Rum

19 Item(s)

  • Angostura 1824 Rum 40% 70cl
    Angostura 1824 Limited Reserve is a blend of the finest mature rums, hand-picked by the master blender from select casks. These rums are aged in charred American oak bourbon barrels for a minimum of 12 years and then skillfully hand-blended and re-casked. Upon the rum's optimum maturity it is han...
    £63.99
  • Angostura White Reserva Rum 40% 70cl
    ANGOSTURA LIGHT RUM A blend of light and heavy rums distilled in Angostura's five-column continuous still. The rum is aged in American oak Bourbon barrels between three and eight years. After aging the rum is twice filtered through charcoal to remove impurities and the golden colour it has acqui...
    £20.99
  • Caroni 100% Trinidad 21 Year Old Rum 57.2% 70cl
    A very rare 21 year old golden rum from Trinidad that's bottled at a strong 57.2% ABV. One per customer only.
    £204.50
  • Plantation Trinidad Rum 2003 42% 70cl
    This complex golden rum is a 2003 vintage release under the Plantation label. It takes rum from Trinidad and ages it for eight years in bourbon casks before shipping it to France where it spends a further four years in Pierre Ferrand barrels at the Chateau de Bonbonnet. The nose yield...
    £43.99
  • Angostura 7 years old Dark Rum 40% 70cl
    Angostura 7 years old rum is a blend of light and heavy rums distilled in Angostura's five-column continuous still. The rum is aged in American Oak Bourbon barrels for between seven and ten years. After ageing, the rum is lightly filtered through charcoal to remove impurities, but...
    £29.99
  • Angostura No.1 Cask Collection 40% 2nd Edition
    This is the second release of Angostura No.1 cask collection Rum. This one has been aged for 16 years, 10 years in American oak then a further 6 years in once used French oak casks. It has aromas of peach and candied apricot, nuts and a hint of oak. The taste has dried fruits with nuts and floral...
    £94.95
  • Caroni 1997 Bristol Classic Rum 61.5% 70cl
    This Caroni rum is distilled in Trinidad in their column still and is a classic example of a heavy rum. This has been bottled at cask strength to show the full flavour and style of this sadly departed distillery. Buy it before it is all gone.
    £138.99
  • Angostura 1787 15 years old Rum 40% 70cl
    This is a new edition from Angostura which has been aged for 15 years in oak casks. It is rich mahogany in colour with a sweet nose of ripe banana and dried fruits. The palate is well-balanced with dried prunes, sweet oak and touches of toffee with a l...
    £69.99
  • Butterfly Cane Spiced 35% 70cl
    Made with rum distilled by the Fernandes Family in Trinidad, Butterfly Spiced infuses rum with vanilla and a mix of spices to produce a smooth spirit showing vanilla, toffee, long and rich in the mouth with a spicy finish.
    £22.45
  • 19 Spiced Vanilla Rum 35% 70cl
    19 Spiced rum previously known as vat 19 spiced rum, distilled and blended by the world renowned Fernandes Distillers in Trinidad. It is a blend of the finest golden rum from Trinidad, enhanced with spices and a subtle hint of vanilla.
    £15.99

    Out of stock

  • Vat 19 rum 37.5% 70cl
    A premium Golden rum from Trinidad distilled from pure sugar cane, specially selected by the Fernandes family. Smooth and distinctive flavour. Named after the first blend of rum was distilled in 1919. It is aged for 3 years in oak barrels
    £16.75

    Out of stock

  • Mezan Trinidad 1991 Vintage Rum 40% 70cl
    This Trinidadian single vintage rum was distilled at the now closed Caroni distillery in September 1991. It has been aged in small oak casks for 19 years prior top being bottled in April 2011. Caroni was established in 1918 on the site of the old Caroni Sugar factory and operated ...
    £39.99

    Out of stock

  • Caroni 17 years old Extra Strong 55% 70cl
    This rum distillery was founded in 1923 and was world renowned for its Heavy rums. It closed in 2003 as the sugar cane production also closed. This 17 years old contains rum from the 1998 vintage and has been bottled at cask strength to perfectly capture the heavy still of this famous rum.
    £96.99

    Out of stock

  • Caroni 1998 Bristol Classic Rum 40% 70cl
    This collectable rum was distilled in 1998 and bottled in 2015 and comes from the now closed Caroni distillery on Trinidad. Caroni was one of a multitude of rum distilleries on Trinidad but sadly only one now remains in active operation. Caroni 1998 is golden in colour with f...
    £80.99

    Out of stock

  • St Abbs Six Spice Rum 40% 70cl
    This is a blend of aged rums up to 5 years old from Trinidad and filtered through charcoal. It is then blended with a secret mix of six spices and a some dark caramel. The result is a dark treacle coloured rum with a nose of West Indies spices and dark fruit cake. The palate has ginger, vanill...
    £30.99

    Out of stock

  • Angostura 1919 Rum 40% 70cl
    Angostura 1919 is an anejo made from a blend of light and heavy molasses-based rums aged for a minimum of 8 years in charred American oak bourbon barrels. Angostura 1919 rum possesses a rich, golden-amber hue with excellent clarity. The rum exudes a complex bouquet brimming over with aromas of co...
    £35.99

    Out of stock

  • Angostura 5 years old Golden Rum 40% 70cl
    Angostura 5 years old rum is a blend of light and heavy rums distilled in Angostura's five-column continuous still. The rum is aged in American Oak Bourbon barrels for between five and eight years. After ageing individually the rum is lightly filtered through charcoal to remove im...
    £25.99

    Out of stock

  • Bristol Black Spiced Rum 42% 70cl
    This is not your usual sweeten spiced rum, this is full on classic dark rum, with a lovely mixture of heady spices just like alcoholic christmas cake. At the recent rum fest this was given rave reviews from every one who tasted it. This is surley one of the hotest rums to hit the market success t...
    £36.99

    Out of stock

  • Plantation Original Dark Overproof Rum 73% 70cl
    The same rum as the Original Dark, but with additional flavours carried within the huge 73% abv alcohol. Incredibly soft for an overproof but rich in banana, caramel and spicy flavours this is the ultimate tiki cocktail rum. Incredible in Mai Tais. Try this rum in Mai Tais or clas...
    £36.75

    Out of stock

Rum Facts

Rum is a very popular spirit and has enjoyed a surge in popularity in recent years. Once viewed as the preserve of old salty sailors, a new generation has embraced this ancient spirit. As provenance and flavour have become more important to millennial's, rum has been allowed to show its varied styles to the masses once more. This was facilitated by the heightened interest in the cocktail scene and by some pretty aggressive marketing by brands like Captain Morgan's and Kraken. Here are some fun facts about rum;

  • Rum was discovered by slaves in Barbados sugar plantations during the 1620's. This makes it the oldest spirit and it is also the oldest branded spirit to be sold commercially.
  • It was the first spirit to be distilled purely for having fun and not for medicinal purposes.
  • Sailors during the 18th century were often paid in rum the lucky devils!
  • Ratings in the British Navy were allowed rations of rum each day until 31st of July 1970. This was known as 'Black Tot Day'. After this, beer was issued instead.
  • It was believed that rum helped prevent scurvy whereas, in fact, it was the lime juice that was drunk with it that helped stop it.
  • To test whether the rum had been watered down, sailors doused gunpowder in it. If it ignited, then it was of the correct strength. Hence the name Gunpowder Proof Rum.
  • Mount Gay Distillery on Barbados is the oldest rum brand in the world and has been going since 1703.
  • It has been known by many names including Kill-Devil, Nelson's Blood, Pirate's Grog, Rumbullion and Demon Water.
  • 80% of the world's rum is produced in Puerto Rico due to Bacardi having the world's largest distillery there and the vast amounts of sugar cane the country produces.
  • There are many distinctive styles of rum including dark, black, spiced, golden, white and Agricole. The colour comes from how long it spends in wooden casks.

Rum History

Unfortunately, rum has a dark history that is closely linked to colonialism and the slave trade. The all-important sugar cane grew naturally throughout Asia and China and it's believed that it was harvested and used for human consumption as early as 4000 BC. The first recorded mention of its use was in 1129 AD in an Indian text detailing its use in a fermented cane drink. In 1492 Christopher Columbus discovered the Caribbean Bahamas and it's here that the story of modern rum begins. Soon after this, South America was discovered and the gates to the New World had been opened. What followed over the next century was several ground-breaking voyages that made it possible for Europeans to travel the globe with relative ease.

By the beginning of the 1600's, trade was swiftly becoming the key to be a global superpower. The old Islamic cultures of the world were waning in strength whilst Christian Europe was in ascendancy. The main European players, namely Holland, England, Portugal, Spain and France, formed huge merchant companies that plied their trade on the new frontiers of the West Indies and East Indies. The Spanish initially had a foot hold the Bahamas thanks to Columbus, but it wasn't long until they were muscled out by the might of the English and Dutch.

The first sugar cane plantations were constructed in Brazil in 1520 and they spread to Jamaica and Cuba by 1595. The Portuguese used slaves from Africa to work the plantations as they were used to the heat and less likely to escape than indigenous slaves. Soon the British, French and Spanish were also purchasing slaves from Arab and African traders and a truly despicable trade was established. This abhorrent practice spawned a market that was hugely profitable and countless individuals were traded like cattle. It was however, the slave population that was responsible for the creation of rum as we know it today.

The earliest recording of sugarcane distillate was in 1552. It was reported that the slaves were more co-operative if they could imbibe cachaca, a spirit made from unprocessed cane juice. This was in a report from a Brazilian Governor and cachaca is still Brazil's national drink. Nowadays it's commonly used to make a cocktail called a Caipirinha. Back then it was popular among the slaves as it was easy to make and there was an abundance of sugar cane to work with. We suppose that being constantly intoxicated was certainly preferable to the harsh reality of life as a slave. Whilst cachaca is technically a type of rum, today the classification states that rum is made using molasses, the by-product of crystal sugar production.

The First Molasses Rum

There's sound historical evidence that the first molasses-based rum was produced by Pietr Blower on Barbados in 1637. He was a Dutchman who had come from the plantations of Brazil to settle in a new British colony on the island. He came prepared with seeds to grow sugar cane and a pot still required for distillation. With previous attempts to grow plants for valuable dye a failure, the residents of Barbados turned to producing sugar for export. Pieter encouraged the slaves to save the molasses and distil them into rum. By 1651 rum was being widely consumed on Barbados.

It was a comparable situation on the French island of Martinique and Cuba, with records of molasses distillation being recorded around the same time. With the sugar plantations being in operation since the previous century, it wouldn't be surprising if someone had already distilled a rum before this. This spirit, still regarded as the tipple of slaves and brigands, was never actually called rum. Instead, it was given monikers such as Kill-Devil, Barbados Liquor and Devil Water. The first printed example of the name wasn't until 1751 in a French Encyclopaedia of Sciences and Art.

Rum, Sailors and Trade

Rum and sailors have a long and well documented relationship and the first rum rations were given to British mariners in 1655. This was under the orders of Vice Admiral William Penn after he captured Jamaica from the Spanish. Sugar cane spirit was being produced there and, with the beer rations already well depleted, he started a tradition that would remain with the British Navy until 1970. Rum was the go to drink for both privateers and pirates that plied their trade around the Caribbean and this didn't help its reputation as a drink for rogues. There wasn't really any difference between a pirate and privateer back then, just the flag that you sailed under.

By the beginning of the 18th century, Britain was getting rich from rum. That and molasses were the biggest source of trade income for the UK and the most profitable commodities to come from the West Indies. The molasses from the Caribbean was traded to the American colonies for rum. More rum was then distilled and exported to Africa in exchange for more slaves to work the Caribbean plantations. This was known as the Trade Triangle and it made merchants very rich indeed.

Due to the vast amounts of money being made trading slaves and rum, the British were ashamedly the last of the European powers to abolish slavery in 1833, some thirty five years after the French. Despite this, Britain still retained a monopoly on rum production and trade. Eventually, dedicated rum distilleries started being developed and the spirit was no longer just something that was a by-product of the sugar trade.

How Rum Is Made

As you have probably gathered by now, rum is made by distilling the molasses that come from making sugar crystals. It might surprise you to know that sugar cane is still harvested by hand in many parts of the world. This is extremely physical work that requires a sharp machete and a strong back. Once the cane has been cut, it's transported to the plant where it's crushed in a large machine. The precious juice is collected and the waste pulp is either discarded or burnt as a fuel for heating the stills.

Once the juice has been collected, it's then made into sugar crystals which leaves the molasses behind. The sugar will be sold and the molasses taken on to the next stage of distillation. This is when the molasses is fermented and is by far and away the most common method of making rum today. Other methods include fermenting and distilling the pure sugar cane juice; this is how Brazilian cachaca is made.

The fermentation process can be undertaken in a variety of ways. The simplest and most natural method is leaving the molasses in an open vat and letting natural yeasts react naturally with them. On the other end of the spectrum, some distilleries use state of the art equipment and scientific apparatus to complete the process. Most modern distilleries fall somewhere between these extremes and often add the yeast that they want whilst ensuring environmental issues are kept optimal. The fermentation process can be as short as half a day or take weeks to complete.

With the fermenting done, it's now time for the exciting stage of distillation, where the fermented molasses are placed into a still. The still is then heated, releasing the alcohol from the liquid in vapour form which is then re-condensed and collected. What's left over is the pure spirit. Sounds simple right? Unfortunately, there are a multitude of factors that can affect this process and it takes time, dedication and skill to become a master distiller. Another crucial factor is the stills themselves which are either copper pot stills or continuous stills. Every still is handmade and unique, with some being extremely simple whilst others have complex features that allow various parts of the rum to be separated. Each still has its own quirks and secrets that only practice and patience will reveal. Between the Master Distiller and the still used, each rum is unique and its character is determined by the aforementioned factors.

After the distillation process is complete, the rum is run off and collected. It's usual for this to be blended with other rum from the distillery and watered down to around 40% ABV. Some rums are bottled straight after distillation and sold as are, especially for the Caribbean market. Others are aged in wood casks, dramatically altering their flavour profile. Some have various spices, fruits or other juices added either before or after maturation. As you can imagine, this leads to a huge possible range of flavour profiles in the finished product.