This is how you enjoy the finer notes of the amber nectar
What's the most sociable spirit of all time? Well, thanks to the 400 (yes, four hundred) person live Twitter tasting session that happened across the UK this week, it looks like it could well be rum.
A group of 50 rum fans gathered in The Shard in London to sample the delights of Appleton Estate Jamaican Rum in a bit of a merry session that was also broadcast on Periscope – and this rum old bunch were joined on Twitter by hundreds of other lovers of the drink, who had been sent the spirit previously to enjoy along with the hosts.
From the orange peel in the signature blend, to the chocolate and molasses notes of the finer vintages, it was a bit of an exploration into all the lush flavours and scents that make up the amber nectar. And with a few (OK, a lot) of cocktails alongside the tasters – including the classic Mai Tai cocktail – it was all to celebrate the launch of RumFest this year, which takes place this weekend (October 17 and 18) in Earls Court.
RumFest is actually the world's largest Rum Festival, which shows-off more than 400 rare and amazing blends of the drink from across the globe. Add in a heap of tastings, cocktails, food stalls and even a bit of Carnivale dancing, and it looks we've got a bit of a party on our hands.
So why is there so much love for rum? Appleton Estate Jamaican Rum senior blender, David Morrison reckons it's because it's such a social drink, it brings people together in a way that other spirits might not: “In Jamaica we mainly drink rum in social occasions and with friends – literally everything we do includes rum somehow. And that's what rum brings to the spirit world, it's not uptight, it's not a spirit that's just serious, it's fun.”
And it's not all just about drinking the juice, as David says. It's also used loads in cooking, too: “Rum is used a lot in cooking in Jamaica, sauces and marinades for cooking meat – beef or chicken. The 12-year-old rum goes really well with something like beef. We also bake a lot with rum, like with Christmas cakes – with currants, prunes and raisins that are soaked in rum.”
Meanwhile, David's got a new tip for a killer rum cocktail: “I like to drink it with chilled coconut water, we call that an Epic in Jamaica. It's the most refreshing drink you'll ever taste.”
Coconut water, rum … what's not to love? Definitely one we'll be trying this weekend.
RumFest is part of #RumWeek, running throughout London from October 12-18. For more details and tickets to RumFest, see rumfest.co.uk
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