Rum – Jamaica’s Spirit.

rumRum – Jamaica’s Spirit.

Rum plays an important economic role in many Caribbean islands.

It is a product of sugar cane production and is mostly derived from molasses. Slaves working on sugar estates were the first to discover that when molasses started to ferment it become more enjoyable and inebriating. Upon learning this supervisors decided to distil and market it.


was popularized by English entrepreneurs worldwide, but became very profitable when the British Admiralty decided to allocate a daily ration replacing brandy with rum to all navy sailors in 1655.

Although many countries produce rum (Fiji, Mexico, Guyana, the Philippines, India, Reunion islands, Mauritius, South Africa, Venezuela, Haiti, and French dependencies) Caribbean countries are the biggest and most important suppliers of North American markets.

Of all Caribbean countries, Jamaica’s rum is the largest and best marketed in the U.S.A., Canada and the United Kingdom.

Indians or Chinese may have been the first peoples to distil spirits refining the crude methods used by Malay people from Southeast Asia.

Tadeo Alderottti at the School of Salerno, Italy, developed the principles of fractional distillation in the 12th century, which was improved in the following century. His discovery resulted in purer and better tasting distillates.

Once rum is distilled either in alembic or columnar stills, it must be barrel aged. The longer the rum is aged (within time limits) the smoother it becomes. In the process of barrel aging, alcohol evaporates at a rate of two to two-and-a-half per cent per annum, thus rendering the distillate more flavourful, but also more expensive, due to loss of volume and capital invested.

There are no aging standards or minimum or maximum levels. Generally, alcohol levels vary between 38 – 75 per cent ABV.

In Mexico, rum must be aged for a minimum of eight months; in Colombia it must contain 50 per cent ABV, and in Chile and Venezuela 40. Some distilleries in Jamaica produce over proof rums at 75.5 per cent ABV.

French like dark rums derived from fermented sugar cane juice, and call it rhum agricole. On the other hand, English enjoy dark molasses rums from Jamaica, an island they administered for a long time.

Appleton Estate, the historical and innovative Jamaican distillery has been producing rum since 1749 and adheres to the strictest guidelines of rum-barrel aging defined by Scottish/English law.

The age of each rum quality is prominently stated on each bottle and is that of the youngest in the blend.

Appleton Estates sugar plantation and distillery is owned by Wray and Nephew Ltd. And produces a range of rums:

Appleton Estate Reserve
Appleton Estate VX
Appleton estate Eight years old
Appleton estate Extra 12 year old
Appleton Estate 30 years old
Appleton Estate Master Blender’s Legacy
Appleton Estate Exclusive (available at the distillery only)

Of all the above, 30 year old Appleton Estate rum is the most intriguing and enjoyable. The master blender selects the best eight-year old rums, blends them, and returns the blend to barrels to age for 22 more years for “marrying”.

The result is this unique dual aging process us unmatched in taste, character and smoothness. It is not only smooth but also aromatic smelling of exotic spices; it has a flavour of many dried fruits, and refinement and elegance with a long aftertaste.

There are only 1440 bottles globally of this very rare 30-year-old rum, of which 644 were shipped to Canada (Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Prince Edward island, Newfoundland).

Enjoying this rum

in a snifter is an experience you won’t soon forget.


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