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Thursday, June 9, 2016

Aged Rum 101 and a Rum-Refashioned Carla Jun 09, 2016

Appleton Estate Rum and Lipstick | Haute CocktailI have to admit that I'm a fan of whiskey. No matter if you hand it to me on the rocks, with a splash of ginger ale or in a classic Old-Fashioned cocktail; I'm all over anything whiskey based. However, once upon a time, you would have heard me ordering a rum cocktail on any given Saturday night. The switch happened throughout years of exploring and trying new things… In other words, it's a story for another day. Today, I want to share with you the resurgence that dark rum is having in the bar scene, and how similar the paths to sipping perfection between whiskey and premium aged rums are.
Premium aged rums are able to match whiskey in complexity, flavor and versatility. In a lot of familiar cocktails, you can even exchange whiskey for dark rum, like in the Rum Re-Fashioned recipe I share below.  So, what are the similarities between dark rum and whiskey?
  • Aging: Like whiskey, dark rum is aged in wooden barrels. The wood, then, gives it delicious notes of caramel, vanilla and fruit while the time in the barrel ensures that the taste is smooth and mellow.
  • Quality Ingredients: While whiskey requires quality grains (rye, corn, wheat, etc.), rum uses first-rate sugar cane. For example, Appleton Estate Rums grow eight different varieties for a unique flavor profile.
  • Master's Touch: Both whiskey and rum are complex liquids that reqquire a keen nose and taste buds to blend each batch to the desired flavor. Whiskey has Master Distillers, while rum has Master Blenders.
  • Versatility: The sweetness of both rum and bourbon are delicious in cocktail recipes or on their own.  
Rum Re-Fashioned cocktail recipe | Haute Cocktail

Rum Re-Fashioned

2 oz. Appleton Estate Rare Blend 12 Year Old
.25 oz. Maple Syrup
Dash Dale DeGroff's Pimento Bitters
Orange/lemon Oil
2×2 Ice Cube
Add maple syrup, a dash of the bitters, and Appleton Estate Rare Blend 12 Year Old and gently stir to combine all ingredients. Gently add a 2×2 ice cube. Stir in the glass 20-30 times and garnish with the oil & peel of lemon and orange.

A lot of bars are bringing in new rum cocktails to their menus. You can also see a lot of Bar Rums sprouting all over the country, while a lot of tiki bars (which tend to have a pretty nice amount of rum-based cocktails) are also reinventing their offerings to be more sophisticated. You can check out Mother of Pearl (NYC), Pagan Idol (San Francisco), Rum Club (Portland) and Three Dots and a Dash (Chicago). Feel free to check out my guide to what to do and eat in Chicago, if planning a visit there.
Do you dare to sip dark rum like you sip your whiskey? Give it a try! I like to sip mine on the rocks or with a splash of ginger ale. Also, when drinking on the rocks, I love the sweet caramel-y flavor I get once a bit of the ice has melted in my Appleton Estate Rum. Get a bottle and let me know what you think of the experience on a comment. And if you are already an aged rum fan, share with me your favorite brands!
*Thank you Appleton Estate Rums for gifting me a bottle for me to enjoy and sharing all this great information with me. There was no further compensation for this post.* 

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