"Got Rum?" Magazine
June 2015- Rum in the News
Mike Kunetka shares with us in the 2015 June issue of "Got Rum?" magazine the most recent and noteworthy headlines in the rum industry.
June 2015- Rum in the News
by Mike Kunetka
NEW YORK WORLD WINE & SPIRITS COMPETITION
The 2015 New York World Wine & Spirits Competition is scheduled for September 2nd and 3rd at the Upper Crust in New York City. Last year’s Double Gold Medal Rums were Bacardi Facundo Exquisto, Twenty Boat Spiced Rum and The Real McCoy 12 Year old. Twenty Boat is from the small South Hollow Spirits Distillery in Cape Cod. Real McCoy also took Silver Medals for both their 3 Year and 5 Year Rums. Gold Medals in Rum went to Breckenridge Spiced Rum and Sebastiana Carvallo Cachaça.
Bacardi officially launched BACARDÍ® Gran Reserva Maestro de Ron, a new super premium mixing rum, at the 2015 James Beard Foundation Awards in Chicago in May. The much anticipated release reaffirms the company’s commitment to category leadership and achieving an extraordinary standard within the super-premium rum segment. Paying tribute to its rich history and heritage, BACARDÍ Gran Reserva Maestro de Ron is named after the Maestros de Ron (Master Blenders) that have safeguarded the secrets of the family’s rum-making process for more than 150 years. Inspired by the pursuit of creating the ultimate white mixing rum, BACARDÍ Gran Reserva Maestro de Ron is expertly crafted and double-aged using white oak casks that impart soft notes of oak, creating a spirit with a superbly smooth taste.
Bacardi is also releasing a new spiced rum in England called Carta Fuego. Bottled at 40% abv and red in color, the new release is made from rum aged for a minimum of one year in torched oak barrels, before it is passed through charcoal and mixed with a secret blend of flavors and spices. Named after the Spanish word for “fire”, Bacardi Carta Fuego is described as a “fiery” drink with a “bold, smooth taste” offering flavors of cinnamon, nutmeg, honey and vanilla, with a touch of smokiness.
YOU SAY HAVANISTA , I SAY HAVANA CLUB
Pernod Ricard announced the registration of the trademark Havanista® with the USTPO. Produced and bottled in Cuba, Havanista® is a premium Cuban rum specifically aimed at the U.S market, which will be launched if the embargo is lifted. Havanista® will be a celebration of Cuban taste and culture in a genuine Cuban rum. It will benefit from the same high-level production processes and quality requirements as the Havana Club range. Jérôme Cottin-Bizonne, CEO of Havana Club International, the joint-venture between Pernod Ricard and Corporación Cuba Ron, comments: “With Havanista®, if the embargo is lifted, we will be happy to bring the unique quality and taste of Cuban rum to U.S consumers.”He concludes: “If you like Havana Club – you will love Havanista®.
250 YEAR OLD RUM IN SUNKEN TREASURE
The wreck of the Lord Clive – which was destroyed by Spanish cannon fire during a botched attack on the city of Colonia del Sacramento – was discovered in 2004, but it was only this year that the Uruguayan government gave permission for the vessel to be recovered. Long buried under rocks at the bottom of the River Plate, the contents of the ship are unknown, but tales of treasure chests and vast stocks of rum have prompted a frenzy of interest, according to the veteran Argentinean explorer who found the ship and is now raising funds for the recovery.
KOLOA RUM COMPANY
Kōloa Rum Company announced that the company’s full portfolio of artisanal, single batch Hawaiian rum would be distributed by Young’s Market Company throughout the Hawaiian Islands which began May 11, 2015. Kōloa Rum Company’s partnership with Young’s Market Company in Hawai`i is the next phase in an expanded agreement naming Young’s as the brand’s exclusive distributor in ten U.S. markets. Currently, Young’s distributes Kōloa Rum products in California and Arizona. Within the next few months, Young’s will launch the authentic Hawaiian rum in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Utah and Wyoming. Kōloa Rum Company’s expanded agreement with Young’s Market Company includes representation of the full Kōloa Rum portfolio, including Kaua`i White, Gold, Dark, Spice and Coconut Rums and Kōloa Ready-to-Drink Mai Tai and Rum Punch cocktails. Bob Gunter, President and CEO of Kōloa Rum Company, said: “ Young’s Market Company is an outstanding company that has consistently delivered exceptional value and service to Kōloa Rum in California and Arizona over the past several years. Expanding our partnership with Young’s in Hawai`i and throughout their 10-state distribution footprint is a natural evolution in the ongoing growth and development of our brand. Our partnership with Young’s personifies the high degree of trust and confidence that we have in the leadership and capabilities of this dynamic organization.”
A colonial-themed craft distillery with costumed characters is set to begin producing rum in Virginia. Williamsburg Distillery, which focuses using historic ingredients and recipes from the 1600s and 1700s, has started to produce Yorktown Rum and following shortly with Williamsburg Bourbon and Jamestown Gin. The rum and gin are expected to be ready this summer, but the Bourbon is currently aging in charred white oak barrels and will take longer. The themed distillery is currently in a temporary location until the business invests in a larger facility. Eventually, Williamsburg Distillery will offer tours educating visitors about the local alcohol history and the traditional recipes distillers have used in the production process. Although they will use a new 100-gallon pot still to produce their products, the owners hope to set up a period-style working still to show visitors how the spirits would have been made in the colonial era.
BLACK CORAL RUM
Ben and his dad, Clint Etheridge, founded Black Coral Rum in the Royal Palm Beach area of South Florida. They did their research, managed to scrap together enough money to piece together the basic equipment, and set up shop in an industrial warehouse. They designed and built their brick-finished, copper and stainless steel pot still. Since then, they have worked tirelessly to master the still and perfect a unique process that produces a flavorful, smooth-drinking “original” white and spiced rum.
Rather than use sugar, Ben Etheridge sources Florida-grown sugarcane molasses for his rum. Not only does this support local agriculture, says Etheridge, but the plant matter helps retain more sugar during the distillation process — something that helps set his rum apart from many other mass-marketed rums.
From there, Etheridge distills Black Coral Rum in small batches, using all handcrafted, customfabricated equipment; ages it in charred white oak barrels; flavors the spiced rum with all-natural ingredients like Madagascar vanilla beans; and does it all without any artificial ingredients, thickening agents, or added sugar. In addition to making rums, The Etheridges are committed to supporting United States Veterans. They have based their business on the pledge that $1 from the sale of EVERY bottle of their Black Coral Rum goes towards U.S. Veterans organizations.
WORLD RUM AWARDS
The World Rum Awards are part of the World Drinks Awards Program, launched in 2007 with the World Whiskey Awards and the World Beer Awards. Presented by TheDrinksReport.com, the World Rum Awards select, reward and promote the best Rum Taste and Design to consumers and trade across the globe. This year’s top honors went to Pusser’s 15 Year Old for Best Dark Rum, Pusser’s 75% Overproof for Best Overproof Rum, Wild Geese Premium Rum for Best Gold Rum, Professor Cornelius Ampleforth Rumbullion! XO 15 Years Old for Best Spiced Rum, Beenleigh Australian Honey for Best Flavored Rum and Montanya Rum Platino for Best White Rum.