`m actually wondering how it would taste with a crawfish rhum?

The one i`m experimenting with here has New Orleans community coffee pecan-praline coffee beans stuck into one side of the fruit and Tahitian vanilla beans in the other and the beans are cut in the ends so the juice from the pineapple can pass through like a “funnel” through the vanilla bean bringing some of the tiny vanilla seeds along down into the rhum.

And all the pineapple, vanilla-coffee goodness will slowly drop down to flavor the rhum…thus the name “ananas qui pleure…The whole thing will sit like that in the closed jar until the fall, at least 4 months.

I wrote a post about rhum arrangè before and i that post i included that video from the island of la Rèunion where there is a restaurant called Le Saint-Bernard that contains ONLY rhum arrangès (about 400 rhums) of all kinds of flavors made with fruits, roots, spices and God knows what…and many are suspended this way.

Unfortunately (very) the video i first saw is not there anymore but the article (in french) is. The place looks like a veritable laboratory of rhum arrangè, absolutely amazing and a place i`d love to visit.

In my earlier post i wrote about this method of hanging the fruit above the alcohol explaining it:

There´s two different ways of macerating, one is the traditional common way of submerging the fruits and spices into the rum. Then there´s another where you hang the fruits (usually citrus fruits) as they are or with things inserted into the fruits – like coffee beans and hung above the liquid.

The idea is that the aromatics and oils are derived from the citrus and spices without any bitterness from the pith and that´s the reason this method is usually used for citrus fruits.

Here`s a link to a case study with limoncello.

This method is called D.S.M – or Delicious Scientific Magic!!

DSM – or diffusion – The alcohol, exerting a vapor pressure, will diffuse into the lemons saturating the lemon, thus the loss of alcohol in a closed system.

In turn, the lemon oil will also exert a vapor pressure; the lemon smell you get when you cut the skin. It will diffuse out of the lemon and saturate the alcohol.

In the Limoncello post they are talking about high proof or overproof spirits but the traditional rhum arrangè isn`t necessarily done with especially high proof  rhums, i think the common proof is between 45-55%

Here´s one of the videos about the rhums arrangès at Le Saint-Bernard:

Here`s also a link to some pictures of the rhums.

As you can see there´s absolutely no limit of what you can do with rhum arrangè…but what you need is a lot of patience because this ain`t no quick fix!

So here`s what i did to make this variation with pineapple, vanilla and coffee:

1 – Prepare everything you need, jar, rhum or rum, fruit (not too ripe), spices, a string to tie the fruit with. Cut the vanilla beans in half pieces and cut off the top ends. Make sure the jar and the string is clean and the fruit washed.

RHUM ARRANGE ANANAS QUI PLEURE 1

2 - Cut up the fruit to a size that fits the jar and discard the leaves, then cut small holes in the fruit and stick the coffee beans in one side and the vanilla beans in the other (the skin side) I had to cut up this pineapple because it was too big for the jar but one can also use whole fruits with this method.

RHUM ARRANGE ANANAS QUI PLEURE CUT UP FRUIT COLLAGE

3 – Add the rhum to the jar, then the sugarcane syrup (i took one bottle (75 cl rhum) and add 2-3 tsp of sugarcane syrup. (or 15 cl/o.5 oz)

4 – Suspend the fruit to the cover of the jar with strings so that the fruit do not touch the rum and close the jar good and SEAL it hermetically with tape and leave to macerate for a minimum of 4 months ( it can go 6 months without problem or longer, there are rhum arrangès that have been sitting 3-4 years…)

But i think 4-6 month is good for this one. I`m planning to open the jar in the fall and see what i got – exciting…

RHUM ARRANGE ANANAS QUI PLEURE 3 PICS COLLAGE

And that is all!