Bahama Bob's Rumstyles

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Protect Yourself from Law Suits from Your Holiday Party This Year

     Holiday gatherings are supposed to be a time to build the morale for those who don’t get to spend time on a social basis.  Their purpose is to encourage people who don't normally socialize with colleagues to enjoy themselves and talk about things other than work.   These parties are usually a lot of fun unless someone manages to ruin it by getting out of hand by too much of a good thing.  This is where the party can get out of hand and wind you up at the wrong end of a nasty suit.   Here are some ways to help you keep out of trouble without having to scrap your holiday party.  These apply whether you are having a company party or just a gathering of friends at your house. 

You Don't Need This Guy at the Party
     First and most important most important is to have a good handle on the amount of booze available to those attending.  Diminished capacity of a party goer from overdrinking is not a defense to claims of harassment or assault and that hosts could ultimately be held responsible because they created the environment for that conduct to take place.  It is after all your place and your responsibility to control the behavior of the people that you have invited.    You shouldn't have an open bar with unlimited drinks at any of your holiday parties.  Limit the drink menu and to make sure to have one person to pour and serve the booze, preferably someone that is not a guest of the party.

Give up Your Keys if You are Drinking
     Getting people back home after the party is the next consideration.  In to many cases, people will leave the party and drive home after imbibing way too much.    Have cars and taxis available to make sure that those who have had too much to drink get home safely.

Can't Wait to see This Party on You Tube
     In today's world of social media, smartphones are always present and people will always be taking pictures and videos of moments they think are funny, particularly if somebody starts acting up at the party.  Today these holiday parties are no longer a private party, but rather an open party.  Party goers should be reminded of basic ground rules before posting or sharing any scenes from a holiday party.   The old days of what goes on at the party stays at the party are long gone and there are expectations of privacy when you are hosting a holiday party.

     It is always important to remember when you get a group of people together, not everyone has the same values and opinions.  It's not appropriate in the general society and not appropriate at a holiday party to belittle or treat other guests with disrespect.   It is never easy to keep everything under complete control at a holiday party, but paying attention to what is happening at the party that you are hosting will limit the chances of a problem that could wind up with you in an ugly law suit at the end of the night.

     Here is to a wonderful season of holiday parties and the safety and happy conclusion to what are supposed to be happy events.


Friday, December 9, 2016

Organic Rum? What's the Difference?

Organic Rum
      True, if you're changing your eating and drinking habits to reduce your exposure to toxic chemicals, switching to organic rum isn’t likely to do you much good.   The chemicals you're trying to avoid are entirely taken out of the picture during the processes of fermentation and distillation.   There has to be another gain to the consumer to make it worth going for.
      Puerto Angel Rum which came to the USA in the summer of 2015 is one of my favorite rums, but it is because of how it is made more than the use of organic sugarcane.   The cane fields are just minutes from the distillery, it only takes a few hours for the cane to go from the cane cutting, to the crushing, then to the fermentation tanks.  Puerto Angel Organic Rum is USDA Organic rum, distilled from freshly squeezed cane juice at the Krassel family-owned distillery which does produce some of the finest artisanal spirits.  The family opened the distillery in 1938, and established their own organic sugarcane plantation in the high levels of the Oaxaca Mountains, Mexico. 
Organic Sugarcane
     But thinking about the bigger picture, and looking at secondary benefits, organic rum made from organic sugar cane can reduce the overall spraying of pesticides and the resultant contamination of soil and groundwater.   Drinking a rum distilled from organic sugar cane can have an impact beyond the drinker's immediate environment, and also provides a financial incentive for growers to use more earth friendly farming practices.  Florida’s sugarcane fields are a huge source of pollution of the waterways and the everglades, that could help all of us if they were to use more earth friendly farming practices.   "There is a historic load of phosphorus already in Lake Okeechobee that came from the sugar farms."  There is a current load, though it is not a major percentage that is coming from the sugar farms.  The key is to keep reducing this load.

     I feel that the organic rum is a good thing because of what it does to improve the quality of the earth more than the quality of the spirit.  Distilling removes the impurities from the spirits, making the organic card a moot one as far as the finished product goes.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Where do I get the Super-Premium and the Ultra-Premium Rums?

     Momentum finally building behind rum, the last spirits category to fully climb up the value ladder.  Perhaps it’s finally rum’s time to shine.   Key to this was shifting the consumer conversation to premium offerings and placing an emphasis on the premium and ultra-premium expressions.  One of the weaknesses of rum is that the super-premium and ultra-premium categories are relatively underdeveloped, compared to those of whisky and cognac.
     The other problem for the rum customer is that those looking for rare and top quality rums are being forced elsewhere.  The rum consumers look to online resources, rum clubs and friends traveling abroad when they are seeking high-end rums.   They are simply aren’t available in most liquor stores,  even if they are, then they are only sporadic on the shelves and not enough to get the connoisseurs excited enough to keep visiting the stores on the off chance of finding something to suit their taste.
     It’s been several years where the rum category has been working to develop and fill the gap between the low end production rums and that of the super-premium and ultra-premium expressions.   In many cases, the retail portion of this equation has no idea that there are really expressions of this caliber from the category.   Rum has to seriously attack this lack of knowledge relating to these expressions both at the customer level, but at the wholesale and retail level as well.  This after all is the only sector of the category that is showing some sales growth, while the rest has been losing ground over the past couple of years.

    Great rums do no good if the customers can’t get their hands on them.  It seems to me that the industry needs to put as much effort into educating the public and the market place of the availability of these wonderful expressions. 

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Where Does Rum’s Color Come From?

     Have you ever wondered what gives all the different types of Rum their colors?  Rum is one of the few spirits that comes in a range of colors and flavors, from light and fruity to hot and spicy to deeply dark and mellow.  If you are unsure which rum is for you, a good start is often to be found simply by looking at its color, different colors of rums can help you to find the one that suits your palate.
There are white rums, golden rums, dark rums and black rums. There are also three main ways in which a rum is made, which gives a clue as to its coloring.   Traditional rums are made from molasses, cane syrup or fresh sugar cane juice.  Traditionally, each color of the rum is and indicator of the age of the rum.  The type of sugar used to make rum is not as important as how it is made and rested.
     White rum is in general, the youngest type of rum.   It is unaged or maybe a year or two spent in barrels. It is then filtered to remove any color that it got in the barrels and bottled.   Most white rums have a mild to neutral flavor, and are best used in cocktails.  White rums generally are not for sipping, they tend to be a bit harsh and have little mouth feel.   There is a taste for unfiltered ‘hot’ rum that is just a step or two above moonshine for flavor. This type of white rum is very young , most has a higher percentage of alcohol and a burning effect in the mouth.
     If rum is allowed to age undisturbed for a few years in a good oak barrel, it will begin mellow and develop a light golden color from the wood.  A good palate will pick upon tastes of spices, citrus and or wood.   Be careful in any of the golden rums, because there are some of the producers that will add brewer’s caramel to unaged rum to give you the illusion of being in a barrel.
     Dark rum is in general aged for more than two or three years in oak barrels, picking up a copper or mahogany color. These rums will provide a rich flavor profile that is very sippable and satisfying compared to the golden rums.  While technically a dark rum, black rums have a unique flavor profile due to their unique aging process.. For this reason they are favorites in many dishes and mixed drinks.   These rums are treated differently than many light rums. The black run is aged in heavily charred whiskey barrels or other oak barrels that are heavily charred before use. This treatment releases much of the wood’s flavor into the developing rum.

     This is where the colors and flavors come from in traditional rums, but be aware that many rum producers will add brewer’s caramel to enhance the colors after they are reduced from the high percentage of alcohol of the rums in the barrels as they are aged down to the traditional 40% that most spirits are bottled at.  This is a common practice that gives the brand a color consistency and back matching the color that came from the barrel in the first place.  There are others that will take rums that have spent less time in the barrels who add the caramel and other additives to give you the impression that they spent more time in the barrels than they actually had.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Audit of the House of Angostura Rum Practices

     The integrity of Angostura's rum is under audit.  Angostura rum company has been buying bulk rum from Cuba and South America and simply repackaging it, without substantial chan­ges, and selling it to export markets.  This action is in breach of the European Union's rules of origin with regard to rum blending integrity, and raising questions about the claims for its rum blends true age, according to board documents from Angostura.   Angostura, a publicly traded company on the Trinidad and Tobago Stock Exchange and could be fined for its breaches, board minutes have indicated.

Robert G. Wong
     Angostura chief executive Robert Wong has been on administrative leave for two months after the discovery by the board of directors.    Robert Wong told the media, “I won't comment just yet. I am not guilty of anything. It's unfortunate. I am not sure what the motivation is. I understand the present board wanted a changing of the guard and we had discussed it, but that action didn't go through.”   Angostura has informed the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and appointed Genevieve Johan, executive manager of export and business development, acting chief executive. 

Angostura Aging Bodega

     The board of directors first became aware of this issue in August when it was asked to sign off on a $16.5 million purchase of heavy rum concentrate to meet its rum production quota for 2016 and early 2017.     Angostura's management could not guarantee the integrity of the products which had been exported over the past few years as it had not been sufficiently transformed during the distillation process.  The management also could not guarantee that it had not made false declarations in the export certificates of origins of exports using heavy rum concentrate  in its rum blends.

     The House of Angostura in a statement said, "The integrity of Angostura's international branded rums is not under audit," says Mrs. Genevieve Jodhan, CEO Acting of Angostura Holdings Ltd.  "All our international branded rum products are aged and meet international standards." 



Monday, December 5, 2016

American Prohibition Repeal Day

American Prohibition
January 16, 1919 until December 5, 1933

    On December 5, 1933, the 21st Amendment was ratified, as announced in this proclamation from President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The 21st Amendment repealed the 18th Amendment of January 16, 1919, ending the increasingly unpopular nationwide prohibition of alcohol.

Where Did the Snaquiri Come From?

     The "Snaquiri"—or a tiny Daiquiri meant to be taken as a shot—has become a nationwide bartender handshake.      The original Snaquiri, however, wasn’t a shot. In fact, it wasn’t even a full-sized drink: It was two full-sized drinks, served side by side.  Today, they are a 2 oz. mini daiquiri served as a welcome or just to get the party started.   Karin Stanley of NYC’s Dutch Kills, is widely credited for both the concept and the name.    “We were talking about our favorite drinks, the daiquiri and started ordering them two at a time, one in a water tumbler and one in a coupe”.   We’d shoot the water tumbler and sip the coupe.” A few puns later, the Snaquiri was born.   

     As time passed, the Snaquiri was downsized to a 2 oz.  size for the average drinker, though it’s hard to say exactly when that happened. “It has definitely gone off on its own to be a Daiquiri shot,”   This is a great concept and it has spread like wildfire across the country.
     I love the idea of taking your favorite daiquiri and breaking it up into 2 oz. size shots and passing it around among a group of friends.  It is the kind of shot that a group can enjoy and not find themselves under the table in just a few minutes.   The daiquiri is a very versatile cocktail that can be tailored to the tastes of most any group.  Careful if you choose to use the “Hemingway Special” as your base daiquiri, because it is a truly butt kicking daiquiri to start with.
Here is an idea for a great starter daiquiri from which to make these fun “Snaquiri’s” based upon.  
Bahama Bob’s Basic Snaquiri
  • 2 oz. Premium White Rum
  • ½ oz. Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur
  • ½ oz. Galliano
  • ½ oz. Agave Nectar
  • Juice of ½ Lime

Place all ingredients into a shaker filled with ice and shake until chilled strain into shot glasses and enjoy.