A Guide To Drinking Rum

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Rum Barrel

A Guide To Drinking Rum

Rum is one of the most popular spirits across the globe. It was also a necessity as a trade item in years gone by. This spirit has an extremely long history with the first distillation being carried out in the Caribbean on the sugar plantations during the 17th century.

In recent years we have seen that rum is making a very impressive comeback. Much like gin, new flavours and variations are being produced and it’s becoming a very popular drink once more. Some alcohol experts agree that spiced and flavoured spirits of this kind will become a leading drink for consumers in the upcoming years.

Are you ready for to join the bandwagon for rum and drink it like a pro? If not, we have put together everything you need to know about rum. Use this blog post to brush up on your knowledge ready for chatting with friends down the pub, over your favourite tipple of rum.

What Is Rum?

Rum is defined as a type of brandy. It is distilled from sugarcanes. The spirit contains natural flavour and oils of the sugarcane. There are certain other added notes included such as caramel, vanilla, nutmeg and spice.

What Is Rum Made Of?

This spirit is made simply from sugar. This could be sugar from the cane, or the by-products of cane sugar. This includes things like black treacle or molasses for example. The different age of the drink can be blended to create a more consistent flavour.

Sugarcan being harvested to make Rum

What Does Rum Taste Like?

The underlying flavour of this drink is sweet, toasted sugar. While all rum is made from sugar, a white rum can be dry. Meanwhile, a gold rum will commonly have caramel added to it. Dark rums will often be added on oak which will add wood flavours. This can make the flavour taste very similarly to a scotch whisky. For a different flavour you might want to try navy rum. It is a very strong spirit that is a fruit flavoured rum that is infused with natural juices. Some people also like spiced rum which had natural herbs and spices added.

How Is Rum Made?

There are three different ways that rum can be made. Firstly, it can be made from directly fermenting sugar cane juice. Another way this drink can be made by creating a concentrated syrup from sugar cane and then fermenting. The third method in which this drink can be made is by processing the juice into molasses followed by fermenting.

The most important step in the method of making this drink is properly harvesting the sugar. It needs to be cut close to the ground. While the sugar content is high it must be milled quickly. It must then be boiled, rendered down and have the juice squeezed out.

The process of distillation happens in pot stills. Dependent on the type of rum being made, it may go through the distillation process twice. This raises the alcohol content of the drink. The ageing process can be done from just a few weeks right up to around thirty years.

Isn't Rum A Summer Drink?

When it comes to trying out this drink, it’s important to ignore the marketing. Hundreds of ad campaigns over the years have portrayed this drink as an exclusively summery drink. A drink that should be enjoyed in sunny weather, mixed with coconut or other fruity concoctions. While this drink can be enjoyed in the warm summer months, it can be enjoyed throughout the year. You can pair this spirit with a wide range of ingredients far beyond the summery pineapple and coconut flavours.

Mai Tai Rum Cocktails

The Similarities Between White And Dark Rum

You may have heard from self-professed rum lovers that swear white and dark rum cocktails are very different. They may claim that a white or dark rum cocktail is innately superior from the other and the tastes are worlds apart. However, this is not the case. Both rums are virtually identical in many aspects. The key difference to bear in mind is that the dark rum is filtered with charcoal and will have a smokier flavour.

How To Spot A Quality Rum

To be able to spot a high-quality rum from a distance, you need to rely on your senses. The first thing you need to do to spot a good one is to pour a small amount into a glass and then give it a swirl. If the drink is cloudy in the glass, then it is not a good quality drink.

If you have a high-quality dark rum, it should have a clear amber tint to it. Meanwhile the white version should be completely clear in colour, just like a good vodka would be.

Now it’s time to drink the spirit. Take a mouthful of the spirit and swoosh around your mouth. If you feel an immediate sharp burn, then this is a bad drink and not of good quality.

The Rules For Drinking Rum

This spirit can be enjoyed in various ways. Just like a good whisky, it can be enjoyed with a splash of water or some ice and a slice of lime. If you would prefer to drink it neat, then we recommend that you warm the glass between your hands and then it can be enjoyed neat.

There are other popular ways to enjoy your rum. You could have it with ice, lime and cola for example. Another option is to enjoy the spirit with apple juice, or coconut water if you would prefer. Grapefruit juice and cranberry juice are also well mixed with rum. More recently, ginger beer or ginger ale with dark or spiced rums can be extremely popular.

Popular Rum Cocktails

Whether you prefer your rum frozen or on the rocks, there are a wide selection of rum cocktails that are extremely popular in pubs or to be enjoyed at home. Below we have listed some of the most popular, and our favourite, popular rum cocktails.


Daiquiris are easy to make and even easier to fall in love with. In fact, the Daquiri is one of the most top-selling rum-based cocktails in the world. To make a Daquiri in your home, you will need to mix white rum, lime juice and simple syrup and then strain over ice.

Mai Tai

The Mai Tai is a staple for any Tiki Bar. It is extremely well known and very popular. To make a Mai Tai at home you will need to blend rum, lime juice, almond syrup and orange liqueur before pouring it over crushed ice in a glass.

Pina Colada

Perhaps made more famous by the song, if you like a Pina Colada then you are in good company. It is in the world’s top 50 most popular cocktails. Many people picture this drink when imagining themselves relaxing on the beach, toes in the sand and listening to the sea lapping against the shore. A Pina Colada is often served frozen. It is made up of a combination of white rum, coconut, cream and pineapple juice creating a very enjoyable holiday treat.

Pina Colada Cocktail

Dark N Stormy

The Dark N Stormy cocktail is made of just two ingredients, making it a very simple drink to make at home. It is rum mixed with ginger beer served in a highball glass with ice. If you’re looking to jazz it up, then garnish it simply with a wedge of lime. This cocktail was originally invented in 1920 by sailors, so why not take it to the sea?


The Mojito is a Cuban favourite cocktail. It became more popular in the early 2000’s and the popularity has stayed. The Mojito is currently in the top ten most popular cocktails in the world. If you would like to make a Mojito you need muddle a handful of mint leaves in a glass, add the white rum, lime juice and simple syrup. You then need to add lots of crushed ice before garnishing with a sprig of mint.

Mojito Cocktail

Eggnog Punch

Technically speaking, an eggnog can be spiked with any alcohol. If you are looking to make an easy eggnog punch, then a shop-bought eggnog mixed with rum can work really well. It’s a very popular festive punch that your adult guests will love.

May 22, 2022
By ryan-knighton-2
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