iven the numerous unusual products released in the past few
years, it’s not often that folks in spirits world are surprised by
a new launch, but the recent announcement of a version of
Captain Morgan Spiced Rum finished in Sherry casks did
raise eyebrows. More importantly, though, it marks a significant
signpost in the expansion of the spiced rum sub-category, more of-
ten thought of as a party drink for post-graduate frat boys.
It’s been a remarkable few years for spiced rums, as the category
has been stretched with brands boasting higher proof, different flavor
profiles, a range of price points and some groundbreaking imagery.
Case in point: Kraken, the fast-growing rum that recently grabbed
consumer and advertising industry attention with its remarkable
three-dimensional billboards in Chicago, the Kraken itself slithering
its giant tentacle into an apartment to grab a potential customer.
Both activities are part of the continuing efforts by brands
to stand out in an increasingly crowded field, which of late has
been led by a flotilla of nautical characters. Captain Morgan,
Admiral Nelson’s, Sailor Jerry, Blackheart and Blackbeard have
New brands, different proofs, added flavors — spiced rum stretches its wings
Spice is Right
by Miguel Olmedo
Aretsky’s Patroon
in NYC
While white rums are the standard pick for
simple rum drinks, mixologists are increasingly
tapping spiced and aged expressions to add
richness and complexity to cocktails. No Regrets,
pictured here, is based on “Santa Teresa 1796”
Rum, plus Aperol, Punt e Mes Vermouth and a
dash of orange bitters.
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