While it’s usually associated with fruity summer cocktails, (preferably served on a sandy Caribbean beach…) I think rum is definitely one of the more warming spirits. Perfect as a comforting tipple in front of the fire now that the clocks have changed, the temperature has dropped, and as my customers tell me regularly, “that’s the nights fair drawin’ in noo…”

They are indeed! So here’s a look at some of our newer offerings in the rum department, and a lovely warm rum drink recipe you can use them in to fend off the winter chill.

Rumbullion!

An award winning spiced rum from Ableforth’s distillery, the same people who produce the very popular bathtub gin. The distillery was founded in 2011 by three friends who took the inspiration for their products from the past and bottle accordingly. Their brown paper and string wrapped bottles really would look at home in any Victorian drinks cabinet.

Rumbullion! is a blend of Caribbean rum, Madagascan vanilla, orange peel, cinnamon, cloves and cardamom.

On the nose: Rich aromas of warming vanilla and zesty orange peel, earthy scents of cardamom, cinnamon and cloves give an almost festive scent to this rum.

On the palate: A burst of citrusy orange, alongside the sweetness of honey and caramelised sugar. Warming notes of cinnamon, toffee, dark treacle and cloves.

On the finish: Long, lingering, rich and smooth. Warming, creamy vanilla with hints of cirus and spice. Perfect for a chilly evening.

Perfect serve: Serve over ice with a premium artisan cola and a juicy wedge of orange to bring out the citrus flavours.

Hoxton Banana

With drinks inspired by the area in which the distillery is located, Hoxton Spirits have a funky London aesthetic and favour interesting but crowd pleasing flavours. Hoxton Banana is their first venture beyond the gin category and uses a blend of pot and column still rums from Nicaragua, Barbados and the Dominican Republic, aged between three and eight years. Both fresh and dried bananas are steeped in the liquid for five weeks prior to bottling to give this rum its’ delicious tropical flavour.

On the nose: Masses of sweet banana fruit with plenty of rich treacle and warming spices.

On the palate: Plenty of banana to the fore on a background of molasses, warming vanilla and spice. Lots of tropical fruit flavour.

On the finish: Lingering flavours of tropical fruits against a slightly dry and spicy finish.

Perfect serve: It has to be a banana daiquiri!

This one will serve 3-4

Combine 2 cups of ice, 2 peeled bananas, ¾ cup of coconut milk, ½ cup banana rum, ¼ cup of lime juice and ¼ cup of sugar syrup in a blender. Pour into chilled glasses and garnish with maraschino cherries and a lime wedge.

Real McCoy 5 Year Old

A five year old rum from the foursquare distillery in Barbados. This spirit is a blend of both copper pot and column still rums aged five years in charred bourbon barrels before bottling. The rum is named for the legendary prohibition era smuggler Bill McCoy, a well known American rum-runner. Unlike many bootleggers at the time, Bill sold his product uncut, clean and without paying a penny to politicians, law enforcement or organised crime for protection. Real McCoy 5yr is an ideal base for cocktails or mixed drinks but interesting enough to be sipped neat or over a few cubes of ice.

On the nose: Comforting vanilla, rich molasses and green apple with hints of tropical banana fruit.

On the palate: Warming cinnamon spice with fresh pear and apple fruit flavours, honeyed sweetness and a hint of wood smoke

On the finish: Long and smooth. Smoky and earthy with oak, chocolate and mocha coffee notes.

Perfect serve: “The McCoy Cocktail”

Pour 50ml of rum into an ice filled glass, add 100ml premium tonic water and a generous squeeze of lime. Stir and garnish with a lime wedge and a dash of nutmeg.

Hot Buttered Rum

It sounds like something out of a well known children’s book about wizards, but this warm rum drink has been around for a very long time and is excellent for staving off the autumn and winter shivers.

Ingredients:

• 1 ½ tbsp very soft butter

• 1tsp brown sugar

• dash ground cinnamon

• dash ground nutmeg

• dash ground allspice

• dash vanilla extract

• 60ml rum

• 150ml hot water (not boiling or you’ll impair the flavour and evaporate the alcohol. Disaster!)

Method:

1. Add the butter, sugar and spices to the bottom of a mug or Irish coffee glass and mix well.

2. Pour in the rum and top up with hot water.

3. Stir well and serve immediately.

You could try making up a batch of the “batter” and keeping it in your fridge so you can have one of these lovely comforting drinks any time you fancy. Just add rum and hot water 🙂

Cheers!