Tuesday, February 28, 2017

My Presidential Hero Based on Alcohol Usage

Franklin Delano Roosevelt
     Franklin Delano Roosevelt has become my hero president, as far as related to how and what he did for the alcohol industry.  FDR is a legend among drink-loving folks. He repealed Prohibition, this alone puts him at the top of my list of presidents that actually drank.  He also mixed drinks like it was the Roaring ‘20s all through the Depression was on at the time.. This is a FDR had serious mixology skills as well, he also knew how to turn hard times into great ones. When life gives him lemons, he makes Bermuda Rum Swizzles.

John F. Kennedy
Rutherford B. Hayes
            John F. Kennedy got my attention because of his love of the trendy at the time Daiquiri.   John Adams our second president liked his rum as well among other tings.   In these times we have Barrack Obama who only drank beer and now we have a non drinker.  The very worst though was Rutherford B. Hayes, his wife was not in any way a fan of booze of any kind.   Rutherford backed her up so completely that he insisted that the White House staff use rum flavoring instead of real rum in punch for guests. This is the worst of them, at least it was rum flavoring.

Monday, February 27, 2017

The Women are Taking Over the Top of the Rum World

      There are more and more women being found at the top of the rum companies around the world.  Joy Spence was the first and she is celebrating 25 years with Appleton.
Appleton Estate's Joy Spence
        Appleton Estate has honored master blender Joy Spence’s 20th year at the distillery by launching a 25-year-old rum, named Appleton Estate Joy Anniversary Blend.   Joy Spence’s creation, the limited edition 25-year-old minimum aged rum also includes rums that have been aged up to 35 years.  “For my anniversary blend, I simply set out to create the rum that I’d like to sip while watching the colors of my garden change in the warm glow of the Jamaican sunset,” Joy Spence said.   “It includes two rum marques which are of particular sentimental significance to me: The first of these marques was laid down to age in 1981, which is the year I joined the Appleton Estate team, and the second is my favorite marque of pot still rum. The final blend is a wonderful rum that I hope will be become a cornerstone of my legacy.”
     Spence graduated from the University of the West Indies with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and the University of Loughborough with a Master of Science in Analytical Chemistry.   She joined Appleton Estate as chief chemist and quickly became “enthralled” with the process of blending rum.  Over the next 16 years, Spence learned under the expert guidance of former master blender Owen Tulloch.   Joy Spence’s became the world’s first female master blender in 1997, it came at a time when rum was primarily made and consumed by men.

     Appleton Estate Joy Anniversary Blend will be rolled out across markets starting in March 2017.   The new offering “opens with a delicate orange peel top note”, a hallmark of Appleton Estate rums.  On the finish, there are hints of “warm vanilla, butterscotch, coffee and layers of almond and toasted oak.
Serve neat in a tumbler to fully appreciate Appleton Estate Joy Anniversary Blend, which opens with a delicate orange peel top note, a hallmark of Appleton Estate rums, intertwined with ginger and spice. The aroma finishes with vanilla, butterscotch, coffee, and layers of almond. The palate is exceptionally smooth with a long, elegant brown sugar finish.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Spring Has Popped in North Carolina

Flowering Plum Tree
     Sunday Morning, just one more week up here on this trip and it's back to Key West for a couple of weeks and then one more trip up here to put the finishing touches on everything.  Couldn't be happier the way things are progressing, things are finally starting to go back together and they are going to be beautiful, just like when those guys on TV.

     Spring is popping a little early this year, many of the frees are in bloom already.  The neighbor's Bradford Pear, my Flowering Plum and some of the Rhododendrons are blooming as well, makes for a wonderful walk through the woods.   I had forgotten how beautiful spring is up here in the North Carolina

Bradford Pear Tree Looking Like a Popcorn Tree

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Angostura Appoints Jodhan as Permanent CEO

       Rum and bitters producer Angostura Holdings has confirmed its acting CEO Genevieve Jodhan has been made permanent in the role effective 14 February.   With the appointment, she becomes the first woman to lead a large Trinidad and Tobago company outside of the energy sector.   Jodhan has been heading the company in an acting capacity since September 2016 when previous CEO Robert Wong went on a period of leave.   Prior to her promotion, Jodhan held the role of sales and marketing executive manager.

Genevieve Jodhan
     As CEO, Jodhan will lead the executive management team, support the board of directors on strategic business and lead growth strategies.   "Genevieve has the experience and track record of delivering results and has proven leadership," said Dr. Rolph Balgobin, chairman of the Angostura board.

     "She spearheaded our international sales growth increasing market share and sales of our signature rums and bitters in Europe, Asia and Australia and has directed the development of the brands in many emerging markets including Russia, Czech Republic, and Armenia."

Jodhan added: "I am both humbled and honored to be appointed chief executive officer. I have been with the company for close to a decade and my commitment has always been to Angostura's people, products and values.   "I am keen to build on the long outstanding achievement of our manufacturing business, through the execution of forward looking business strategies that add to the customer experience, and build on our shareholders' value."

Read More at http://www.thespiritsbusiness.com/2017/02/jodhan-confirmed-as-angostura-ceo/ 

Friday, February 24, 2017

Rum is Bracing for Falling Volumes Ahead

     This is from a report that surfaced recently,  It looks like it is time for the rum sector to buckle down and work on it image and get some guidelines in place so the people purchasing rum truly know what they are buying and expect more rather than less from the sector.

     “The global rum market is set to face a tough future, according to joint research from just-drinks and The IWSR, with volumes expected to slide over the next five years.”  The Global Rum Insights report has forecast a compound annual drop of 0.5% between 2016 and 2021, representing a decline of almost 3.7m cases. The rum segment's top three markets - India, the US and the Philippines - are all expected to record falls.   The predicted five-year dip follows a decline of 0.8% in 2015 to 141.8m nine-liter cases, with nine of the top 20 markets and four of the top five registering declines.

     Nine of the top 20 markets fell in 2015, including four out of the top five. Virtually all of those in growth are in low single digits.   Rum’s trajectory is one of gentle decline and not overly dynamic, at least when viewed from a top-line vantage point.  

     One of the biggest issues for rum lies in the fact that it’s basis is value-priced brands which only account for a further 39.1% of sales, meaning that almost 60% of total category sales are value or low-priced expressions.  This has implications for brand building, particularly premium brand building. In much of the world, rum has a relatively low image and is viewed as a commodity product rather that a product of quality.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Things are Moving Along Well in Mooresville

     Two days behind me and a lot of progress has been made.  The exterior of the house has been pressure washed and re stained, paint is progressing well on the interior.  The roofers start replacing the roof today and the flooring people arrive on Monday.
      In the mean time, I’m playing lumberjack.  The yard is suffering from major over growth.  I’ve cut down a couple of trees and pruned many many more to go.  Today it is back inside to replace a couple of vanities and ad some crown moldings.     The progress is good, things are moving right along and the list is getting shorter.  I’m afraid that I will be here for a full two weeks.  Currently planning on driving back on Monday the 6th of March. 

     The important thing to me is that I'm getting a lot done each day in a lot of different areas.  Yesterday was demo on the old deck by the pond and some work on building a new well cover.  The painting and plastering is moving along well.  I feel like on the Flip or Flop Show.  Only difference is that I don't have a crew to come in to take care of a lot of this stuff.

     The old body will be needing a break by then.  Dock to repair and a ton of clean-up around the yard.  2 ½ acres is a lot of area and lots of things to take care of.  Looking forward to having this chore behind me.   I need a Karaoke break, but there will be none for the next couple of weeks.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Don Q Releases Oak Barrel Spiced Rum Expression

     Don Q has finally released its anticipated Oak Barrel Spiced Rum after first announcing plans to release it for a one year now.  “Don Q first announced plans for the release at the launch of its Single barrel last year.”  Oak Barrel Spiced Rum is created from rums aged between three and six years.  This is the “structure, smoothness and tanins” to differentiate the Don Q’s from other spiced rums, the natural blend of vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and clove is then added Yielding a “dry” spiced rum that is free from artificial colors and flavors. 
      “We took our time in crafting our Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced Rum,” said Roberto Serrallés, the sixth-generation Don Q rum maker.  We wanted to make sure we created an elevated experience for our customers; one that would reveal how barrel ageing and pure ingredients can take spiced rum from an ordinary mixer to an exceptional spirit that is ideal for crafting unique cocktails as well as for drinking neat, on the rocks or with a splash.”

          Tasting of the expression from the nose to the tasting notes includes vanilla, nutmeg, honey oak and tanins.   Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced Rum is bottled at 90 proof/45% abv and is available across the US now priced at $29.99.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Jimmy Buffett Lifestyle Community Coming to Daytona Beach

     I can't believe this hasn't happened before.  Jimmy has been near "retirement" age for a number of years now.  What a great idea, if it is pulled off properly this could compete with places like the Villages for people of retirement age and ready to live the laid back and "keywasted" lifestyle.

Jimmy Buffett
      Jimmy Buffett fans in search of a real-life "Margaritaville" will soon be able to find it, just not in Key West.   It will be right here in Daytona Beach.  Canadian developer Minto Communities announced that Buffett's Margaritaville Holdings company has agreed to become a strategic partner in developing its planned 6,900-home community for residents 55-and-older on the north side of LPGA Boulevard, just west of Interstate 95.  
     The first homes are expected to be ready for move in by fall 2018, said William Bullock, a senior vice president with Minto.  The new deal is a "game changer for this area," said John Albright, the CEO of Daytona Beach-based Consolidated-Tomoka Land Co., which recently sold the land where the first phase of the Latitude Margaritaville, Daytona Beach is planned. "It will make the Minto development something that people identify with nationally."
Town Center "Park"
     The community, which originally was to be named Oasis Daytona, will now be called Latitude Margaritaville, Daytona Beach, and will be designed to reflect the lifestyle espoused in Buffett's songs throughout the development.   "Featuring world-class amenities and design, Latitude Margaritaville, Daytona Beach, will reflect Margaritaville's authentic 'no worries' tropical vibe, offering an immersive brand experience," according to a news release issued by Minto.
     "With Minto's expertise in creating master-planned developments and Margaritaville's inherent ability to deliver fun and escapism, Latitude Margaritaville has the exact coordinates for those looking to live the Margaritaville lifestyle as they grow older, but not up," stated John Cohlan, the CEO of Palm Beach-based Margaritaville Holdings, in the news release.
Community Center
     Buffett and Cohlan are the majority owners of Margaritaville Holdings, whose operations include destination resorts/hotels across the Southeastern United States and Caribbean, four gaming locations, and more than 60 food-and-beverage locations.   "Daytona will be the first of several communities we'll be developing in partnership with Margaritaville Holdings," said William Bullock, a senior vice president with Minto, in a phone interview.
     "Music, food and beverages will be a big part of the community," Bullock said, adding that the community's town center will include a music bandshell and "Margaritaville-inspired food and beverage offerings" among its amenities, which also will include a fitness center, indoor lap pool and spa, and an outdoor resort-style pool. "We're definitely going to do some live broadcasts from there (Latitude Margaritaville, Daytona Beach) on their SiriusXM Channel," he added, although he did not know who those performers might be.   Bullock said he was told by Margaritaville Holdings officials, "You never know when or where Jimmy Buffett may show up to do a concert." 
     The community will also operate for its residents a private oceanfront beach club in Ormond-by-the-Sea that will be accessed via a loop shuttle bus.   Latitude Margaritaville, Daytona Beach is expected to be the biggest master-planned community ever built in the Volusia-Flagler area.   Bullock said while his company is initially looking to develop between 6,000 and 7,000 homes, "there's still an opportunity grow the community" even further by acquiring additional adjacent land from Consolidated-Tomoka, which recently completed its sale of nearly 1,600 acres to Minto for $27.2 million. That land, on the south half of the planned community, is where Minto will be developing the project's first phase of up to 3,400 homes, as well as a neighborhood retail center along the north side of LPGA Boulevard, just west of the Tomoka River.
     Margaritaville Holdings is currently in talks about the possibility of becoming involved in the neighborhood retail center, Bullock said. The 200,000-square-foot retail center is expected to include a grocery store as well as restaurants and shops and would be next to the south entrance of the gated "golf cart-friendly" community, he said.

Learn More about this at https://www.latitudemargaritaville.com/ 

Monday, February 20, 2017

Lake Norman Here I Come

     Today is a travel day for me.  I’m heading up to North Carolina to put in some days on the house on Lake Norman.  My long time tenants have moved out and it is time to play the “Property Brothers” game and get it refurbished to sell.   Fortunately, I won’t have to trip over a production team as they film the project.  Most of what has to be done is to remove some overgrown plants and fix a few things that have just gotten old.  I moved out some 11 years ago and things can grow a lot in that time. 

     Marta and I built the house in 1990 and it has stood proud ever since.  It just needs to what I will call normal maintenance after 27 years.  I will have some fun up there as well as working, so I’ll keep you up on what is happening. 

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Fishing Anyone?

     The mangroves of the Florida Keys are always willing to unveil new adventures and sights every time you visit them.  These days in the kayak we are able to quietly arrive upon sightings of wildlife going about their everyday lives.  This is really exciting for us and happens more and more often.  It isn't very often that you get the opportunity to catch an Egret stabbing at a fish, but I was lucky enough to catch this one.  Enjoy the vision that I had as I cruised through these fascinating Eco Systems of the Keys.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Only Three Days Left to Attend The 2017 Miami Boat Show Presented by Progressive Insurance

     2017 Miami Boat Show is underway on Virginia Key at the Historic Marine Stadium.  The show is filled with everything marine and necessary to maintain your nautical life.  There has been a greatly improved control of the traffic on the Rickenbacker Causeway allowing you to get to and from the show quicker and with a lot less stress that the previous year.   My personal recommendation is to park at the American Airlines Arena and take the Water Taxi (if you already have bought you tickets on line) to and from the show.  It is a very relaxing ride through the port of Miami to the show and the arena gets you back onto the freeway without dealing with the city traffic.

     Once at the show, you will be walking for hours upon hours to see all the booths in the tents and several more at the exhibits in the water across from the historic Marine Stadium.   If you are looking for boats, engines, electronics, marine furniture, flooring, accessories or just ideas to update the boat you have, this is the place to be.  

     We spent a lot of the day in the B, C, and D tents and on the docks.  There is so much to see, collecting brochures and talking to the people that make the pieces.  I’ve been attending this show in Miami for many years, this year is one of the best all round experience that I have ever had there.   The shuttles, parking, water taxis, and the content of the show itself made for a great experience.  The show runs through Sunday, so if you haven’t thought about going and you have an interest in anything nautical, get on line get your tickets, parking and head on out to the show. 

     Tickets and the parking can be purchased online at http://www.miamiboatshow.com/tickets-and-parking .  You cannot take the water taxi to the show if you don’t already have your tickets to the show and the ticket lines on site can take quite a bit of time.  Having all of your tickets when you arrive will save you a lot of time and add to your enjoyment of the show once you get there. 

Friday, February 17, 2017

Bahama Bob’s French Riviera Cocktail

        A nice cocktail for the evening that offers a warmth with a interesting variety of flavor is what the         evening is calling for.   Here is a little cocktail that is quite easy to make that will take the edge off fo the     day and leave you feeling warm inside.

     Bahama Bob’s French Riviera

  • ¾ oz. Plantation Barbados Grande Reserve
  • ¾ oz. Pierre Ferrand Dry Curacao
  • ¾ oz.  Rouge Vermouth
  • ¼ oz. Licor 43
  • 2 dashes Fee Brothers Old Fashion Bitters
  • 2 dashes Fee Brothers Cardamom Bitters
     Shake all ingredients with ice. Then strain into an ice-filled glass.   Garnish with a lemon.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Rum Craft Distilling Growing Fast Across the United States

     Recent changes to state laws have made it cheaper and easier for small upstarts to open distilleries, sparking the appearance of local craft spirit makers.  Many states have introduced Distillery Laws that greatly reduced licensing fees and allowed distillers to sell spirits directly to consumers on site in their showrooms by the glass and by the bottle.   That gives distilleries the ability to open tasting rooms, which attract customers and tourists, and help increase sales.   Changes to state laws also have made it easier for small upstarts to get into the distilling business, allowing them to source more than half of their raw materials from their local areas.

     The Fed is also involved, but once you get your license to operate the still the state governments are seeing the potential for tax revenues and are making it easier to get their operations up and running and start selling the spirits.  In the past, It has been very cost.   The results of these laws is that America has gotten hundreds of new craft distilleries opening all over the country.

     New laws that are going through the state legislature here in Florida are looking to make the tourist side of the craft spirit grow by allowing the distilleries to sell to the customers more than one bottle a year that they have been saddled with for many years.  These changes are drawing more companies to give the distilling business a try.  The changes in Florida laws are happening in New York, South Carolina and many other states.  It is really exciting to see all the new rum offerings that have entered the Miami Rum Festival in April.  There are over 100 American made rums being shown.

     This is an exciting prospect to have America be a major rum producer and from what I’ve seen of the rums being produced here the basics are here and with time for the rums to age, there will be some really nice rums available from right here in the states.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Falernum is Back

      On a visit to Barbados about seven years ago, there I was introduced to a very unique liqueur called Falernum.  They make a really good cocktail there called a Corn ‘n Oil in which the John D. Taylor Velvet Falernum is the primary ingredient.  I also found out on the same trip that it is made at Foursquare Distillery there on Barbados.
     John D Taylor Velvet Falernum is a longtime staple item of resorts and bars in Barbados, and today for its use in Tropical, Tiki and Caribbean drinks such as the Rum Swizzle, Mai Tai, Zombie, and the Corn n' Oil.   It is made from an infusion of spices and lime juice into sugar cane syrup and Barbados Rum.
     Falernum was at the center of many of Don the Beachcomber and Trader Vics’ popular cocktails of the era.   Falernum is a classic for your classic Tiki and other Caribbean cocktails.   Falernum is either a non-alcoholic syrup or a liqueur based around white rum.   Almond, clove and lime zest, with other possible flavors of allspice, ginger or vanilla are added to the rum to create this unique flavor.   Falernum is one of those mixers that fit into so many different cocktails and brings them to life with the extra depth it adds.
     For those looking for the flavor of falernum without the alcohol, Fee Brothers makes a very good Falernum syrup.  The other alternative is to make it yourself.  There are a lot of recipes out there to create this in your own kitchen.  Below is the recipe that I have played with and like very much.
     Traditionally, falernum is used with rum, tiki driven or swizzle style cocktails.   Falernum adds a spicy sweetness that will overcome the citrus acetic, dryness or sourness of many cocktails.   Falernum can be used with other spirits addition to rum, it does very well, especially dark spirits like rye, brandy, and scotch.   This is one mixer that you have to be careful with and not use too much of it, as it can over power the cocktail very easily.

Bahama Bob’s Falernum Recipe
  • 1/3 cup Sliced, Raw Almonds
  • 30 whole Cloves
  • 1/8 cup of fresh chopped Ginger
  • 1/2 cup of Doorly’s White Rum or other quality white rum
  • 8 Limes
  • 2/3 cup of Water
  • 1/2 cup of Sugar in the Raw

Preheat the oven to 400°F and toast the almonds on a cookie sheet until slightly darkened and fragrant, about five minutes. Be careful not to let them burn. Let cool before using.
Place the almonds and cloves in a closeing glass jar and pour in the rum.  Shake and let steep 24 hours days.
Zest the limes, being sure no white pith is included. Set aside four of the limes for use in the rest of this recipe, and reserve the rest for another project. Add lime zest to the jar. At this point you can also add other spices, if desired. Shake and let steep for 1 day, and then strain through cheesecloth, pressing to extract as much liquid as possible.
Juice four of the limes, and strain the juice into a sauce pot. Add water and sugar, then bring to a boil on medium heat. Cook until sugar is dissolved, about 5 minutes. Let syrup cool, then combine with the strained almond and clove infusion. Strain mixture through a coffee filter, if desired, then let it rest for an additional 12 hours before use.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Happy St. Valentine's Day Cocktail

           Where we get Valentines day is an interesting story, there are many stories that began  with the execution of St. Valentine on February 14, 278 A.D.  St. Valentine was a Roman priest martyred during the reign of Claudius Gothicus. He was arrested      and imprisoned upon being caught marrying Christian couples and otherwise aiding Christians who          were at the time being persecuted by Claudius in Rome.

     No matter were the holiday came from, today is the day that we offer up something to the love of our life.  St. Valentines Day is today and if you haven't got your special cocktail for your special evening yet, here is one you might want to try..  In my mind, women seem to like two things chocolate and fresh fruit cocktails.   

     Bahama Bobs Valentine's Day Cocktail

  • 1 oz.  Selvarey Cocoa
  • 1½ oz.  Matusalem Platino Rum
  • 4 oz. Silk Dark Chocolate Almond Milk

     Place all ingredients in a shaker with ice, shake until chilled and strain into a martini glass.  Garnish     
     with 2 fresh Chocolate Dipped Strawberries.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Rum and Karaoke Tomorrow at The Rum Barrel

     Don't miss the premier of  Gary O'Key with Gary Woods and a Rum Experience with Bahama Bob Leonard on Tuesday 14th of February from 11 am til 2 pm on the Quarter Deck of The Rum Barrel on Front Street in Key West.

     For all of you arriving on the cruise ships, locals with time to enjoy or working at night and missing all of the Karaoke fun.  Gary Woods is one of the best known karaoke emcees on the island.  He carries 130,000 songs with him to keep everyone singing all morning long.

    We will be spending some time helping you become better acquainted with rum during the 15 minute breaks while Gary takes a pause for the cause.  There will be a it of sampling, and learning happening each time.  The Rum Barrel has a great selection to choose from and the bar will be there running wide open for your spirits needs.

   This will be happening on the second of Tuesday each month, so if you miss the first one, there will be another next month.  Looking forward to getting together with all of you tomorrow.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

"Don't Try to Describe the Water if You Never Seen It"

     There is no way to describe the waters of the Caribbean Skies and  Ocean.  It is different in every part of  it you visit.  The blues are of so many hues and shades that only a picture can show you, but it still can't compare to seeing it in person.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Virgin Holiday's New Data Distilled Rum: What a Concept

     Virgin Holidays created the “world’s first data-distilled rum” by using a super computer to analyze more than 15 million social media posts and produce a recipe that “tastes like a holiday”.   Virgin came up with the recipe for ‘Holiday Spirit’ by programming IBM’s cognitive computing platform ‘Watson’ to analyze feelings expressed online by more than 15 million holidaymakers.   The emotions identified were matched to thousands of rum flavor descriptors by global rum ambassador Ian Burrell, and used to build a rum which was then bottled at 40% abv.
     “The Virgin Holiday Spirit has a subtle vanilla flavor, medium sweetness, hints of coconut and is naturally caressed with cinnamon and allspice,” according to Ian Burrell .   “It was my first time collaborating with a super computer to create a distinct blend, so we ensured a high level of quality control to deliver a premium palette experience. Tough job but someone has to do it.”
Ian Burrell
     The most predominant positive emotions captured in the posts were happy, excited, curious, adventurous and relaxed, matched against vanilla, sugarcane, cinnamon, allspice and coconut flavors respectively.   Dave Geer, interim managing director at Virgin Holidays, said: “We’ve long been known for creating the ‘perfect blend’ when it comes to holidays, so we set ourselves the task of translating this into something tangible.

     “Bottling the holiday spirit, and creating a blend informed by joy, excitement, curiosity and confidence perfectly encapsulates the Virgin Holidays experience.”   The only problem is that they are only available in the UK.  This is a very interesting approach to making rum, but it makes sense, creating flavors that fit the people that are looking to buy them, it makes a lot of sense.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Bringing Back a Variation of the Sour

     Spring and warm weather is promised in about five weeks, so time to look at the cocktails for the patio after work and on the weekends.  Sour Mix is a critical mix for many spring and summer cocktails, it adds such a refreshing touch to many cocktails.  One of the simplest one is a sour.  Rum is one of the best spirits from which to create a good sour.

     Take this simple combination of my sour mix and Papa's Pilar Dark Rum to make youself flavorful and refreshing cocktail for the patio or aft deck of the boat.  If you cant wait, just build a nice fire in the fireplace and enjjoy.

Bahama Bob’s Rum Sour
  • 3 oz. Pilar Dark Rum
  • 1 oz. Bahama Bob’s Sour Mix

Place all ingredients in a shake filled with ice and shake until chilled, strain into a sour or cocktail glass filled with fresh ice.  Garnish with a cherry or nothing at all.

Bahama Bob’s Sour Mix
  • ½ cup Water
  • ½ cup Sugar in the Raw or honey can be substituted to make a hone sour mix
  • 4 oz. Lemon Juice
  • 2 oz.  Lime Juice

Place water in a suitable pan and heat to boiling point.  Add sugar and stir until all sugar is dissolved, lower heat and let simmer for 5 minutes.   Add lemon and lime juice, stir and allow to cool to room temperature. Put into a dispensing bottle and put into the refrigerator.  Ready to use when cooled.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Many Caribbean Rums are so Strong Travelers Are Banned from Bringing Home Some of These Expressions

      The powerful River Antoine Distillery Rum has been a favorite brew on the island of Grenada since 1785.  This wonderful rum is made from fresh sugar cane pressed in the water wheel driven press out behind the distillery.  The rum is distilled in wood fire heated double thumper pot stills.       Production of the crystal-clear brew dates to 1785 and production is powered by a waterwheel - brought over at that time when the British were in control of the island and still producing rum today.

River Antoine Water Wheel
    It's the oldest working waterwheel in the Caribbean and, possibly, the world. The distillation process begins with raw sugar cane, crushed so that the sugary juice can then be left to ferment in huge vats.   It’s then transferred to a giant copper still, and heated over a wooden fire so the liquid boils and then condenses before being drawn off to create a rum that is, staggeringly, up to 89 per cent alcohol by volume.
River High Proof Rums

    But it packs a punch so powerful, the authorities say it’s simply too strong to travel.  This is because of the highly flammable nature of the liquid the airlines require Hazardous Material papers to transport.   Airline regulations mean the famous bottles of rum breach regulations which state that alcohol levels of over 70 per cent ABV are a danger of catching fire should the bottle brake.
Legal to Travel Overproof Rums
     This is not only a problem leaving from Grenada.  Any bottle of rum over 140 proof has the same issue.  There are a lot of 120 to 130 proof rums out there that can legally travel back home with you without the danger of highly flammable spirits.  Jamaica, Cayman Islands, Trinidad, Barbados, Martinique, Guadeloupe, Puerto Rico, Panama, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, Haiti and others all produce overproof rums in the safe to travel range. Most of the time the extra strong rums are for dares rather than regular cocktails, Moonshine is what they are approaching in strength.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Don't Miss the 2017 Miami Boat Show Presented by Progressive Insurance

     You need to be in Miami for the 2017 Miami Boat Show brought to you by Progressive Insurance.   The place to be over President’s Day weekend as more than 100,000 boating enthusiasts from around the globe are expected to flock to the Progressive® Insurance Miami International Boat Show®. Recognized as one of the world’s largest and greatest boat shows, 2017 marks the show’s second year at the iconic Miami Marine Stadium Park & Basin, where they will unveil several new elements, including more boats, more yachts, and a new VIP experience.
     Really important, get your tickets on line in advance of arriving at the show.  This will keep you out of the long lines and allow you to ride the water taxi to the show.  Tickets and reserve parking are available at http://www.miamiboatshow.com/tickets-and-parking .
     This is always a great show for those that have a love for the world of boating and a lot of interesting other offerings.  I always fine something new there for my boats and a chance to see what is new for those in the marine environment, Navionics, motors, accessories and new boats.  A highlight of the 2017 show is an enhanced food & beverage program from Great Performances

     Come to the show by land or sea! Due to the popularity of park-and-ride in 2016 – an estimated 80 percent of attendees parked at designated off site locations and traveled to the show via shuttle bus or water taxi – the Miami Boat Show has improved transportation with even more efficiency.        Water Taxis, Shuttle Buses, Miami-Dade Transit, Parking can get you to the show very efficiently.

Show Layout Map

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Two New Premium Expressions from Diplomatico Join Flagship Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva

    Venezuelan rum producer DUSA maker of the Diplomático brand is launching two new premium expressions. Mantuano and Planas which are aged for up to eight years and up to six years respectively.   These expressions will be joining Diplomático’s “Tradition Range”, including the brand’s flagship Reserva Exclusiva,  a sipping rum aged in small oak casks for up to 12 years.
Diplomatico Planas
     Planas, bottled at 47% abv is a blended white rum distilled in pot stills creating a rare high quality sipping white rum profile.   The named comes from the Planas Valley, Venezuela where the Diplomático distillery is located.
Diplomatico Mantuano
     Mantuana, bottled at 40% abv the names translates to local man and inspired by Don Juancho Nieto Meléndez, the 19th century character that was the inspiration for the creation of Diplomático.   This is a  blended rum aged in white oak casks that previously rested Bourbon and malt whiskey.  The expression blends column still, batch kettle and pot still distillates that were created from the fermentation of sugar cane molasses and honey.

Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva
     Mantuano and Planas both have similar bottle designs to Reserva Exclusiva, featuring the image of Don Juancho Nieto Meléndez on their labels.   “We are very excited to release the new Diplomático Tradition Range, which reflects the brand’s premium positioning and incomparable taste profile,” said José Rafael Ballesteros Meléndez, CEO Diplomático Rum. “It is very important for us to continue to innovate and to contribute to the premiumisation of the rum category.”