Monday, February 29, 2016

Bailey Pryor on What Rum Really Is

Bailey Pryor
     Bailey Pryor, Founder and CEO of Real McCoy Rums has produced a video for Youtube that is a very informative lesson about the reality of rum.

Richard Seale
     During his research for the documentary, Bailey traveled to Barbados where he met Richard Seale. Together Richard and Bailey began to discuss the development of a classic Barbados Rum that  would adhere to the ‘no additives’ philosophy of rum production.   The rums would be blended from both pot and column distillates produced from black strap molasses. The distillates are then matured in heavily charred ex-bourbon American oak barrels.  The Rums have won a many awards from very well known events, all were well deserved.

    In this video  I think you will find it very interesting to listen to his philosophy and the basic trues about how rum is made and derived. 

Enjoy the Video The Truth about Rum at 

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Happy Birthday 95th to My Mother

     95 Years ago today, my mother was born in Middleborough, Massachusetts.   I just want to take a few minutes to say thanks to this amazing woman who has see me through my nearly 70 years and mad my life a really wonderful one.  Thank You for everything and Happy Birthday.  I love you Mom.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

The Latest Zacapa Reserva Limitada is Out

     Zacapa. one of the titans in the premium rum sector.   Often the only premium aged rum that non rum-drinkers can name.  this is due in part to the superb Diageo distribution network. Famous for being aged “above the clouds” in Guatemala, talented master blender, Lorena Vazquez and identified in the store by it's woven palm-leaf bottle adornment.   Zacapa has always been known as an excellent rum, but the ultra premium XO is an especially nice expression.   If you go to the source in Guatemala, you'll find something else: Zacapa’s limited edition blend.
     "Zacapa releases a special edition each year, for sale within Guatemala and select markets around the world (although not the United States).     And Rum Journal was lucky enough to grab a bottle on a recent trip to Guatemala City.      Zacapa’s 23-year blend has rums as old as 23 years; the 2015 Reserva Limitada, however, has a blend of rums between six and 24 years." The rums are matured in American white oak barrels that had formerly held sherry, Pedro Ximenez wine and American whiskeys.
     "The Limited has a rich, slightly dark caramel color.   It has a sweet aroma of vanilla, pepper, candied fruit and the slightest hint of citrus peel.   The flavor profile is marked by tropical fruit, molasses (although this is a sugarcane-juice rum), some vanilla and some spice.   The finish is peppery and oaky."   How is it different from the Zacapa 23 you’re used to?     It’s got a different kind of warmth, a different complexity,  but also a bit more of a raw quality.   Often rums with more aging are a little softer around the edges — this one isn’t — this one has some fire in its belly. And that’s a good thing. "

Friday, February 26, 2016

The New Angostura No.1 is Finally Available in the U.S.

Angostura No. 1 Second Edition
     Americans are now able to enjoy the exquisite flavors of the newest of the Angostura No. 1 Cask Series Collection.   This is the second expression released in the series.  This one is finished in French Oak Casks.  This is the first Angostura Rum to be finished in French Oak Casks.

Angostura No. 1 First Edition
     This new expression with it's purple colored label has a fruity aroma compared to the more nutty and oaky aromas of the first one version which was aged exclusively in American Oak Casks previously filled with bourbon.   On the palate, you taste flavors of dried fruit, nuttiness and a hint of floral.  This is a medium bodied rum much like the original one,   This expression has a very dry finish with a very soft fading away, where the original had a much shorter finish wit hints of chocolate and fruit.

     Both of these wonderful rums are wonderful, but quite different.  The effects of the different barrels is defiantly noticeable.   There are very few of the original Angostura No 1 left around and I doubt that these will last very long either.  I enjoyed this at the Rum Bar in Key West on Sunday and they do have a good supply for you to give it a try.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

What is the Top Spirit in Panama?

     I think that you are in for a surprise.   With all of the fine rum produced in Panama, like Abuelo, Don Pancho Origenes, Zafra, and others, but the number one spirit in Panama is Seco Herrerano, a neutral spirit fermented and distilled from pure sugarcane juice.   I had an opportunity to visit the Varela Hermanos Distillery that produces Seco Herrerano in Pesa, Panama in 2011.  This is a very clean spirit that is fermented and distilled no 200 yards from where the cane is cut.   The spirit is passed through 4 column stills, charcoal filtered and bottled.

     Why is this not technically a rum?  It is lake Cachaca in Brazil, it is a neutral spirit.  In Central and South America the spirit must spend 2 years in a barrel to call it rum.  Seco is distilled to 95% ABV which will kill all of the flavor in the spirit and bottled at 80 proof.  Though it is made from sugarcane juice, it is truly a neutral spirit like Vodka.

    “When people try our Seco cocktails, they can’t believe it tastes so good because Seco’s reputation isn’t very sexy,” says Jose Carles whose Donde Jose restaurant offers more than 20 flavors of Seco infusions.  Seco takes on the flavor of what ever it is mixed with, neutral spirits have no flavor of their own.  It is a smooth spirit that infuses well with almost any mixer.  One of the favorite mixes in Panama is milk.   

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Cubaexport Secures United States Havana Club Trademark

     This is the press release from Pernod Ricard announcing the renewal of their "Havana Club" trademark until 2026.

     Havana Club: Trademark Renewal in the USA Pernod Ricard S.A. confirms that Cubaexport, the Cuban entity that owns the U.S. trademark registration for Havana Club rum, applied for and received a specific license from the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control allowing it to renew the trademark registration in the United States. The Havana Club trademark registration has been renewed at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office through January 27, 2016. A renewal of the trademark registration through January 27, 2026 has also been submitted.

     This marks the start of another long and drawn out court battle between Pernod Ricard and Bacardi over the trademark here in the U.S..   “We are filing this Freedom of Information Act request because the American people have the right to know the truth of how and why this unprecedented, sudden and silent action was taken by the United States government to reverse long-standing U.S. and international public policy and law that protects against the recognition or acceptance of confiscations of foreign governments,” said Eduardo Sánchez, Bacardi’s senior vice president and general counsel.

Read More at 

     The good news to this is there is very likely to be quite a bit of time for all of these proceedings to be concluded before the United States Congress gets around to lifting the embargo.   This is still somewhat of "hot potato" in this presidential election year.   I'd be willing to say that it will not come to be until the elections are over in November.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

"Rum Lovers" to WIRSPA Toward Purity and Honesty in True Rum...

     This is a petition that is being circulated by the "Save Caribbean Rum".  It is interesting to see what they are asking for.   I find that the majority of the industry is looking for the same results.  The biggest thing in my mind is that of honesty of ingredients.  I have no problem with blenders adding ingredients to the blend, but if they do, that information should be made available to the consumer, allowing the buyer to get the rum that they really want and know what is in the mix.  


    One of the petition signers Richard Seale of Foursquare Distillery in Barbados says "The Caricom rum standard does NOT permit the addition of sugar and WIRSPA must not pretend that it does just to suit the practices of certain members."   This has been a long ongoing issue and it will be interesting just what effect that the petition has in the larger scheme of things.

 Petition published by Save_Caribbean_Rum  on Feb 16, 2016

WIRSPA (West Indian Rum & Spirits Producers Association, CARICOM, EU, TTB
Region: GLOBAL

Monday, February 22, 2016

Celebrating Don the Beachcomber's 109th Birthday Today

     Today we celebrate the works of a man that was arguably the Father of the Tiki scene.   Born in New Orleans on February 22, 1097 and named Ernest Raymond Beaumont Gantt.    Gantt made do in the Depression economy through his wits and odd jobs.   he would work in restaurants in Chinatown, parking cars, and doing a bit of freelance bootlegging in the months prior to the end of Prohibition.  His sociable and charming personality allowed him to befriend such Hollywood personalities as David Niven and Marlene Dietrich.   Through them he was able  to find occasional work as a technical adviser on films set in the South Pacific.
     A couple of years after he arrived in Los Angeles, Gantt happened upon a newly vacated tailor shop at 1722 North McCadden Place,  just off Hollywood Boulevard.   Where he built a little bar that seated about two dozen customers and scattered a few tables around the rest of the area. The decorations for the place were his South Pacific mementos, along with some old nets and pieces of salvaged boats he scavenged from the coastline.    His watering hole became Don the Beachcomber.
     It was Gantt’s outgoing personality and the uniqueness of his cocktails that proved irresistible to the locals as well as the Hollywood celebs.    Among the first drinks was the Sumatra Kula, which cost a quarter. A well-dressed man named Neil Vanderbilt came in one day and ordered one, then another and another. He said it was the best drink he’d had in years. He was a writer for the New York Tribune, and he soon came back with friends, including Charlie Chaplin. Word of Don the Beachcomber began to spread through Hollywood and beyond. “If you can’t get to paradise, I’ll bring it to you,” is what Gantt would tell his customers.
     Today he is best remembered for being the "father of the Tiki scene" and his famous Zombie cocktail.  This is a man from the past that is still having a huge influence on the cocktail world today.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Evening is Staying Brighter for a Longer Time These Days

The sun is setting a bit later as we move toward the spring solstice, Heading out on the water gives us some new views for the trip to the Hurricane Hole and cocktail time.  The clouds give such an ominous impression.  It is got a bit of rain in the clouds, but mostly just bluffing as we scoot across the waters of Cow Key Channel.

Saturday, February 20, 2016


Bacardi has formally requested that the US government revokes a license allowing Pernod Ricard and the Cuban Government to renew their joint venture trademark for Havana Club.  Litigation between Bacardi, the Cuban government and Pernod Ricard is continuing.
     The Bermuda-based drinks group said it has “demanded” that the US Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) reverse its decision to grant the renewal of Cuba-made Havana Club’s trademark in the US, reiterating that it is the “current and lawful owner of all rights and claims” related to the mark in the country.   In January this year, the OFAC and the US Patent & Trademark Office (PTO) granted Cubaexport, the Cuban entity that owns the US trademark registration for Havana Club, permission to renew the brand’s mark in the US, where Bacardi sells its own brand of Havana Club Rum.
     Bacardi acquired the US rights from Havana Club’s founders, the Arechabala family, and has been selling the Puerto Rico-made rum in the market since the mid-1990's.   Pernod Ricard owns the trademark for Havana Club in the rest of the world as part of a joint venture with the Cuban Government, which seized the Arechabala family’s business assets during the Cuban revolution more than 60 years ago.
Bacardi has expressed outrage since its competitor was given trademark approval last month and has now outlined to the OFAC what it calls a “history of fraud” of the Cuban government in relation to the matter.
 “OFAC’s decision to grant the license to the Cuban government reverses it prior decision in 2006 to deny that very same license and contradicts its own defense of that decision in various US courts,” said Eduardo Sánchez, senior vice president and general counsel for Bacardi.   “OFAC has acted in violation of well-settled US law and Congressional intent in a covert action that is unjustified in law. We request that OFAC revoke License 837-1 retroactively to prevent Cuba – and its business partner Pernod Ricard – from their continued trafficking in illegally confiscated property.”   He added: “OFAC should comply with the letter and spirit of US law and revoke Cuba’s license.”
     Speaking to the press in London today, Alexandre Ricard, CEO of Pernod Ricard, said it was “big news” for the company when Barack Obama announced that relations between the US Cuba would be normalized, with the hope that the trade embargo would be lifted.   “The US represents 40% of the global rum market,” he said. “Pernod Ricard managed to make Havana Club the third biggest rum brand in the world without having access to this market.   “We always said when the embargo is lifted we will try to be the first one to launch a beautiful Cuban Rum in the market. Our job is to be ready.”

Read More at 

Friday, February 19, 2016

Bahama Bob's Maple and Ginger Daiquiri

   This week I was talking to some friends from Vermont and the subject of Pure Maple Syrup came up.  I went and got me a small bottle of it and went to work.   Ginger is an interesting flavor and the use of King's Ginger Liqueur is a great place to go for that flavor. .

     The base is Siesta Key White Rum and it makes for the perfect clean and pure rum without all of the sugar and other flavor additives.  Wit this type of cocktail the pure flavors are what you need.
If you want to put a little bubble in the cocktail a little bit of Barritt's Ginger Beer is always good to put a fizz to the cocktail.

Bahama Bob's Maple and Ginger Daiquiri

·         2 oz Siesta Key White Rum
·         3/4 oz Ginger Liqueur
·         Two Dashes of Fee Bros. Lemon Bitters
·         Real Maple Syrup

Coat inside of a cocktail glass with maple syrup, then place the remaining ingredients into a shaker and shake until chilled.  Strain into the cocktail glass and garnish with  lime wheel.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Don Q is Aiming to Elevate the It's Rum with Two New Launches

Don Q is gearing up to release two new rum expressions later this year, including a limited edition single barrel expression and a “sophisticated” spiced variant.

Don Q Signature Release Single Barrel
 This is the first single barrel rum from the brand.  Just 6,000 bottles of the Don Q Signature Release Single Barrel rum will be launched, with 3,000 4.5 liter cases dedicated to the US and Puerto Rico, and the remaining 1,000 destined for Europe.
Bottled at 40% abv, the rum has been aged for just over 10 years and is described as offering “a really wonderful woodiness, with tanins and sweeter notes” as well.
The launch is part of a planned series of releases beginning with the 2005 vintage, which will be followed by the 2007 single barrel variant next year.  “We love ageing and blending,” commented Roberto Serrallés, Don Q owner and master distiller. “This is the first single barrel expression we’ve released.   “We wanted to start playing around and having fun outside of our comfort zone.   “The single barrel is a beautiful light style rum.”
Don Q Barrel Aged Spice
Furthermore, the firm is also planning to bring out a spiced rum expression mid-2016, aimed as “elevating” the spiced rum category.
Titled Don Q Barrel Aged Spice, the expression has been designed to offer a “next step” to fans of spiced rum and will be a permanent addition to the brand’s portfolio.   The rum has been infused with “natural” spiced, including cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla and tamarind.
“The spiced rum segment is growing and it’s an interesting category,” said Serrallés. “Everyone knows the big players in spiced rum, they know Captain Morgan.   “But where do spiced rum drinkers graduate to? Our rum will offer a more sophisticated version of a spiced rum – we want to elevate the category.  “We need to get away from pirates and sea monsters – we’ve talked too much about pirates and forgotten the fantastic properties of the rum itself.   “It has such an amazing taste profile that we think consumers who are interested in spiced rum are going to love.”

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Hopefully Only a Few More Weeks of Winter

    Really slow rum time this week, very little happening.  The weather here in Key West is finally beginning to warm up,  wind, overcast and rain is keeping me in the marina.   Hoping to see the winds die down and the temperature rise here very soon.  The sunset tonight was a bit colorfull initially, but completely disappeared before it hit the water.   Really looking forward to March and the beginning of Daylight Savings time and some better weather.  El Nino really sucks.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Hemingway Not Only Enjoyed His Cocktails, He Put Them Into His Writing

     Papa not only enjoyed a good cocktail ,  but also included many epic drinking episodes in his writing. In his first novel, The Sun Also Rises, 90 years ago this year.    The characters were seldom without an alcoholic beverage in their hands.     According to legend, he created his own eponymous variation of the classic daiquiri, which still appears on at the El Floridita where he created it, and in addition a potent champagne-and-absinthe blend called “Death in the Afternoon”.

     His writing seems particularly relevant today considering the recent rebirth of the cocktail-and that his style of drinking is finally back in vogue.   We as a country seem to be following in his footsteps: In 2015, according to the latest figures released by the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States earlier this week, the United States consumed 215 million 9-liter cases of booze, which was up 4.9 million cases from the previous year.   If Hemingway lived today, he'd be found drinking with the people, throughout the United States in its many high quality craft cocktail lounges.

There are so many drinking scenes in his books that drinks historian Philip Greene wrote a fascinating Hemingway cocktail companion called To Have and Have Another, which came out in 2012.   "He wants the reader to feel what the character was feeling," explains Greene. "He's telling you something about the character by what he's drinking and where he's drinking."

     According to Greene, though he took Campari and his beloved Gordon's Gin and Rose's Lime Juice  along on an African safari, he wasn't afraid to try new things. "He's going to drink what the locals drink," says Greene. "I think he was an omnivore." 

     It didn't hurt either that Hemingway could hold his liquor for the most part. "He had a prodigious tolerance," says Greene, noting that many of the writer's contemporaries were lightweights. "Fitzgerald didn't have much of a tolerance. Ian Fleming didn't have much of a tolerance."   Hemingway was prone to fabrication, but one drinking yarn we know is true involves the legend of his downing 17 double daiquiris at Havana's famed El Floridita in a single session. 

Monday, February 15, 2016


A Bacardi executive has testified at a US Congress subcommittee hearing as the group continues to fight what is calls a “sudden and unexplained” trademark ruling over Havana Club rum.

      Lawmakers are scrutinizing the decision to allow Pernod Ricard and the Cuban government to renew their Havana Club trademark in the US.   In January this year, the US Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) and the US Patent & Trademark Office (PTO) granted French drinks group Pernod Ricard permission to renew it's Havana Club trademark in the US, where Bacardi has its own trademark for Havana Club rum.   Due to a trade embargo between US and Cuba, which has been in place since 1961 when the Cuban revolution led to communism, Pernod Ricard has been unable to launch Cuba-made Havana Club in the US.
     Bacardi has been selling its own brand of Havana Club rum, made in Puerto Rico, in the US since the mid-1990's.   However, Pernod Ricard owns the Havana Club trademark in the rest of the world as part of a joint venture with the Cuban government, which seized assets from the founding family of Havana Club during the revolution.   Bacardi has expressed outrage since the US Office of Foreign Assets Control issued its ruling last month, allowing Cubaexport, the Cuban entity that owns the US trademark registration for Havana Club, to renew its trademark in the US.   While Pernod Ricard cannot sell Havana Club in the US due to the embargo, it has previously owned a trademark for the brand in the country. But the US government rejected an application to renew rights to the mark in 2006 since its “contravened US foreign policy”.    As such, Bacardi claims the ruling has “reversed long-standing US and international public policy and law”.
     The US House of Representatives Judiciary Committee has launched an investigation into the matter and recently called Rick Wilson, senior vice president for external affairs at Bacardi, to take the witness stand during its hearing.   “These decisions are unprecedented and shocking because they undo decades of United States law and policy by approving Cuba’s efforts to capitalize on, and traffic, in stolen goods,” Wilson said in his opening testimony.   “Courts in the United States have steadfastly held that foreign confiscations will not be given effect because such confiscations are ‘shocking to our sense of justice’.”
‘Confiscation at gunpoint’
     Wilson also argued that Cuban Assets Control Regulations (CACR), which implement the trade embargo against Cuba, prohibit all transactions involving property, including trademarks, if the Cuban Government “has any interest”, unless authorized by the Secretary of the Treasury. He said a loophole in the embargo was closed in 1998, allowing Bacardi and other companies to “ensure Cuba does not profit off of stolen property, especially through US trademark registrations and renewals”.   Of Cuba’s confiscation of the Havana Club trademark in the 1960's, Wilson said: “What occurred was a forcible confiscation at gunpoint. Pernod Ricard, knowing all of this sordid history, chose to invest with Cuba in this stolen brand.
     “For decades, the United States has prevented Cuba and its business partners from profiting off the United States Havana Club registration – it should continue to do so.”  House Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatt said: “This week the IP subcommittee will examine the issue of confiscated property in Cuba.
     “The Cuban government, led by Fidel Castro, has stolen billions in property, including homes and businesses, owned by Americans and American investors. Perhaps the most recognised case is that of the Arechabala Family liquor business, which had its trademark for Havana Club Rum seized by the Cuban government and then licensed to another company against the family’s wishes.
     “As the Obama Administration looks to improve relations with Cuba, important questions remain about how these claims will be satisfied.”
Read More at 

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Happy Valentine's Day

This is a day for lover's, I love my lovely wife and the fun of the Caribbean.   Don't forget you special person on this very special day.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Dessert Time with Bahama Bob's Coco-Nana Daiquiri

     When I think about a dessert cocktail, I think of something on the sweet side and maybe a little bit creamy.   Today I'll be playing with Bruno Mars' Selvarey Cocoa Rum and Bahama Bob's Banana Rum Liqueur to see what we can come up with.

     I've always liked a chocolate covered banana, so something along that line in a dessert cocktail should be really good.  Off the the "Floating Rum Lab" and see what I can come up with.

Bahama Bob's Coco-Nana Daiquiri

  • 1 1/2 oz. Selvarey Cocoa Rum
  • 1 1/2 oz. Bahama Bob's Banana Rum Liqueur
  • 3/4 oz.  Pierre Ferrand Dry Curacao
Place all ingredients into a shaker fill two thirds with ice and shake until chilled.  Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a spear of banana.

     The aromas of the cocoa, banana and the curacao makes your mouth water and small sips seem to keep on going like the energizer bunny.  Really fun long lasting dessert, great for an aft deck finish to a great dinner.  ;o)

Friday, February 12, 2016

Bartenders Debate Level of Responsible Service

"The best bartenders get a kick out of knowing they’re helping people have a good time – but what if it goes too far? Should bartenders be to blame if someone drinks themselves into injury or illness?"

     This is a troublesome issue for all of the bartenders.  There is a fine line between "buzzed and Blotto", sometimes it is a mater of one drink.  I feel that as a responsible bartender it is part of my job to keep an eye on the customers, but the final responsibility is in the hands of the patron to "Know when to say when".   I don't believe in shoving drinks in front of patrons one right after the other without being aware of their condition.  I also believe that as a bartender, I should make an effort to see that they get safely out of the bar and not behind the wheel of a car.

     In this article there is a good debate among barmen on the subject.
Know your limits
     “It’s everyone’s job to make sure the guests are happy and safe at the same time,” comments Kate Gerwin, general manager of HSL Hospitality and winner of the Bols Around the World Bartending Championships 2014. “First and foremost obviously the customer should know their own limits, however we all know that is not always the case. Bartenders should make safe service of alcohol a huge priority in day-to-day business and the owner of the bar should take a vested interest in the education of the staff about over-serving and the dangers and consequences.”
     But for others, the responsibility rests with those in a managerial position who need to step up to their line of duties. “Inevitably, the responsibility lies with the management chain – they are the licensees,” says British bartender and entrepreneur JJ Goodman, co-founder of the London Cocktail Club. “In the UK we have an inherent history of binge drinking, so customers aren’t very perceptive to being told they’re not allowed another drink. When that sort of situation occurs, someone more senior and experienced needs to come in to handle it and command control as quickly as possible.”
Diffusing the situation
     Similar snippets of advice surrounding this irrefutably sensitive subject are echoed throughout the industry. Accusing guests of being drunk is deemed as the biggest faux pas, and a sure fire way to escalate an already testing episode. Avoiding embarrassment, ascertaining a first name basis and gaining the aid and trust of any peers who may be present are all recommended methods when it comes to diffusing any drama involved with this task.
Staff training
It’s a statement that is evidently being taken seriously all around the world, as formal alcohol service training is becoming ever more paramount. Australia now requires staff at most venues to complete a Responsible Service of Alcohol training course before employment begins, while the National Restaurant Association in the US offers educational resources, materials and programs such as ServSafe Alcohol. With a holistic approach, the course offers risk management training on responsible alcohol service practices for all front of house staff – bartenders, waiters, hosts and even security and valets – all curated to “set them up for success”.
“Bartenders and servers of alcohol can face both criminal and civil charges related to serving alcohol,” reiterates Jay Lerdal, product manager, ServSafe. “Studying a responsible alcohol service program helps employees to train in areas that may be encountered when serving alcohol. This includes understanding alcohol law and responsibility, recognizing and preventing intoxication, checking identification and handling difficult situations.”

Thursday, February 11, 2016

El Dorado Introduces a New Wine Barrel Aged Series of 15 Year Old Rums

     Six special further-matured releases from Guayana's  El Dorado Rums, this is their 15-year-old rum finished for a year in lightly toasted casks which used to hold a variety of wines.   The final resting of the rum adds a very nice touch to the final expression.

     The six expressions make for a great collection.     They are each finished in a different wine cask.  They are Ruby Port Finish, Sauternes Finish, Dry Madeira Finish, Sweet Madeira Finish, Red Wine Finish and White Port Finish.     Each of these give the final product its unique flavors.

     The Sauternes Finish gives the El Dorado 15 Year Old Rum finished for more than a year in casks that used to hold Sauternes, a sweet French white wine from Bordeaux. The resulting rum is well balanced with hints of smoke.   

     The Madeira Dry yields an El Dorado, the award-winning 15-year-old rum has been finished for the final year in French oak casks that used to hold dry Madeira fortified wine. A spicy rum with notes of caramelized tropical fruit.

     The Dry Ruby Port is a limited-edition release of El Dorado 15 Year Old rum that has been finished for more than a year in casks from a single estate which used to hold ruby port. This is full of exotic spice, dried fruit and chocolate notes.

     All of these expressions have their own unique flavor and all aged for about an additional year in the barrels of the very famous wines.   These rums are not immediately available here in the United States, but can be ordered from "The Whisky Exchange"  a World of Fine Spirits, on line at .   They do ship to the United States for a fee.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

“Customers Saved by Tiki Statue When Tree Crashes Through Restaurant”

There is something to be said for the safety that sitting near a Tiki statue can provide you.  Here is a story from Ventura, California how the Tiki saved the customers.

     The owners of a restaurant in Ventura, California, say a tiki statue saved four people when a 150-foot-tall palm tree came crashing through the roof during a day of powerful wind gusts in Southern California.
     An interior security camera captured footage of the tree falling through the roof of VenTiki Lounge Sunday in downtown Ventura, narrowly missing four people on the patio. The footage shows restaurant employees running into view as the tree snaps in two after striking the roof.  The tree was one of several knocked down in Los Angeles and Ventura counties Sunday due to damaging winds.

     Anthony Longoria is the head chef at VenTiki Tiki Lounge and Lanai.   "We will have 8 to 10 people up on the lanai on a busy night eating and had that had happened ... but it didn't it happened exactly the best way and when the tree came down and went down the railing it stopped 6-inches from the main gas line for the heater, so we got really lucky," said Longoria.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Hanging at Your Favorite Pub can be Good for You

  "Regularly going to your local pub makes you happier, healthier and more sociable, new research from Oxford University has found."

     I really have to agree with their findings.  I know that I really enjoy dropping by the Hurricane Hole here on Stock Island after a day at work to chat with many of my friends and chill a bit with a nice cocktail.   I know that it makes me feel good and I enjoy the rest of my evening a lot better when I get back home.  

   “The Department of Experimental Psychology at Oxford University found that smaller “community style” pubs are better than larger city-center pubs for maintaining more close friends.   While people who regularly go to large pubs tend to have a larger social circle, they have fewer close friends than drinkers that frequent small local pubs, they found.  The study also makes a strong claim that goes against the controversial new UK drinking guidelines, saying that moderate alcohol intake has strong physical and mental health benefits.   “A limited alcohol intake improves well being and some (though not all) social skills, just as it has been shown to improve other cognitive abilities and health, but these abilities decline as alcohol intake increases beyond a moderate level”, a statement accompanying the report said.”
Read More at 

     You get to decide for yourself, but in my opinion I believe that the study was if I may use a British term, "spot on".    I find it very enjoyable meeting with all of my friends that are regulars there as well as meeting so many visitors to the pub as well.  I keeps you from turning into a hermit and keeps you in the social world and hones your social skills as well.

     Give it a try, but keep an open mind and I feel like you too will find it very helpful as well.