Surf’s up here in Southern California, and although we don’t condone drinking and shredding, there is definitely a time and place for everything. Slip off that wetsuit and dive in with us as we explore the rums we’ll be drinking this season and the next.
The heat is on in our corner of the world as summer approaches us like a runaway train, and the inclination to sip and savor under the sun, much like the temperature, is surely rising. As we shed a few layers at a time, our taste changes, or rather, the tastes we crave, and we’re starting to feel a hankering for something refreshing. When it comes to spirits, if a peaty Scotch whisky is to winter, rum is to summer—any and all types. Even if you’re not typically a fan of the good ol’ grog yourself, it is indisputable that an expertly crafted rum is easily one of the most interesting spirits in the world. On the other hand, if you are a rum drinker, lend us your ear…and your tastebuds. Whether you prefer the stuff straight or blended into a tropical medley and served in a tiki mug, you deserve to drink the best of the best—and no, that doesn’t have to mean breaking the bank for a little taste of luxury.
Plantation Rum Isle Of Fiji
This smooth sipper is perfect for when you feel the urge to put the lime in the coconut. Plantation is known for its approachable, yet complex and diverse range of flavor profiles among its vast assortment of rums. Much like Plantation Pineapple, this beauty calls for the most satisfying daiquiri, and with an explosion of tropical fruits such as banana and just a touch of vanilla on the palate, you’ll be adding this to your shopping list every week this year. Fijian rums may seem a bit niche or uncommon, but you’d be surprised at just how many different rums that hail from the heavenly island of Fiji adorn the shelves of your preferred liquor mart. This particular expression of this carefully crafted creation goes through a double maturation process where it is first aged in bourbon casks, then is sent on a journey overseas to the southwest of France for a second maturation in French oak casks, gracing your tastebuds with a tropical, yet sultry finish.
Notes: Exotic Fruits & Raisin Best for: Cocktails, Sipping
Chef Paul Menta and Key West First Legal Rum Distillery presents an artisanally crafted line of Key West rums that are the first of their kind since the prohibition era. Menta, who is easily one of the most interesting people in the world, (seriously, look this guy up), allows his culinary expertise to bleed proudly into the production of his rums, each of which is aged in salt-cured barrels. From aging and distilling, down to the sourcing of natural, local ingredients such as Florida Demerara sugar, you can taste The Keys in every sip. The legend of Spanish Marie was that she was a Rum Runner who smuggled high-proof rum from Cuba to Key West, hence Bad Bitch Spanish Marie Rum. It is said that she would cut her rum with a splash of red wine, so Bad Bitch is aged first in Burgundy and Bordeaux oak barrels, then into its salty final resting place. Deep and aromatic with notes of caramel, pepper, and stone fruit, we suggest pairing a glass of this with your favorite cigar and the brisk night air.
Fair Trade Certified Flor De Caña is a favorite among bartenders and aficionados alike due to its conscientious approach as well as its true duality of purity and flavor. When it comes to the 4 Year Extra Seco, meaning extra dry, make no judgment based on its low price point, for this floral, light-bodied rum is currently the winner of 10 international awards, including a Gold Medal at the 2017 International Rum Conference in Madrid. With hints of warm almond and orange blossoms followed by green apple and tobacco, this delicate beauty is a surefire way to step up your mojito game without bruising your wallet. Keep your eyes peeled for more on what’s in our glass in 2021!
Hailing from Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Ten To One has become a major player on the light rum scene. It finishes with subtle notes of honeysuckle jasmine, grass, and pepper. The blend contains no sugar, color, or added flavors. The blend is the best of both worlds as a pure still rum with a combination of Jamaican pot still rum. Ten To One takes great pride in how pure their offering is. , with a mission bringing high-quality rum at an affordable price that doesn’t attempt to cover up the natural state of the spirit. This white rum is best for craft cocktails, driven by herbaceous, fruity, and funky notes that combine elegantly to produce a smooth and clean finish, but also a rare light rum that we approve on the rocks with a twist of lime.
Notes: jasmine, honeysuckle, white pepper, and lemongrass Best for: Cocktails