The eighth-annual Rum Renaissance Festival was filled with pirates, tiki aficionados, and the titular libation.
The spirit, which conjures visions of white-sand beaches and swaying palm trees, is distilled anywhere sugar is grown, which makes it the most universally loved liquid in the world. This year's festival set out to prove that fine rums can be found all over the world — from the far reaches of India to right here in South Florida.
The best part of the yearly fest is the ability to sample new
5. Puerto Angel
Oaxaca is the tequila capital of the world. This southwestern Mexican city grows two dozen species of agave. So it's only natural that its master distillers can also turn out a fine rum. Puerto Angel is an organic rum made from local sugar cane for a crisp, grassy sweetness. The
4. Bahama Blue
Bahama Blue is the easiest (and most literal) way to drink in the amazing color of Bahamian waters. This rum, actually from Naples, Florida, is made with Brazilian GMO-free sugar cane and Rocky Mountain water. The spirit is distilled three times, and the distillery even recycles the crushed sugar cane. The spirit makes a great blue martini. Alas, right now it's available only at liquor stores and restaurants on Florida's west coast, but that may change soon. For now, if you're find yourself on the southwest side of the state, pick up a few bottles for your next pool party.
If you ever wanted proof that computers are taking over the planet, just look to Santería — rum, that is. This one, made by Rational Spirits in Charleston, South Carolina, is made by Tessa, which, by the way, is a computer. The rum is a dunder pit-style rum, but computer models run the bacterial strains and also age the rum in a matter of days instead of the usual years. How does technology taste? The result is a dark, edgy
2. Doc Brown's Really Bad Rum
Here's a little clarification: This rum is actually good. What's bad is how you act after you've had a few, according to owner Lee Brown, who wears a lab coat in keeping with the spirit's doctor/mad-scientist theme. Doc Brown's comes in silver and spiced, but it's the dark rum that's worth adding to your collection. Aged in oak casks, this variety has lots of spice and vanilla notes and does double-duty as a drizzle over ice cream for a decadent dessert (as served by "shot" girls at the fest). The company is awaiting Miami distribution, and the rum should be in stores in a few weeks. For now, order rum cakes and barbecue sauce at reallybadrum.com.
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