Cocktails & Spirits

Papa's Pilar Launches Rum With a Mystery Cruise to Stiltsville

When you name your rum after one of the most iconic authors in the world, you'd better be prepared to live up to that name.

Papa's Pilar, the first spirit licensed by the Hemingway family and named after Ernest Hemingway's boat, Pilar, is going all out with the concept of adventure. These rums, available in a dark and blonde, are sold in canteen-shaped bottles, complete with compass rose and cork attached by a chain (perfect for the rum drinker on safari or fishing for sailfish -- a la Hemingway).

Read Also: Miami Rum Renaissance Festival: Ten Rums You Probably Haven't Tried Yet

Both spirits are made from premium molasses-based rums carefully curated from distilleries throughout the Caribbean, Florida and Central America, then blended and aged in Spanish sherry casks. The rums are available now and retail for about $40 a bottle.

How to launch such a "spirited" spirit?

"Arrive at Dinner Key, ready for adventure", an invitation stated. And so, a group of about two dozen thirsty people hopped aboard a boat for points unknown. After a 90 minute ride (in which we all got properly sea-sprayed), we realized our destination - Stiltsville, the group of wooden houses that most Miamians have seen, but few have visited.

Of course, Stiltsville would be the perfect setting for a Hemingway-inspired rum party. After all, legend states that Stiltsville originated as an off-shore place to gamble.

Once at Stiltsville, guests were treated to fresh conch salad, prepared to order by a chef with mad knife skills.

Hand crafted cocktails showcased both the dark and blond Papa's Pilar rum. Some were classic libations, like (of, course) the Hemingway Daiquiri.

The spirit of Hemingway -- literally and figuratively -- was at the party.

Of course, there are always a few gate crashers that can find their way to even the most secret of locations.

Rum in hand, breeze in your hair, this could be the best way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

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Laine Doss is the food and spirits editor for Miami New Times. She has been featured on Cooking Channel's Eat Street and Food Network's Great Food Truck Race. She won an Alternative Weekly award for her feature about what it's like to wait tables.
Contact: Laine Doss