A Rum Site

Mountain Dew
Spiced Rum
Bay Rum
A Dominica Distillery
Rum Reading
Rum Quotes
Other Rum Sites

Introduction & History

"Rum is an alcoholic beverage distilled from sugarcane by-products that are produced in the process of manufacturing sugar. Molasses, the thick syrup remaining after sugarcane juice has been crystallized by boiling, is usually used as the basis for rum, although the juice itself, or other sugarcane residues, is also used. The molasses is allowed to ferment, and the ferment is then distilled to produce a clear liquid that is aged in oaken casks. The golden color of some rums results from the absorption of substances from the oak. The darker, heavier Jamaican rums--made for the most part in Jamaica, Barbados, and Guyana -- are produced from a combination of molasses and skimmings from the sugar boiling vats; the darkest, Guyana's Demarara, is produced by very rapid fermentation and is not particularly heavy bodied. The fermentation of other substances in the molasses enhances the liquid's flavor and aroma.

"After distilling, the rum is sometimes darkened by the addition of caramel and is aged from 5 to 7 years. Lighter, drier rums from Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands are more rapidly fermented with cultured yeasts and are aged from 1 to 4 years.

"The rum industry developed in conjunction with the growth of sugar plantations in the West Indies. The English were the first to adopt the drink (its name may be derived from a Devonshire word, Rumbullion, meaning "a great tumult"). Beginning in the 17th century, distilleries operating in New York and New England produced rum from West Indian molasses. Traders used rum profits to buy slaves in Africa; the slaves were sold in the West Indies for cargoes of molasses that became New England rum. The attempt by the British to levy heavy duties on molasses imported from the French and Spanish West Indies was an important factor in pre-Revolutionary colonial unrest in America."

Source: Grolier Encyclopedia


In Dominica, 'spice' is the generic name given to any rum to which a local herb or spice has been added and allowed to impart its particular flavour.

The most common 'spiced' rums are:

Spice is an acquired taste, best drunk in one go...

Macoucherie Rum

With a history dating back to pre-war years, Dominica's major rum distillery has seen up and downs. The Macoucherie Estate has been in the Shillingford family for several generations and is now the only (official) distillery on the island to produce rum from local cane. Not any cane however is up to the job - Macoucherie uses only that grown on its estate.
Cane fields on Macoucherie Estate

Crushing the cane
Producing 10,000 gallons annually, and up to four types of bottled rum, it's a large operation. But the processes are essentially the same as that of the small-scale operation producing the moonshine.

Sales are said to be up, which includes that of the export market.

Rum Reading

Rums of the Eastern Caribbean by Edward Hamilton (ISBN 0964765306), from which the following definition of the British version of proof comes:

"A sample at 50 British proof weighs exactly 12/15 as much as an equal volume of distilled water at 10.6 degrees Celsius. Or, at 87.7 British proof, a sample contains 50% alcohol by volume"

The book is a complete guide to Caribbean rums and entertaining reading as well.

The Complete Guide to Rum also by Edward Hamilton (ISBN 1-57243-205-5) Triumph Books $14.59.

Rum Quote

"There's nought no doubt so much the spirit calms
as rum and true religion"

Lord Byron

Other Rum Sites

Barbados where it all started.
Malibu Rum ... seems like one non-stop party on this site!
Bundaberg Rum from Australia
Barcelo Rum from the Dominican Republic
Celebration DistillationThe home of New Orleans Extra Premium Rum, the only rum made from Louisiana Sugar Cane and the only premium rum distilllery in the continental US.
Petr's Rum Labels Site
The Ministy of Rum
Captain Morgan

For a general overview, try Fun Facts on Alcohol and Drinking

Visit our friends at The Wine Cave Home Page

And for a novel about drinking lots of Rum, see HUNTER S. THOMPSON'S "THE RUM DIARY"

Ask the Expert

For a time, we were pleased to be able to offer authoratitive answers to the many questions posed. With the kind help of Edward Hamilton, author of 'Rums of the Eastern Caribbean' and 'The Complete Guide to Rum' (see our Books section).

Our expert Mr. Hamilton is presently somewhere in the Caribbean (doing research) so we can't answer any questions for the time being. Check back in the near future for an update.

This time: Do you have any information on Coruba Rum? Bill

Edward Says: I am aware of one Coruba rum made by C J Wary in Jamaica. It is a colored rum and popular with young people.

Since Wray doesn't tell me how old this rum is I assume it is not aged a long time. Heavy coloring, this rum is about as dark as Myers, does make the rum smoother and belies the young age of the rum.

Bill adds:

I was able to finally locate a distributor, Heublein Inc of Hartford Conn. It was distributed by a company in New Jersey, but because of its popularity, Heublein has now pick up the distribution.

Coruba Rum is produced by The Rum Company (Jamaica) LTD, Kingston Jamaica. WI. Established 1889

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