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A fascinating review of rum which was available at The Spirit Journal web site was titled Rhum's the Word for 2006, 2007...  Unfortunately, the highest recommended rums are very difficult (if not impossible) to find in Florida:  rums from Trinidad (10 Cane Rum) and Martinique (Chauffe Coeur, La Favorite, and Neisson).  They appear to be available primarily in California, New Jersey, and New York (In Manhattan, 10 Cane, La Favorite and Neisson products can be found at Astor Wines & Spirits).  Of course, if you are taking a Caribbean cruise from Florida, you may be able to locate these rums if you get to Trinidad and Martinique.  The Caribbean Spirits web site indicates that La Favorite and Neisson rums will be available in the future in Florida.     

We also like the information found on The Ministry of Rum web site where there is a Rum Locator feature.  Be sure to check that site's recommendations if you are taking a Caribbean cruise. 

In Central Florida the best rum selections can be found at Total Wine & More, Knightly Spirits, ABC Fine Wine & Spirits, and Pat's Liquor Leaf and Wine.  At Knightly Spirits, you will find Barritt's Bermuda Ginger Beer (which is generally hard-to-find) on the shelf next to Gosling's Black Seal Bermuda rum.  This makes it easy to make your own Dark and Stormy (a wonderful rum drink that is served in Bermuda).  A Mai Tai made from scratch (no mix) is a surprisingly good drink and is as good as a Margarita made from scratch.

Dark and Stormy recipe:

1½ ounces Gosling's Black Seal rum
4 to 6 ounces ginger beer (Barritt's or Regatta from Bermuda or a non-Jamaican style ginger beer)

Build on ice in a highball glass.

Mai Tai recipe:

1 ounce Jamaica dark rum (Appleton Estate Extra or Reserve or Myers’s Original Dark)
1 ounce Martinique gold rum (St. James Royal Ambre or Neisson Reserve Speciale)
½ ounce orange curacao
½ ounce orgeat syrup
¼ ounce agave nectar or sugar syrup
juice of 1 lime (key lime or persian lime)

Shake with ice (5 large cubes or 10 small cubes) and pour into an Old-Fashioned glass.

We have seen orgeat syrup, which has an almond flavor, at Knightly Spirits and Pat's Liquor Leaf & Wine.  You will not find it at Total Wine & More.

An interesting question is what dark rum to use.  We have tried several and have our favorites.  We especially like Doorly's XO Fine Old Barbados Rum (only $19.99 at Total Wine & More).  Although Gosling's Black Seal rum works well in the Dark and Stormy, we did not like it in a Mai Tai.  For a more sophisticated drink, Ron Zacapa Centenario 23 Yr. Old rum is a charm.  We wouldn't use such a fine rum in a Mai Tai made from a mix (actually we would never make a Mai Tai using a mix!), but it works well in this Mai Tai recipe which is made from scratch and in which rum is the dominant ingredient.  Lately we have graduated to using two rums for a more authentic (and better tasting) Mai Tai with a Jamaican dark rum and a Martinique gold or dark rum.  An interesting online recipe is the $100 Mai Tai (for 25 drinks).


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This page last modified on 02/21/12