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Old 03-16-2004, 07:52 PM   #1
ferdelance
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: outside Possum Kingdom SC
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The Rum Guide

i will be posting this in installments, a lot of the info you may alray know, but i have started at square one and working forward to the rums themselves, all reference material will be aded at the end of the show forgive spelling as i did my best to eliminate any, grammer is another mayyer,
Part 1
History of Rum and what it is

Rums history like that of so many other things in the New World — starts with Christopher Columbus. When the he arrived in the West Indies on his 2nd voyage, in 1493, he brought with him a plant that ended up changing dramaticaly the economy of the Caribbean and the drinking habits of both the Old and New Worlds. That plant of course was sugarcane.

Sugarcane is native to New Guinea but had already been established in the Canary Islands (where Columbus obtained his cuttings), sugarcane seemed to not only thrive in the hot, humid atmosphere of the Caribbean, but germinated vigorously and rapidly producing exceptional crops with a high sugar content. By the seventeenth century, sugar plantations had sprung up all over the area, and sugarcane had become one of the major cash crops. Caribbean colonists soon discovered that a by-product of the sugar-making process — molasses — could be fermented and then distilled into a heady and delicious alcoholic beverage.

There are a number of theories about the derivation of the word rum. It is most likely a shortened form of rumbullion, originally an English country slang term denoting an uproar. That word was being applied to rum as early as 1672, when one visitor to the Caribbean noted, "They make a sort of strong water they call Rumbullion, stronger than spirit of wine." Caribbean molasses was often brought north to pre-Revolutionary America and distilled into rum on the mainland. *

English ships carried rum from America to Britain, where it also became a favorite drink. Sailors were especially fond of rum because, unlike water and beer, it remained stable over the course of long sea voyages This naval-Rum connection introduced Rum to the outside world and by the late 17th century a thriving export trade developed. The British islands shipped Rum to Great Britain (where it replaced gin as the dominant spirit in the 18th century) and to the British colonies in North America where it became very popular. This export of Rum to North America, in exchange for New England lumber and dried cod (still a culinary staple in the Caribbean) soon changed over to the export of molasses to distilleries in New England. This was done in order to avoid laws from the British parliament, which protected British distillers by forbidding the trade in spirits directly between colonies. This law was, at best, honored in the breech, and smuggling soon became rampant.

. In order to discourage excessive onboard tippling, British navvies were given their ration of rum in the form of grog, a mixture of rum, water, and lime juice — most likely the world's first rum cocktail. Others would soon follow. Rum punch was an eighteenth-century libation made from rum, sugar, lime juice, spices, and water. And in 1896 an American living in Cuba made mixed-drink history when he served a cocktail of rum and lime juice to visiting friends. He named his creation after the nearby town of Daiquiri. *

Classifications of Rum

White Rums are generally light-bodied (although there are a few heavy-bodied White Rums in the French islands). They are usually clear and have a very subtle flavor profile. If they are aged in oak casks to create a smooth palate they are then usually filtered to remove any color. White Rums are primarily used as mixers and blend particularly well with fruit flavors.

Golden Rums, also known as Amber Rums, are generally medium-bodied. A darker color and a mellower taste are achieved by aging rum for six months to 25+ years in oak barrels that were previously used to age brandy, whiskey, or wine. These golden, or "oro," rums can be enjoyed alone over ice or used for hot rum drinks such as toddies.
this also includes blended golden rums that can be blended with anything from 2YO to 6YO generally

Dark Rums are traditionally full-bodied, rich, caramel-dominated Rums. The best are produced mostly from pot stills and frequently aged in oak casks for extended periods. The richest of these Rums are consumed straight up.

Spiced Rums can be white, golden, or dark Rums. They are infused with spices or fruit flavors. Rum punches (such as planter’s punch) are blends of Rum and fruit juices that are very popular in the Caribbean.

Añejo and Age-Dated Rums are aged Rums from different vintages or batches that are mixed together to insure a continuity of flavor in brands of Rum from year to year. Some aged Rums will give age statements stating the youngest Rum in the blend (e.g., 10-year-old Rum contains a blend of Rums that are at least 10 years old). A small number of French island Rums are Vintage Dated.


How rum is Made

Rum, and its fraternal twin, cane spirit, are made by distilling fermented sugar and water. This sugar comes from the sugar cane and is fermented from cane juice, concentrated cane juice, or molasses. Molasses is the sweet, sticky residue that remains after sugar cane juice is boiled and the crystallized sugar is extracted.

Most Rum is made from molasses. Molasses is over 50% sugar, but it also contains significant amounts of minerals and other trace elements, which can contribute to the final flavor.

Depending on the recipe, the "wash" (the cane juice, or molasses and water) is fermented, using either cultured yeast or airborne wild yeasts, for a period ranging from 24 hours for light Rums up to several weeks for heavy, full varieties.

Distillation of Rum

Rum is distilled in various types of stills, some are keot a secret. The choice of stills does, however, have a profound effect on the final character of Rum. All Rums come out of the still as clear, colorless spirits. Barrel aging (and the use of added caramel, in some cases) determine their final color. Since caramel is burnt sugar, it can be truthfully said that only natural coloring agents are used. Mpst high end Rums do not have to resort to this as the aging process adds the color naturally.

Lighter Rums are highly rectified (purified and blended) and are produced in column or continuous stills, after which they are usually charcoal-filtered and sometimes aged in old oak casks for a few months to add a degree of smoothness. Most light Rums have lite flavors and aroma, particularly those brands that have been charcoal-filtered. Heavier Rums are usually distilled in pot stills; similar to those used to produce Cognacs and Scotch whiskies. Pot stills are less "efficient" than column stills and some congeners (fusel oils and other flavor elements) are carried over with the alcohol. Some brands of Rum are made by blending pot and column distilled Rums in a manner similar to Armagnac production.

Classifications of Rum
White Rums are generally light-bodied (although there are a few heavy-bodied White Rums in the French islands and Cuba). They are usually clear and have a very subtle flavor profile. If they are aged in oak casks to create a smooth palate they are then usually filtered to remove any color. White Rums are primarily used as mixers and blend particularly well with fruit flavors.

Golden Rums, also known as Amber Rums, are generally medium-bodied. Most have spent several years aging in oak casks, which give them smooth, mellow palates.

Dark Rums are traditionally full-bodied, rich, caramel-dominated Rums. The best are produced mostly from pot stills and frequently aged in oak casks for extended periods. The richest of these Rums are consumed straight up.


Añejo and Age-Dated Rums are aged Rums from different vintages or batches that are mixed together to insure a continuity of flavor in brands of Rum from year to year. Some aged Rums will give age statements stating the youngest Rum in the blend (e.g., 10-year-old Rum contains a blend of Rums that are at least 10 years old). *
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