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RumFest Returns for 2019 Aug 18

The UK RumFest 2019 LogoSponsored by Coca-Cola Signature Mixers and featuring masterclasses, seminars and over 400 rums to sip and savour

Trade Show & Conference – Friday 18th October
Consumer Show – Saturday 19th & Sunday 20th October 2019
London’s ILEC, Earl’s Court
rumfest.co.uk

RumFest 2015 - Rum & Chocolate Pairing

With this weekend having coincided with National Rum Day, what better time is there to remind you that the UK RumFest is returning this October to the capital for the nation’s biggest celebration of rum and rum culture.

Last year, RumFest saw over 2,500 visitors descend on London’s Earl’s Court to see some of the biggest names and the most exciting newcomers in the industry. This year promises to be just as impressive. Taking place on Friday 18th October, The RumFest Trade Show & Conference will see new and boutique rum brands showcasing their products to industry professionals, buyers and key decision makers from influential retailers, whilst a panel of experts will be discussing ‘Understanding Rum GI’s, Appellations & PDO’s’ at the third annual RumFest Conference. Registration for the RumFest Trade Show & Conference is open here.

The following day, RumFest’s consumer show will open its doors, welcoming rum bars, brands, mixologists and master blenders, who’ll be presenting a series of workshops, seminars, tastings and demonstrations over two days on 19th and 20th October. The festival, sponsored by Coca-Cola Signature Mixers, will feature over 400 of the most diverse rums from across the globe, all under one roof. There’ll also be food from the Heart & Soul food buffet, and entertainment and dance during the RumFest Carnival hour. For more information and tickets, visit rumfest.co.uk.

The RumFest Trade Show & Conference is the UK’s premier event for professionals in the industry, having provided a platform for emerging, independent and boutique rum brands for well over a decade. The show welcomes some of the biggest names in rum, as well as wholesalers, distributors, buyers and importers for an impressive series of masterclasses, tastings, discussions and debates on some of the hottest topics and biggest issues facing the industry today. This year, head sponsors of RumFest and the RumFest Trade Show & Conference, Coca-Cola Signature Mixers, will be presenting a seminar during the show.

Building on its longstanding reputation as the original mixer, Coca-Cola Signature Mixers are a global first for the brand. Enlisting some of the world’s most influential and innovative mixologists they created four new crafted Coca-Cola Signature Mixers, specifically designed to be paired with premium dark spirits. At Rum Fest 2019, visitors will have the chance to experience each of the four Signature Mixers and attend a free tasting masterclass. In addition, Global Rum Ambassador, Ian Burrell, will be curating a bespoke highball menu pairing the signature mixers with premium rums.

Ana Amura, Senior Brand Manager at Coca-Cola Great Britain, comments:

“As the original mixer, Coca-Cola has always had a history with dark spirits and with the rise of quality mixed drinks, we’re really excited about the launch of Coca-Cola Signature Mixers. There is clearly a demand for quality cocktails and it’s great to be at this year’s RumFest to open up the world of mixology to an even wider audience.”

For the following two days, RumFest’s consumer show will take over the ILEC Conference Centre at London’s Earl’s Court, for an extensive showcase of all things rum. There’ll be brand-led seminars from Mount Gay, Plantation, Worthy Park, Foursquare and more, with samples and tastings coming from Foursquare Exceptional casks, Velier Rums, Rum Java, Daylark 1863, Black Tears Cuban Spiced Rum, Doorlys, Mezan, Appleton Estate, Real McCoy, Mount Gay Rum, Depaz, Green Island Rhums from Mauritius, St Nicholas Abbey and Hampden Estate, amongst others.

RumFest 2018 - Ian Burrell with Rum Drinkers
RumFest Founder & Global Rum Ambassador, Ian Burrel, said:

“Premium Rum has seen incredible growth in the UK over the past few years as consumer learn about the various styles of rum on offer and how to appreciate them. The UK RumFest, since 2007, has been a major contributor to the rise and we are proud to continue educating Rum lovers from across the globe in our 13th year”

The festival will feature over 400 rums to be sipped, savoured and enjoyed in cocktails. This includes an impressive number of the world’s most exclusive rums, which can be sampled with Golden Tot Tokens, the event’s exclusive currency. It will be the first time these super premium rums can be sampled in the UK.

New to the festival this year is the Craft RumFest, showing traditionally made rums. Open to all ticket-holders over the course of the weekend, its purpose is to encourage rum enthusiasts to identify and understand the style of rum they are sipping. All spirits being presented will meet strict criteria, including being 100% pot distilled or distilled in traditional single or double column, and having no additional flavours or spices.

Also exhibiting over the weekend are a number of rum bars – including award-winning tropical tiki bar, Laki Kane and Retro, Polynesian cocktail bar, Trailer Happiness – who’ll be introducing their ‘star-tenders’ to mix show-stopping signature serves.

Elsewhere during the festival, ticket-holders will be able to place bids at the Rum Auction, for premium rums priced from £150 – £3500. There will also be food available throughout the show courtesy of the Heart & Soul food buffet, and entertainment and dancing during the festival’s Carnival hour.

Registration for the RumFest Trade Show & Conference Day is now open to members of the trade and press. To register, please visit http://rumfest.co.uk/boutique-rumfest-registration/

RumFest standard tickets are now on sale from £42.50, which includes access to all areas of the event and tasting from all exhibitors.

Press Release

Rums at the ready for Manchester’s first Rum Festival Jan 19

Manchester Rum Festival LogoManchester’s first ever rum festival is coming to town this year, thanks to freelance drinks curator Dave Marsland, aka the Drinks Enthusiast.

Located at Revolución De Cuba, the festival will be held on Saturday 3rd June, and will boast over 40 types of rum including Bacardi, Chairman’s Reserve, Diplomático, Sailor Jerry and Mezan. Brunches, afterparties and shenanigans galore will mean it’ll be a Caribbean affair from dusk ’til dawn.

Tickets cost £15 for the festival (brunches and afterparties not included) which runs from 12pm-5pm, and include a welcome drink by sponsor Coco Re’al, along with a taster from each of the 15 stalls as you work your way round exploring the top brands.

And if that’s not enough booze for you, a team of mixologists and brand ambassadors will be on hand at the cocktail bar serving up a selection of rum cocktail favourites.*

Dave Marsland said “Rum is a staple within the Manchester bar scene, especially with the popularity of venues such as Revolución De Cuba, so I wanted to celebrate it! There’s so many incredible rum brands I felt the best way to celebrate them would be with a festival.

Manchester Rum Festival - Chairman's Reserve Mai Tai

The festival will host entertainment, themed food and drinks offers and gifts, so we really are going all out, plus there’ll be events running throughout the day to get everyone in Manchester involved. I’m just looking forward to meeting guests on the day and seeing how popular the already much-loved brands become.”

Details for brunches and afterparties and further rum promotions will be announced soon, but here’s how to purchase your ticket to the main festival – www.manchesterrumfestival.com/whats-on

*Prices not included in ticket, this is a normal bar operation.

My Plantation Gran Añejo Rum Journey Oct 03

A few weeks ago I commented on a FB posting of a BBC article about a guy going off on a Rum Journey to track down a legendary Jamaican Rum. It appears that the author, Nick Davis, traipsed high and low around Jamaica like a Canadian Mountie to find his rum. And like any good Mountie, he found his Rum. Now I can appreciate the idea of an adventure, especially when it involves rum and therefore I finished my comment with:

 Personally I like the idea of going on a Rum Journey 🙂

So move forward to last week when an oft-trodden trip to the Whisky Exchange in London to pick up some supplies, started my own Rum Journey.

Plantation Gran Añejo RumOf late in the Charlosa household, Plantation Gran Añejo Guatemala Rum had become the go-to rum for the other half of #RumwiththeMrs. Having all of the qualities of one of Mrs Charlosa’s favourite but somewhat more expensive rums from the same country, but for almost half the price, maintaining a supply of Gran Añejo has always been a bit of a no-brainer. So with the previously purchased bottle lasting no more than a few weeks, I set off to pick up a couple of replacement bottles.

To my surprise, they only had the one bottle left on the shelf. However an even bigger surprise was just around the corner, because when I asked when more stock would be due in, it was pointed out that the Plantation Gran Añejo had changed; that the bottle in my hand was the new blend and that the old “family favourite” had been discontinued with no stock left…

So here was a dilemma; was the last bottle that I’d bought and we’d enjoyed, like there was no tomorrow, the old blend or the new one. You’d think I’d know, but considering I was holding a bottle in my hands and I hadn’t even noticed the difference on the label, how could I remember about the bottle that we’d already put in the recycling bin and had been taken away the day before…

So now my challenge was to try and track down some old stock so at least I could do a taste comparison, both for my own blogging purposes, but also to know whether Mrs Charlosa was going to be happy with the new blend or whether we’d need to find her a new go-to rum for her Rum & Diet Coke’s. And so begun my own Adventurous Plantation Gran Añejo Rum Journey.Gerry's 4th Limited Edition Plantation Rum Guatemala Ice Wine Cask

Now I do wish that this adventure involved a trip to the home of Plantation Rum: Maison Ferrand’s Château de Bonbonnet in the Charentais region of France or even to Guatemala to visit the Industrias Licoreras de Guatemala which is where the rum is originally produced, but that’s not to say that this little adventure wasn’t without peril. So from the confines of my desk I surfed the web looking for alternative suppliers carrying stock.

Despite indicating that the Gran Añejo was out of stock at Gerry’s Wines and Spirits I figured what harm could come of phoning them to confirm. While I may not have lost life or limb, my wallet ended up being lighter following that call. See, it turned out that the Gerry’s 4th Limited Edition Plantation Rum had arrived in that day and it was rum from Guatemala that had been aged for nine months in an Ice Wine Cask. So with my arm twisted I made the perilous journey through the jungle that is the West End of London on a Thursday evening in search of the colourful region that is Old Compton Street. While I may not have found the MacGuffin of my quest, I had in the meantime found something equally valuable. The Gerry’s Limited Plantation Rum’s are highly sort after treasures and with it being Guatemalan Rum and only 450 bottles to the cask I’d struck gold with this find. But I still didn’t have my Plantation Gran Añejo Guatemala Rum…

However, there’s a part to this tale that hasn’t been told yet. Shortly after coming off the phone from Gerry’s I’d called The Drink Shop to check whether the stock that they had listed was the new or the old blend. So after taking a yonder through the warehouse to grab a bottle, the customer services maiden was able to confirm that it had only the word Guatemala written in the red strip on the bottle. So having indicated that I was after two bottles, it turned out that there were just three bottles left. How could I in good conciseness leave one of those little fellows by itself. So after the little ones faced the perils of the courier service, travelling thousands of metres from the depths of Kent to the City of London, it would appear that my adventure is nearly at an end.

I say nearly, because now that I have both the new and old blends of Plantation Gran Añejo Rum, I need to open them up and compare them. But that’s a bedtime story for another day…