St Nicholas Abbey 5 Year and White Rums

St Abbey Rums 2

The St Nicholas Abbey Distillery in Barbados operated by the Warren family is one of those gems in the rum world that you know always stand for impeccable quality and that will bring smiles to your face when you try their amazing rums which uses traditional distillation.

The St Nicholas Abbey plantation was purchased by the Warren family in 2006 who restored the property to it´s original state and it´s one of the last surviving 17th century plantations on the island. Their mission is to make it self supporting and it also contains a cottage industry of sugar cane related products such as tasty brown sugars, molasses, sugar honey and rum cakes to name a few of the lovely products they make on the estate.

My first experience with their rums was at the UK Rumfest 2011 (and later in 2013) when i tried their range of rums and got totally blown away and among them was one peculiar rum that not yet had a name, an unaged white rum called the “see through”

The-see-through-768x1024

The unaged “see through” was made with estate grown cane, crushed in a traditional steam press and then made into sugar cane honey and fermented before being transferred into a pot/column hybrid still named Annabelle for a double distillation. And then after distillation only water is added and there`s no chill-filtration used. It was a rum with a rich fruit and vanilla finish.

This lovely white rum later got a name – simply St Nicholas Abbey White Rum – and became the winner of the Bronze Medal at the 2012 International Wine and Spirits Competition in London and in 2014 it won the Premium White Rum Category at the Bartender’s Best Awards.

Now at this past years UK Rumfest was out for tasting a portion of this white rum that was laid to rest and aged for five years and thus creating their first estate produced 5 Year Old Rum.. It`s their first rum distilled and aged entirely on the estate (the previous rums were made exclusively for the plantation by master Distiller Richard Seale from R.L Seale and Foursquare) and was ready in 2014.

The St Nicholas Abbey Rum 5 Year Old is a beautiful Rum and commemorates a beautiful story – not least, the first generation of Warren’s, Arthur and Henry, born into St. Nicholas Abbey 21st May 2014. I believe the 5 Year Old Rum will be released soon during this year.

Fermented sugar cane juice

Sugarcane honey

Interesting also with St Nicholas Abbey rums is that these are not molasses rums! but neither are they rhum agricoles – they are made from fermented sugar cane juice, called “sugarcane honey”. Rhum agricole is made from fresh sugar cane juice and tastes totally different.

The fermented sugar cane juice is thick, syrupy and very dark brown in color, almost black – it looks like molasses but it is not and it doesn`t taste very much like molasses either. It has a sort of funny smell, i cannot really describe it, it´s like a mix of earth, dirt, molasses, old sugarcane syrup, yeast and overripe purple plums.

The taste is somewhat like that too, like a mix of  Steen`s sugarcane syrup, earth, dirt, yeast and overripe plums…it´s not very sweet, rather semi-sweet. It has that kind of earhtiness (not heat) as say, chipotle peppers. Could be used for a earhty ti-punch…

Interesting how it can bring forth such rums as these!

Here´s a short description of my impressions of these two wonderful rums:

St Nicholas Abbey White Rum:

St Nicholas Abbey White

The nose is intense with fruity and sugar cane notes and somewhat slight peppery, this is a rum that got both attitude, complexity and flavor.

In the mouth it`s rich, a bit fiery with white pepper notes, tropical fruits and vanilla. It has the same sort of intensity as a rhum agricole but lacks the agricole`s pronounced grassiness, instead it has a mellow fruity and slightly green vegetal note. And it has a little “bite” but in a good way, it´s not at all harsh, it`s round and very very nice.

The bottle is simple, tall and elegant.

Very pleasant rum and for mixing it`s perfect but it`s just as good for sipping. I would say it´s a very good all-round white rum that got it´s own personality with a slightly peppery attitude.

Try it in a refreshing daiquiri!

Now let´s move on the five year old version of the former “see through”:

St Nicholas Abbey 5 Year Old Rum:

St Nicholas Abbey 5

In the nose: It has a brilliant golden amber color and when opening the bottle and pouring a little of the golden goodness into a tasting glass the velvety rich nose is filling the air with sweet, toffee-like notes that are totally addictive. I smell depth here too, not just toffee-like sweetness, there`s a hint of wood from the barrel it has been resting in adding some depth and character.

The taste: Here you can feel the rum is young but it´s exceptionally well balanced and the same soft velvety character that was in the nose comes forth here too. It`s rich, warm, welcoming with notes of toffee, vanilla, orange peel and tropical fruit backed up by some spicier woody notes.

The slightly peppery notes from the unaged white rum is not present, instead it´s mellow and soft but does have a lively character.

I have tried their 12 and 15 year olds and they are both incredible rums, especially the 15 year, and this one is like their little sister. It has the richness of what i have got to know as the trademark of the St Nicholas Abbey rums but it lacks the extreme depth and complexity that the 12 and 15 year olds have and of course, it´s a lot younger! that said, it´s a very good rum and you can safely go and purchase a bottle without any hesitation, this is good stuff.

I would actually use this as both sipper and mixer and leave the older rums entirely for the sipping glasses.

The decanter bottle is a masterpiece of beauty, simple and yet distinctive, elegant and with a personal touch with the beautiful engravings of the St Nicholas Abbey estate mansion and palmtrees (they do personal engravings too with for example your name on the bottle when you purchase directly at the plantation) hand applied labels and the mahogany cork topped with embossed leather which is symbolic of the islands first mahogany trees, planted 250 years ago on Cherry Hill.

It`s really a thing of beauty!

St Nicholas Abbey cork top

Final thoughts:

I cannot enough say how good the rums from St Nicholas Abbey are, everyone of them! this is quality at it´s best! and there are of course no extra sugar or additives in this rum. Go get a bottle of these and their other expressions and you will have treasures in your house.

They are on the higher price level yes but you will get really good value for the money.

Everyone knows i`m in love with the tropics, so let`s make a daiquiri dressed up in tropical attire:

Bajan Daiquiri

Bajan Daiquiri

2 oz St Nicholas Abbey White Rum

0.5-0.75 oz fresh lime juice

0.5 oz sugarcane syrup

Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail coupe or glass and garnish with something tropical….i used speared pink bougainvillea, braided palm leaves and a lime slice.

Enjoy!

 

Bajan Daiquiri collage

 

 

See other St Nicholas White rum reviews on RumRatings

See other St Nicholas 5 Year Old rum reviews on RumRatings

Perique Liqueur de Tabac – A Taste of France and Louisiana

 

With a taste of France and Louisiana…here is a lovely liqueur made from fermented perique tobacco from St. James Parish, Louisiana, Eau de vie and a hint of sweet sugarcane.

I was lucky to receive a sample earlier and now is the right time to review this interesting product, it´s funny how after a certain time of booze blogging you develop a feel as to when the right time to post a certain post or review is just right. And now perique is in the air…

Louisiana perique happens to be the rarest and strongest tobacco in the world – with aromas and spiciness provided by the unique terroir of the mighty Mississippi River. The perique tobacco liqueur is 31% abv (62 proof) and made for Jade Liqueurs by Distillerie Combier in France.

The perique tobacco liqueur is distilled since 2006 by Ted Breaux but since not much perique tobacco exists as of today, this purely artisanal liqueur is available only in limited quantity – where to buy is written at the bottom of this post – and there´s also plans to distribute in the US.

PERIQUE TOBACCO (Wiki)

When the Acadians made their way into Louisiana in 1719`s, the choctaw and chickasaw tribes were cultivating a variety of tobacco with a distinctive, strong and fruity aroma and flavor. A farmer named Pierre Chenet is credited with first turning this local tobacco into what is now known as perique in 1824 through the technique of pressure-fermentation. And since then the cultivating tradition has been continued for centuries.

The tobacco plants are pruned to exactly 12 leaves through their early growth. In late June, when the leaves are a dark, rich green and the plants are 24-30 inches tall, the whole plant is harvested in the late evening and hung to dry in a sideless curing barn.

Once the leaves have partially dried the leaves are moistened with water and stemmed by hand. The leaves are then rolled into “torquettes” of approximately 1 pound and packed into hickory whiskey barrels. The tobacco is kept under pressure using oak blocks and massive screw jacks, forcing nearly all the air out of the still-moist leaves.

Approximately once a month the pressure is released, and each of the torquettes is worked by hand to permit a little air back into the tobacco. After a year of this treatment, the perique is ready for consumption, although it may be kept fresh under pressure for many years. Extended exposure to air degrades the particular character of perique. The finished tobacco is dark brown, nearly black, very moist with a fruity, slightly vinegary aroma.

Most Louisiana perique has been cultivated by farmer Percy Martin in Grande Pointe, Louisiana. For reasons unknown, the particular flavor and character of Louisiana perique can only be acquired on a small triangle of Saint James Parish, less than 3 by 10 miles.

Although at its peak Saint James Parish was producing around 20 tons of perique a year, output is now merely a few barrelsful. Most of the perique used in pipe tobacco is not perique at all, but green river burley that is processed in the same manner as perique. Although the process produces a strong, spicy tobacco, it is a far different product from the genuine perique grown on Percy Martin’s and the Poche family’s farms.

So the world”s supply of perique tobacco – all 12 acres of it…is farmed only 50 miles from downtown New Orleansand planted and harvested all by hand..no wonder this is a very exquisite liqueur. Moreover it`s the only tobacco crop in the US to be fermented in whiskey barrels – an unusual way for tobacco to be processed – but no fermentation is no perique.

From what i read nobody knows exactly why perique only grows in St James parish but there is three factors that makes perique distinct from all other tobacco – the soil of st James, the perique seed and the fermentation process which sweetens the tobacco by soaking it in its own sap.

Some says St James parish sits on top of a mineral deposit that apparently gives the tobacco it´s distinct, spicy and robust flavor but nobody knows for sure – this is one of the world`s mystery crops.

The perique liqueur is golden amber in color and the nose is that of fine tobacco, light and delicate yet masculine with warm woody notes – it´s light but certainly not weak. The flavor is the same but more intense and with some fire – yet very smooth, it´s like a fine cognac spiced with tobacco and leather sweetend with sugarcane – but still more on the dry side than sweet and perique liqueur is of course free from nicotine.

I find it very pleasant and so interesting! and even though the tobacco adds a leathery masculine touch it`s balanced by a light and feminine sweetness without being too sweet – it´s rather on the dry side –  and the tobacco flavor is not overpowering in any way but still clearly present.

It makes an interesting drink-mixer but can also be sipped neat like a fine cognac. Also for those who doesn`t smoke (like me) but still enjoys the aroma of a good cigar or pipe this liqueur will allow you to do just that without any of the harmful elements you find in a cigarette.

Final thoughts – this stuff is just lovely! it goes well with not only cognac but also dark rum, whisk(e)y and tequila reposado or anejo.

I`m gonna make three very nice cocktails with it, the Louisiana Sour and the Smoky Sidecar plus a twist i made of the Louisiana Sour adding rum and curacao bitters to the party.. The Louisiana Sour was created by Amanda Humphrey at Paramount in London and the Smokey Sidecar was made by the Cocktail Lovers.

LOUISIANA SOUR


0.75 oz Perique Tobacco Liqueur

0.75 oz Pierre Ferrand Cognac Ambre

0.75 oz Fresh lemon juice

0.5 oz Sugarcane syrup

2 dashes Chocolate bitters

2 dashes orange bitters

Squeeze of egg white

Dry shake with no ice (or use a hand-mixer) for a few sec and then shake hard with ice and strain into a rocks glass and garnish with orange and lemon wheel, top with cherry.

Oh how refreshing! and the tobacco liqueur together with chocolate and orange bitters is sooo goood….this drink is a serious treat and so good i decided to make another but with st Nicholas Abbey 12 yo rum and curacao bitters – i think it was even better! – heaven in a glass…i made three of them.

LOUISIANA RUM SOUR

0.75 oz Perique Tobacco Liqueur

0.75 oz dark rum – i used St Nicholas Abbey 12 yo

0.75 oz fresh lime juice

0.5 oz sugarcane syrup (Petit canne)

2 dashes chocolate bitters (Mozart)

2 dashes Curacao bitters (Master of Malt) or use orange bitters

Squeeze of egg white

Proceed as with the Louisiana Sour.

SMOKEY SIDECAR


1.5 oz Merlet Cognac

0.75 oz Merlet Triple Sec

1 oz Perique Tobacco Liqueur

0.5 oz fresh lemon juice

Garnish: orange peel

Shake all ingredients together over ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Spritz the orange peel over the drink before dropping into the glass.

This one surprised me…if the other drinks were refreshing in a fruity complex way this drink is much more masculine, a bit leather, a bit strong and very tasty! all three drinks are awesome, i hope you can try them!

More to come with Perique in a while.

Enjoy!

Jade Perique Liqueur de Tabac : Buy Online – The Whisky Exchange
www.thewhiskyexchange.com

 

Sugarcane bar

 

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ST NICHOLAS ABBEY 12 YEAR LIMITED RESERVE RUM

I stumbled over St Nicholas Abbey rum at the UK rumfest and out of all the new things i tried this is the rum that impressed me the most.

The one i`m gonna write about here is their 12 yo limited reserve rum which is a veritable explosion of flavors and so smooth….yet with a powerful punch. St Nicholas Abbey is a 350 year old plantation on the island of Barbados in the Caribbean with a rich and colorful history which you can read more about on their website.

They have a long traddition in producing rum and is one of the last surviving and intact 17th century plantations on the island. Initially R.L. Seale did help produce St Abbey´s first rums after the plantation was bought 2006 by the Warren family. They have chosen to avoid the mass production in favour of the traditional distillation process that has made rum from Barbados famous for more than 350 years.

What is interesting is that it´s not a molasses rum…it´s made from concentrated cane syrup that is double-distilled to about 92% prior to ageing. (traditional rhum agricole is usually distilled at 70-72%) At the UK rumfest i tasted a couple different agings – among them the 10 and the 12 yo plus the unaged and unlabeled rum they called the “see through” which isn`t sold commerically.

The unaged “see through” was made with estate grown cane, crushed in a traditional steam press and then made into cane honey and then fermented before a rough distillation in the pot column hybrid still. And then put through again and taken it off at 92% abv and cut with water to about 43%.

I have here their 12 yo dark rum in that stunning glass decanter and a sample of their unaged “see through” rum which is surprisingly smooth – very smooth actually and with a rich fruit and vanilla finish.

The “See Trough”

St Nicholas Abbey 12 yo

The 12 yo is so good that i am hesitant to mix with it but i`m gonna mix a cocktail nevertheless and it got to be a daiquiri since i don´t wanna destroy this fine rum with too many mixers and juices. It`s hand bottled unblended straight from the barrel in a glass decanter that is one of the awesomest i´ve seen with the great house, built in 1658 and palmtrees beautifully engraved on the glass.

The heavy decanter is sealed with a beautiful mahogany cork topped with hand-embossed leather, a symbol of the island’s first mahogany trees, that was planted 250 years ago on Cherry Tree Hill. And i find that cork very sturdy, something that i really like and which is necessary to keep the rum well closed in.

The label is applied by hand and each decanter is engraved with both a number and date. I really have nothing to complain about concerning this stunning decanter. They really have come up with some classy packaging!

The 12 yo rum won gold medal at the Ministry of Rum tasting competition in 2009 and the 10 yo won silver in the 2009 International Wine and Spirits competition.

Today the plantation also have a cottage industry producing a range of very interesting and pleasant condiments such as St Abbey Blackstrap Molasses, Pepper Rum, Gourmet Sugar and Hotpepper sauce which can be purchased at the plantation. That pepper rum, hot pepper sauce and black strap molasses….i feel like going straight to Barbados!

Before i make that daiquiri  i`m going to describe how i find the 12 yo rum in the nose and on the palate:

ST NICHOLAS ABBEY 12 yo Limited Reserve

NOSE:

I would describe the nose as warm, rich and fruity with a touch of spices, wood and caramel. It´s like it tells you – taste me…

ON THE PALATE:

Well here we go…this is a journey into the land of what a really great rum can be…and swirling the rum the many “rum-legs” makes the glass almost striped.

This is really good stuff. I find it difficult to describe flavors but what i find here is even harder to describe because it´s such an explosion of flavors completely filling your mouth, I find tropical dried fruits, caramel and oak, molasses, and spice.

It`s a veritable flavor attack actually, filled with fruits, warmth, dried leather and it got punch. I start to wonder how a Mai Tai with this would taste…hmmm…

But i`m not making one, i`m making a daiquiri instead. But really, this is a premium sipping rum and i`m not gonna use up my precious bottle for too many mixed drinks, i have other good rums for that. It also has a long finish as well leaving you warm and comfortable.

What i`d like to do is just sit back in an old leather couch sipping this while reading a good book – or relax on the porch in a rocking chair somewhere where it´s warm and tropical. This rum provides great flavor and comfort.

WITH ST NICHOLAS ABBEY RUM TRUFFLES:


I was provided with a little lagniappe (a New Orleans expression for that little extra) to go with the rum…their own rum truffles! these are some wonderful dark chocolate truffles made with St Nicholas sugarcane rum, cocoa butter and dark chocolate coverture dusted with very small ruby red glittering stardust…like a dust of microscopic stars…

Inside is a crunchy yumminess – which paired with the rum took the rum flavors in a different direction to a higher sweeter level ending with a very fruity finish.

Well this was a treatment indeed! leaving you feeling like a luxury queen:-) I like how they put attention to details from the beautiful engravings of the bottle to the thin stamped paper enclosing it inside the box – or the little golden truffles box with brown satin wrap with St Nicholas Abbey stamped in gold.

It´s all just beautiful.

FINAL IMPRESSION:

All i can say is that this is a exquisite aged rum, one of the best i´ve had. It´s full bodied, complex, flavorful and pleasant. You get a lot of good handcrafted old style rum here. I like the heavy beautiful glass bottle as well and it`s a rum with a colorful and rich history. My overall impression is that of a solid and very pleasant top shelf rum.

Finally, here´s a daiquiri with a demerara sugar syrup and fresh lime:

ST NICHOLAS DAIQUIRI


2 oz St Nicholas Abbey 12 yo rum

0.75 0z fresh lime juice

0.5 oz demerara syrup

Shake with ice and strain into a chilled coupe.

Garnish with a golden demerara sugar rim.

As i expected it makes a tasty daiquiri but i still think it should mostly be sipped.

Here´s a link to where you can find St Nicholas Abbey rum. Also the Whiskey-Exchange and the the Drinkshop has the 10 yo which also is outstanding.

 

Sugarcane bar

 

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UK RRRUMFEST!! Let it flow…

Let it flow, let it flow, let it flow! and flowed it did…rum here, rum there, rum everywhere – the UK Rumfest & Cane Spirits Festival is heaven for rum lovers and it shows people that rum is more than a spirit – it´s a lifestyle with a whole culture surrounding it.

The UK RumFest brings together the industry’s plethora of blenders, distillers, bartenders and mixologists, writers, bloggers, brand ambassadors, rum enthusiasts – all joining in to celebrate all things rum.

Here you get a chance to try out both new and old, known and unknown rums and many cocktails , tiki drinks and rum punches of course, (oh the rum punches…) listen to sessions, dance with tropical dancers, taste caribbean food, watch bartender competitions – all to the rhythms of the caribbean and in the company of people who have that one thing in common – they all love rum!

The UK Rumfest 2011 took place from friday to sunday oct 14-16 at the Kensington’s Olympia in London with the friday reserved for the Boutique Rumfest (for the trade with tastings and sessions.) Saturday was the official Rumfest starting day and i don´t think i´ve seen a crazier crowd before when it comes to a room being packed with rum-lovers.

Also it was the London Cocktail Week starting the week before with 3 days left when i came into town:-)

But back to the friday and Boutique Rumfest. There was of course lots of rum to be tasted and since it was a calmer event we also got a much better chance to meet and talk to the producers about their products.

There´s an incredible amount of rums to be tasted, especially on the two official rumfest days, and i wasn´t able to taste it all i´m sure! i think there was over 400 different rums from well known brands like Zacapa, Foursquare, Bacardi, Havana Club, Appleton, Cockspur, Mount Gay, Chairman´s Reserve etc to smaller unknown brands like Les Coliniéres.

And apart from the big brands i got to try some of the to me unknown rums and other rums i`ve never tried before. Some of my favorites among those i´d not tried before are st Nicholas Abbey from Barbados, a top notch fantastic rum! (a review of their 12 yo will follow)

And Les Colinières – from Mauritius – naturally infused, so called “rum/rhum arrangé” in the islands of Mauritius and La Réuinion. Their coffee and passionfruit rums were just amazing! and would be perfect in tiki drinks. As far as i know their rums is not yet sold outside of Mauritius..

Also Rumfire was new to me. That is a Jamaican overproof white rum from the Hampden Estate which in Jamaica is known for its full, intensely flavorful pot still rums sold in bulk. Today`s Rumfire that now is released to the public is yesterday´s JB rum which was on the black market. The Rumfire is like a smoother version of JWray overproof, it has hints of that flavor but it`s not as upfront. A very interesting and tasty rum.

They made me a daiquiri with it and that was a nice daiquiri indeed, this rum mixes wonderfully. Also it won silver medal at the Ministry of Rum Tasting competition this year.

Interesting but a bit odd was the Madagascar rum Dzama, it was quite good i think but i couldn´t be friends with the aftertaste which is what i found to be odd…so i have mixed feelings about this rum. An exotic bird…i wouldn´t mind taste the rums again and take more time.

Also i finally got to try out Elements 8 Spiced, which i found to be quite tasty.

New for 2011 rumfest was the Tropical Food Market which was an entire area downstairs devoted to tropical food and delicacies – that´s where i got my freshly cut coconut! – with rum in it of course…There was also a shop entirely dedicated to muscovado sugar…

Also there was sessions and masterclasses and the one´s i got a chance to attend first was the “Don`t Fear the Blender” with Beachbum Berry and then the El Dorado.

DON´T FEAR THE BLENDER


I`m a friend of the blender, let me tell you that first.With the blender you get that aerated frothy thing you cannot really get with a shaker plus it does good things at the same time for you – it mixes, chills, dillutes, creates a froth)

The blender was first used in Havana in the Floridita, dating back to 1817 when it was first opened as “La Piña de Plata” – The Silver Pineapple in the place it still occupies, in the corner of Obispo and Monserrate streets. It got it´s name “El Florida” a 100 years later. The bartenders used to use 11 drinks shakers and you can just imagine the work…so when the blender appeared it was like a lifesaver and now it became easier to serve the never ending hords at Floridita. At the time the ice for the daiquiris was shaved.

Then Don the Beachcomber started to use the Hamilton Beach blender and more would follow.The blender aerates and dillutes some of the crushed ice just enough to “wake-up” the spirit. Some drinks requires just a quick flash blending while other wants 15-30 sek. In the Bum´s books the exact time for the blending is always written out.

This session was a real pleasure to attend and i wish it could be a weekendly habit…but alas…or if i could at least live neighbour with the Bum! i would go and borrow sugar…errr…rum…um…a tiki drink…

We got some tasty blended drinks too of course and here are the Bum`s recipes:

LEI

15 ml fresh lime juice

15 ml peach brandy

30 ml white rum

15 ml (0.5 oz) honey-mix

6 oz crushed ice

Blend for 20 sek, frappé

DEVIL´S ISLAND DAIQUIRI

22.5 ml fresh lime juice

60 ml Chairman´s Reserve Rum

22.5 ml honey butter mix

120 ml crushed ice (0.5 cup)

Let the blender go for a long time, 20 sek. Fine strain into a bitter-sugar rimmed glass, gently pressing the liquids.

BITTER-SUGAR

Mix 4 tbsp demerara sugar with Fee´s aromatic bitters (4 big dashes)

HONEY BUTTER MIX

Unsalted butter and honey in equal proportions, heated up to dissolve the honey and melt hte butter, leave to room temp before using it.

Also you can make a delicious honey-butter-cream by using sugar, butter, heavy cream and honey.

The butter-honey-mix or cream mix gives a silky mouth feel to the drink that unless you already know – will never know what it is…

We also got some other nice drinks to imbibe like the always so tasty Missionary´s Downfall.

EL DORADO


I don´t think i need to present what this rum is, if you don´t know already go read my earlier post and check their website.

The session was hosted by Dave Broom (author of Rum) and Stefanie Holt, (El Dorado Global Brand Ambassador)

They took us through a journey to the land of many rivers, Guyana where the demerara rum is made. An interesting thing i learnt was that when the sugarcane fields are burnt a side effect is that the sugar in the cane is dissolved in the water that evaporates and thus makes the sugar content more concentrated and sweeter. The yeast is put in a molasses solution to get happy and multiply.

Further they spoke about the different stills and since i`m a DDL still geek i always find that interesting. What DDL does is simply to put as much Guyana as possible into the rum..

SATURDAY AND SUNDAY – RUMFEST!!


So saturday and sunday was the 2 days of Rumfest and these were 2 very intense days…rum tastings, cocktail and rum punches, tiki bartender of the year, sessions on rum, rum punch, rum, rum…and then the Golden Rum Barrel Awards.

This blog was one of four nominated “Rum Blog of the Year (Europe) and i`m very honored and wanna thank everyone who did vote for me. It didn´t make it all the way though..the prize was given to my good friends Peter and Pauline over at the Floating Rum Shack, who i think really deserved it! There was also four nominated blogs for the USA cathegory and the winner was Rumconnection.

All the awards you can read about at the bottom of this blog post.

Also there was the Tiki Bartender of the Year contest with the final on the sunday. There was 3 bartenders in the final and the winner was Mahiki`s head bartender Georgi.

What i particularly like about the Rumfest is that it is such a people thing, it´s relaxed and laid back with that caribbean feel spiced with quite a bit of tiki vibes, an environment i feel right at home in.

THE FOOD


Yes there´s food too! i did eat some real good Caribbean food at Ian`s restaurant Cotton´s – a place i really can recommend if you go to London! i had their famous Mixed Jerk Fish Grill – parrot fish, tilapia, snapper and tiger prawns served with fried plantain and rice & peas and it was lovely! Washed down with cold Carib and Blue Marlin beers.

 

Also the awards dinner was an amazing experience – the Caribbean style dinner with the Butterscotch Pumpkin Soup with Goat Cheese and Spiced Pumpkin Seeds was really tasty.

And then came the Coconut Crumbled Chicken with Sweet Potato mash and Sauteed Spinach…finished off with a Rum drenched fruit dessert, coffee and plain dark chocolate…hmmmm…

AND DRINKS…

Three bars in London i would recommend are Trailer Happiness, Montgomery Place and Callooh Callay – you can´t go wrong with any of them and if you go Trailer you`ll most likely see Damien fire up the roof.

To finish it off here´s a whole parade of various pictures to drool over and enjoy…:-)

Amazing Queens Park swizzle at the Montgomery Place


Something beautiful and tasty from Trailer Happiness…

The Zombie at Trailer Happiness.

And their fire show…putting the overproof rum soaked copper roof on fire…displaying all kinda colors, awesome!

It`s caribbean carnival at the UK Rumfest!

 

Cockspur Rum Punch

Foursquare got 3 awards…


Three charming rum smiles in the Plantation stand..if you go to Trailer Happiness they´ll make tasty drinks for ya!

Three happy rum people…(Stanislav Vadrna, Yours truly (Tiare) and Carl Kanto (chemist, distiller, El Dorado) i love this about events like this – the friends you meet both new and old.


I haven`t yet been able to figure out this nifty outfit….was it somebody´s outfit for the Golden Rum Barrel Awards? ( i think heard something…)

Les Colinières – rum arrangé from Mauritius

We could get fresh cut coconuts too…with rum in it!

St Nicholas Abbey from Barbados

Elements 8 Spiced

Black Tot Last Consignment sold by the Whiskey Exchange


 

In the Rum Frat House – it´s like the Mixohouse in New Orleans but with rum lovers.

Rum Punch with Kraken Black Spiced

Dzama from Madagascar

God for Tiki drinks..


 

No Rumfest without Ting…and with Banks Five Island it`s wonderful.

 

Like a lighter and smoother version (flavorwise) of the JWray overproof…but don`t let that deceive you – this rum is strong.


And here`s the original JWray and Ting! which was my corps reviver on the sunday…backed up with chocolate muffins.

Don Q Rum – good for a lot of things

Ian Burrell – the one and only – Global Rum Ambassador and founder of the UK Rumfest.


THE GOLDEN RUM BARREL OF THE YEAR 2011 WINNERS

Rum Distillery of the Year 2011

The Foursquare Distillery, Barbados

Rum Distiller of the Year 2011

Richard Seale (Four Square, Barbados)

Rum Blender of the Year 2011

Tito Cordero (Venezuela: Diplomatico)

Rum Blogger of the Year (Europe) 2011

The Floating Rum shack

Rum Blogger of the Year (The America’s) 2011

RumConnection.com

Rum Ambassador of the Year (UK) 2011 sponsored by Bar Life UK

Meimi Sanchez (Havana Club)

Rum Ambassador of the Year (International) 2011 sponsored by Drink International

David Cordoba (Bacardi Rum)
Jim Wrigley (Ron St.Teresa)

Best New Rum (Gold) 2011 sponsored by Coco Re’al

Abuelo Centuria, Panama

Best New Rum (White) 2011 sponsored by Coco Re’al

Banks 5 Island, Several Countries

Best New Rum Package 2011

Bacardi 1909

Boutique RumFest Award 2011 sponsored by Imbibe Magazine

Doorly’s XO Rum, Barbados

The Rum Experience Rum Pioneers Award

Joy Spence from Appleton Jamaica rum. The first female Rum master blender.
Ed Hamilton from the Ministry of rum. Founder of the pioneering web page and rum forum.

And last…

I wanna raise a toast of El Dorado 15 Year Old rum for George Robinson, the head man at the Diamond Distillery in Guyana who passed away just a little while before the UK Rumfest. A toast was also held at the Golden Rum Barrel Awards.

Can you have too much rum?

Sugarcane bar

 

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