Friday, July 31, 2015

Rumtime = Summertime!


Its real summer here and cooling Rum drinks abound.... I am going to throw a wrench into it and post a recipe for Rum – “non” drink... Stay tuned till later this post.
Speaking of Rum drink recipes, in last blog I mentioned finding substitutes of the Rums used so long ago and what we have now. I got a few drink recipes from distillers featuring their fine rums but want to comment. I guess what I need is overproof rums. It seems most of the recipes are looking for 140+ proof rums as these were what they carried in cask on ship board and for trade. Once at a destination they'd be proofed. As always – no one wants to transport water, so it made sense. However the sailors (yeah and pirates) drank the rum starting at that overproof rating. So that is the suggestions I need – over proof rums....

Its late but I am sure it will be repeated, A moonshine and whiskey distillation class was offered, I hope it will be repeated in the future – and I hope they include a Rum Class as well!

50% OFF the Ultimate Moonshine & Whiskey Distillation Class

September 26th & 27th in Charleston, SC

Join the distillers from Striped Pig Distillery and Mitch Abate from Downslope Distillery in Colorado, for the ultimate moonshine and whiskey making workshop. The distillers will cover all aspects of making corn liquor, what it takes to make a distillery succeed and answer any and all of your questions!
Only 10 spots available - Lunch will be provided.NEW LOW PRICE OF $750 - $500 deposit, the rest will be collected day of class


I will be in the North Woods over the next week so you may not hear from me much (perhaps a short post or two via my smart phone). We will be on our nearly annual trip to
Traverse City. Yes plenty pf distilleries to visit – re-visit and sample. We will report back.

As I continue to read RUM by Charles Coulombe, I gather recipes for drinks and food. I have post a couple of drinks and hope you tried them. Today I want to post a Recipe for …........... Baked Beans!!! Yes the colonists staple – actually sounds really good. I am not a fan of what often passes for BB, but this reads like it has some stand out flavor so I may give it a try!





SPICY BAKED BEANS
WITH RUM & MOLASSES


2 cups raw pea (Navy) beans

3 Tbsp butter

2 cup chopped onion

3 cloves crushed garlic

¾ tsp dill weed

1 tsp allspice

lots of fresh black pepper

4 Tbsp dark mustard (Dijon-Poupon)

4 Tbsp dark molasses

3 cups tomato juice

¾ cup dark rum

2 tsp Tamari (or soy sauce)

1 cup water

2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1-2 diced carrots

1-2 stalks diced celery

1 chopped bell pepper

1 tsp fresh grated ginger


Place beans in a kettle of water (enough to cover beans with water). Bring to a boil then partially cover and cook over med heat until tender 1-1.5 hrs usually. Keep water level up to cover beans while they cook adding if necessary. When tender drain.
As beans are cooking add the spices all the measured liquids to the onions and simmer, covered for about 45 min – low and slow.
Preheat oven to 300. Combine the cooked beans, the sauce and the raw chopped vegetables into a large casserole. Cover tightly and bake for an hour or two.
Serve topped with sour cream, a green salad and cornbread.

Gotta tell you made me hungry just typing all that!

So, Till next time – take your rum seriously and.... Lick the glass!




Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Rum School - The Quest for Knowledge

I have recently noticed a few offers like this out in the webs. I have to say I am intrigued. If I were in the Distillation business or seriously moving toward that goal - I'd sign up in a minute.
Think they'd offer a HUGE discount for Rick the Rum Runner to "Audit" the class - just to report??



5-Day Rum Training
October 5th - 9th, 2015
  Louisville, Kentucky, USA 
  
The Rum University and Moonshine University join forces again this year to offer the most comprehensive rum training to existing and future rum distillers and brand owners from around the world.
The 5-day course will guide attendees through the financial, marketing, production, aging and blending of rum, so each person can leave with a complete understanding of how rums can fit into the economic landscape. The course will offer a great combination of theory and practice, making it the ideal learning tool for anyone whose livelihood will depend on their ability to properly produce and commercialize excellent rums.


In other news, we find our re-posting on Liquor.com - DrinkWire is reaching an ever-growing audience. I see many many hits coming from that source and have had blogs listed as "Most Read" and "Most Popular" there a few time. Here is what they have to say about it all:

Liquor.com Now Reaches 1 Million Email Subscribers

San Francisco, CA (July 13, 2015) -- Liquor.com, the world’s largest cocktails–and–spirits-oriented publication, now reaches more than one million email subscribers.

Since last year (July 2014), the company’s email subscriptions have grown 180% to more than one million subscribers, solidifying Liquor.com’s standing as the largest lifestyle publisher with a focus on beverage alcohol. As part of that email subscriber list, Liquor.com also reaches more than 30,000 professional bartenders each month.

"We are thrilled about the significant audience growth we have seen over the last 12 months. During that same time period, Liquor.com has also nearly tripled its audience reach organically, with email subscribers as a core focus,” says Kit Codik, Liquor.com founder and CEO. "Reaching more than one million discerning drinkers by email is quite an achievement for us, as email remains a crucial channel for audience engagement and retention."

Liquor.com also anticipates continued audience growth. 10,000 to 20,000 new email subscribers join Liquor.com each week, receiving the company’s award-winning content in their in boxes five days a week.

Currently, Liquor.com reaches and engages 3.5 to 4 million drinking consumers a month across its various digital channels, including website traffic, email subscribers and social media followings. In total, more than 22 million drinkers are reached annually by Liquor.com.

 


I am very proud of RTRR's association with DrinkWire. A lot of growth here is from readers there coming over and following us here and keeping up. If your spirit interests go beyond Rum, try Drinkwire.com.

In the reading department -- Still into RUM -- and find many really interesting recipes included -- even a great looking baked bean one that uses good - hard Rum in it. 
Now, while we report on American Made Rums and follow those Distillers that craft it -- We know there are fantastic rums world-wide. That said, in some of these recipes certain brands of Rum are called for. We will include those but I will try to include suggestions for some of them that are made here.

Have a great week!! 
 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Rum - Rick's Current Read


I am well into my next book on Rum. This is a very interesting complete history of Rum. I am in to about 1/3 the way and already, Rum: The Epic Story of the Drink that Conquered the World [Charles A Coulombe - Citadel Press], has me mesmerized. 
While Sugar told us of the history of sugar and how that gave birth top the Age of Sugar as well as Rum itself. It also chronicles the growth and proliferation of slavery not just in the USA but across the world, the sugar industry being the biggest user of free, forced labor. Rum: The Epic Story of the Drink that Conquered the World zero's in on Rum, it's birth growth and many of the reasons we think of it as a spirit, even today. Even its responsibility towards making certain words and phrases we use almost daily, like limey, Scuttlebutt and grog.

When British Sailors drank their daily ration of rum, it was "neat" in the beginning. Since rum was not cut to proof it - it varied in the 140-160 proof region. Needless to say the 1/2 pint drunk at once was a shock to the system, and most likely lead to many on ship accidents. They learned to mix it with water and even add lime and/or lemon juice as well as sugar. So now you had the start of a "Punch" that was 4 oz Rum with a quart of water or water-mix of lemon and lime juice as well as a measure of sugar. Rum Punches became a popular drink (Still is) the first and one most "Official" is the:
Mount Gay Rum Punch
Barbados Recipe
750 milliliter Mount Gay Eclipse Barbados Rum
20 oz lime juice
26 oz simple syrup
3 oz angostora bitters
1 ox nutmeg
40 oz water
Mix that and serve and you approximate the same drink enjoyed by many British sailors -- The daily ration would be about 40 oz of that mixture... just a quart and 8 ounces. 

I will keep you all apprised of it all as I go and do a complete report when finished. 






Friday, July 10, 2015

Mid-Summer Rum Distillery Finds

Business as usual: We are grateful to fans, customers and Distillers themselves that make us aware of new places that make and offer Rum for sale in these United States of America. 




Some of those places are: [All names are Website links - Any other links are included in the story]

Smokey Quartz Distillery
Beyond the fact that they are "Veteran Owned & Operated" I too am at the beginnings of find out more about them. Here's what we know from their website:
They are in Seabrook New Hampshire -- Love those East Coast Distillers!
They only offer a Vodka. Now at their Facebook page they show Granite Lightning Moonshine, A Bourbon, also a Granite Coast Rum... Also their Facebook link. We will be following up this blog with a contact mail sent to them for more!



Blackwater Distilling
I may have mentioned this one before. They are in Annapolis Maryland and are launching a
rum! Here is their Facebook link.
Here are some details on the launch:

Annapolis Rum Launch Party 

"Summer months are rum months, and we're following up our Baltimore launch party for Picaroon Maryland Rum in June (thanks to everyone who came out to celebrate and taste the rums!) with an Annapolis launch party at Paladar Latin Kitchen on July 16 from 6-9pm. We'll be pouring free samples of our white and gold rums and giving away t-shirts and shot glasses, and there will be drink specials at the bar. You'll also get to meet and chat up the Blackwater Distilling team. If you can make it, please RSVP here to help us get a headcount. Please note that these "reservations" are just to help us prepare, and if you'd like to reserve a table at Paladar for dinner, we recommend making a reservation with the restaurant."

We will follow up with details as we get them!



Yolo Rum
Appears to be out of Denver, Colorado. They have a Facebook page. Here is a bit from their website:

You Only Live Once… Don’t waste your time on other rum! Drink the best!
Learn all about Yolo Rum’s rich history, special process, sustainability efforts, brand founders and prestigious awards
- Francisco “Don Pancho” Fernandez.

Follow up in progress..

 

Finally I have Lassiter Distilling. 

As always things are changing -- we will be back with More!! Until then - I remain:
 

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Sugar Changed the World - an Account

So I have wrapped up the first book, Sugar Changed The World. I have to admit it was very interesting from a both a Rum related viewpoint as well as a Historic viewpoint. The History can be summed up by saying, Sugar, once the refining methods were discovered, rapidly brought the Age of Honey to an end. Sugar, was labor intensive to produce but slave labor was often employed to keep those costs to a minimum. There is no doubt that Sugar contributed in a great deal to slavery, not only in the US, but England and France as well. In fact those two countries had more slavery in the sugar industry than the states, partially because we were not the USA during a large part of the Sugar age beginnings.
The colonies of England (later to be the US) mostly used molasses manufactured (as a by-product) in the Caribbean islands to both be used as a table sweetener (like honey or jellies or jams) and a few other minor uses and as the basis to make..... Rum.
It's interesting to note that the "Taxation without representation..!" cry of the Colonists was for all the taxes levied upon the New World by the Crown. The major ones though were the Tea Tax and the Sugar (read Molasses) Tax. we read in our History books about the Boston Tea Party, but are not told that just the night before -- hundreds of barrels of Molasses were stolen from a ship in Boston harbor. The value much higher than the Tea.
It seems that the "Black Gold" was taken to be spirited away to a distiller(s) who would make it into Rum. In my mind we heard little or none of this because of the theft being a bit harder to justify than the symbolic ruination of a Tea cargo. However, let be known that the tax on Sugar/Molasses to be used to make Rum was also heavily taxed if made here but lighter if the raw material was shipped to English Distillers. Of course - Re-Taxed as bottled rum when sold here. So, if you wanted to drink American Made Rum back then it went through some horrific taxes both as a raw material and a finished product. Still there was no member of the Parliament that represented the Colonies of North America.
The French grew Sugar Cane both in the Caribbean and on North American soil. What we call Louisiana and part of the Southern Coast States as far east as Florida and west as Texas also grew some of the sugar bearing plant. Their slaves were therefore also on what would become The Louisiana Purchase when France needed to pay its bills for war with England (they call it the 100 Year War - part of which was fought in the US as - The French and Indian War). That under our 3rd President, Thomas Jefferson in 1802.
So it must be pointed out that Molasses, was involved deeply with the founding and the enrichment of  The United States of America, both as a catalyst for the war for independence but also a huge business after the war processing what was made under the control of this young nation.
The story of slavery and its waning in the world as an accepted for of labor (as well as forced or even voluntary indenturing) is quite fascinating as you look at the time bale of the rest of the world against the US. Its an eye opener.
See you next time....



Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Rum Summer Reading Program

As I mentioned last week, there is a literary side to my rum fascination. More precisely, Rum made in the USA. So I posted my first book I am reading and wanted to let you know where I am going from there and solicit comments from you for your opinions of these and any other Run-related books on the subject.
Let's look at what I have ahead of me now after Sugar Changed the World. 






My next tome is Rum: The Epic Story of the Drink that Conquered the World [Charles A Coulombe -
Citadel Press]. How can I pass that one by!?! The flyleaf and commentary about the book leads me to feel this could be very interesting and will help cement Rum into the history of the United States.

"The very mention of the word rum summ0ns romantic visions of high spirits, adventure and skullduggery. Pirates roamed the seven seas. Americans jitterbugged to "Rum and Coca-Cola" in the forties. Modern Manhattanites down the latest Bacardi cocktails in the cities trendiest bars. ..." [From cover notes]







The Third, currently the last, we have Closing Time: Prohibition, Rum-Runners and Boarder Wars [Daniel Francis - Douglas & McIntyre]. That looks like it should be chocked full of information and stories I might be able to relate back to you.

"Canadians have long associated Prohibition with the colorful history of the Jazz Age in the United States. But even before the American ban that was in place from 1920 to 1933, Canada initiated its own Prohibition. The so-called Cold Water Army was led by zealots and prudes preaching hellfire and damnation, but also by committed social reformers who recognized the ill effects of excessive drinking. In March 1918, the federal government banned the manufacture and importation of liquor. For the next 21 months, Canada was as dry as any law could make it, which admittedly was not very dry. Closing Time tells the story of this fascinating attempt to control the social habits of Canadian citizens. It began as a popular crusade to cleanse society of a widespread evil, but instead became an opportunity for larceny, profit, and violence on a grand scale.

Employing a variety of anecdotes and illustrations, Closing Time conjures the legal and historical context of Prohibition, presenting well-rendered figures and impressive research. Comparing the past with our present-day prohibition of certain recreational drugs, Francis explores the limits of laws that forbid these indulgences — a topic that is quite relevant today." [Amazon description]



Coming later will be new and info from around the Business and more!! I have been watching emails and tweets as well as having a few conversations -- Don't miss a blog!

For now

Friday, July 03, 2015

Cherry Bombs for the 4th!!!



http://images.media-allrecipes.com/images/55519.jpg 
Just a quick Independence Day Drink! - Keep Cool and safe!

 
Cherry Bomb
4 Oz. Rum (This lends itself to a clear/white/Chrystal Rum, but experiment!!)
1 liter of Lime Soda
4 Oz Grenadine Syrup
The juice of I lime
One whole lime – slices
4 Maraschino Cherries

In a mixing glass, combine rum, lime soda, grenadine and lime juice.
Mix well and pour into 4 chilled glasses.
Garnish with lime slices and cherries.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

A literary Look at Rum

While on a recent trip to Springfield, Illinois, I came upon a book that looked interesting. I am a History enthusiast, and a Rum one as well. Sugar looked as though it could be a connection with both. so I got this book Sugar Changed The World.


A synopsis of it follows:



Sugar Changed The World





Marc Aronson and Marina Budhos were inspired to write this book when they discovered that they each have sugar in their family backgrounds. Those intriguing tales inspired this husband and wife team to trace the globe-spanning history of the essence of sweetness, and to seek out the voices of those who led bitter sugar lives. As they discovered, the trail of sugar runs like a bright band through world events, making unexpected and fascinating connections.
Sugar leads us from religious ceremonies in India to Europe’s Middle Ages, when Christians paid high prices to Muslims for what they thought of as an exotic spice, then on to Columbus, who brought the first cane cuttings to the Americas.
Cane–not cotton or tobacco–drove the bloody Atlantic slave trade and took the lives of countless Africans, who toiled on vast sugar plantations under cruel overseers. And yet the vary popularity of sugar gave abolitionists in England the one tool that could finally end the slave trade. Planters then brought in South Asians to work in the cane fields, just as science found new ways to feed the world’s craving for sweetness. Sugar moved, murdered, and freed millions.

From 1600 to the 1800s, sugar drove the economies of Europe, the Americas, Asia and Africa and did more “to reshape the world than any ruler, empire, or war had ever done.” Millions of people were taken from Africa and enslaved to work the sugar plantations throughout the Caribbean, worked to death to supply the demand for sugar in Europe. Aronson and Budhos make a case for Africans as not just victims but “true global citizens….the heralds of [our] interconnected world,” and they explain how, ironically, the Age of Sugar became the Age of Freedom. Maps, photographs and archival illustrations, all with captions that are informative in their own right, richly complement the text, and superb documentation and an essay addressed to teachers round out the fascinating volume. Covering 10,000 years of history and ranging the world, the story is made personal by the authors’ own family stories, their passion for the subject and their conviction that young people are up to the challenge of complex, well-written narrative history. (Timelines, Web guide to color images, acknowledgments, notes and sources, bibliography, index) (Nonfiction. 12 & up)
—Kirkus Reviews (starred)

I have just begun this book and I will post things of interest and hope to recommend it to any of you with interest...
In the meantime, let me pour a short glass of Rum and read...............