Rhum arangé is a speciality of the French islands, so most of them are made with rhum agricole but there´s also some people doing it with molasses rums. Benoît Bail – the maker of Zwazo uses a blend of both styles to get this particular taste and the blend is of 3 different rums from Martinique Trinidad and Guyana.
So what i have here is a rhum arrangè that is a special mix between agricole and molasses rums, pineapple and vanilla. The difference between a spiced rum ( “rhum épicé “) and rhum arrangè (arranged rum:-) is that rhum arrangé also contains fruits or just fruits. And rhum arrangé is a sexier name than rhum épicé, don`t you think?
It`s quite low in ABV, 25% – because it`s made especially for the persons who don’t like rums or don’t know them or even don’t drink strong alcohol for example people who like sweet fruity tastes without a strong alcohol taste.
And that`s also a great way to introduce rum to non rum lovers isn`t it?! and i can vouch for that this rum here tastes fantastic!
Benoît uses only organic seasonal fruits so the flavors available will vary throughout the year and since this is a highly artisanal product there´s limited quantity.
The two first Zwazo rums made by Benoit was this pineapple/vanilla and a banana/vanilla which i hope to try sometimes. New flavors are coming up in february!
At the beginning Benoît was just doing some rhums arrangés at home for himself, friends and family but with the time they began calling him to ask if he wouldn’t sell some because they would need some for friends or at barbecues.
So Benoît got the idea to make business with it and build his own brand and people much appreciated the idea and the taste of his flavoured rums – so he began making a business plan and looking for funds and now one and a half year later Zwazo is here!
And now i`m tasting this delicious Pineapple and vanilla rhum arrangè and all can say is that i`m really impressed because this rum is lovely!
I prefer to drink it neat with ice but it can be used mixed as well and one way to mix it is making a Ti Punch, either with just Zwazo or mixed with another white rhum agricole to boost up the alcohol punch.
It would be a waste to use it in drinks like the Zombie that contains a lot of other rums and mixers because it´s flavor is quite delicate and it would be a shame to mask it with other things. But i could do well in tiki drinks with just a few ingredients in them, and i can see it shine in a daiquiri for example or mixed with champagne.
The bottle is pretty, it looks very exotic with the pineapple chunks and vanilla beans inside and the tropical looking label and exotic name – Zwazo means bird in french creole. The bird Benoit first had in mind was the Toucan but then the rhum Toucan came out from french Guyana and so they switched to another Caribbean bird – the Hummingbird…
On the nose it smells of ripe tropical fruits, vanilla and pineapple and you are transported to a tropical island…
The taste is sweet with mature tropical fruit, a bit like burnt sugar and pineapple or roast pineapple maybe, with hints of apricot. Slight notes of agricole rum that gives a freshness to the blend paired with a hint of sexy vanilla…
And once the bottle is empty you can also take out the fruits inside and eat them or make jam with it, or put them in cakes.
It`s such a perfect rum when you want to be on the light side, make a wonderful summer drink – or on the contrary – something to escape the winter with.
I love it!
I made a simple Ti Punch with 2 oz Zwazo, the juice of 1/3 piece of the lime and 0.5 oz sugarcane syrup, stirred together with some ice.
As for now you can get Zwazo rums from one of the best rum shops in Europe – Christian de Montaguèrein Paris. If you can`t go there he might send it, mail and ask. They sell for for 25€.