3 Things You Should Know About Rum Before Drinking It

Imagine you could go on an inspirational journey through the Caribbean, learn about their history of rum production, while island hopping with a glass of rum in hand. We can all dream…

Seeing that few us will ever be granted such an opportunity, let’s educate ourselves with some fun rum facts that will make Hemingway proud.

Rum is made from sugar cane

Sugar cane grows best in warm, tropical climates, like South America and the Caribbean. Once the sugar cane juice is extracted, it can be turned into molasses or kept in its raw juice form. On its own, it has a sweet, grassy taste that gives you a major sugar rush. Mixed with yeast and water, it begins the fermentation process.

Rum has something in common with whisky

After the fermentation process, rum is distilled to remove congeners. That’s the bad stuff you don’t want in your cocktail. After that, the alcohol is often aged in American whiskey barrels. Why? When making bourbon, the law goes that you can only use new oak barrels to age the alcohol. These oak barrels are then passed down to rum companies, where they live a happy life aging the good stuff.

There’s a lot of fire involved

A good rum has a broad spectrum of flavors, from caramel and vanilla to smoke and earth. How do rum makers achieve this complexity? Fire!  Machines that are essentially giant flame-throwers char the insides of the oak barrels, imparting a toasty flavor on the rum aged inside.

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