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Rums for Trader Vic (and other tiki) Drinks


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#1 Lee Hester

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Posted 08 July 2003 - 01:35 PM

As a fan of Trader Vic Bergeron, his philosophy, restaurants and drinks I am slowly organizing a Trader Vic party. I am trying to stock up for the party and have come up with a list of ingredients I'll need to make a fair cross-section of drinks featured at his restaurants. The mixers I've already ordered from Trader Vic's, but now I'm trying to come up with good rums. I figured I'd seek some advice here!

Among the drinks I'll be set up to do are: Mai Tai, Suffering Bastard, Gun Club Punch, Navy Grog, Scorpion...

The Trader divided rums up into 3 main types:
1. Light bodied dry rums, principally from Puerto Rico
2. Heavy bodied sweet rums, principally from Jamaica
3. Medium rums, principally from the Virgin Islands

He, of course, recognized that there were a multitude of very distinct rums and gave a rundown of rums by country/islands. However, he usually only gave general instructions as to rums for various drinks...

So, my list at this point includes:

A. a light Puerto Rican
B. a dark Jamaican
C. a light Jamaican
D. a Martinique
E. St James Rhum

I am familiar with St James as a brand, but am unsure if the Trader meant the brand... and even if he did, they have several varieties.

Several discussions may follow... including:

a. is the simplistic tripartite typology at all useful?
b. whether there is a perfect "light Puerto Rican" (or "dark Jamaican" and so on) for mixing, or whether even that kind of breakdown is too simplistic.
c. particularly if the answer to "b" above is "Yep. Too simplistic." then we might actually need to discuss which are the perfect rums by drink!

Any help is appreciated. The posts I have seen here are almost uniformly intelligent and informed. It is clear that Mr. Hamilton and some of the other folks here are the new guru's of rum that can pick up where Trader Vic's generation left off and soar on to new heights. I'll be buying Mr. Hamilton's books and adding them to my collection.

#2 JOHN REEKIE

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Posted 22 July 2003 - 09:14 AM

I am suprised that you have not had an answer to this as yet. With all our Bar Owners and Mixoligists in this forum I would have thought that some one would have reached up to pull down their 1940's Trader Vic's Rum Drinks book...... He was very specific as to what rums he used in what drinks. Ie Mai Tai were made with seventeen year old Barbancourt untill he used it all up then changed to another rum. Also most of the Name Brands that he specified are no longer available, yet the distillery or parent company might still be producing similar rums, with new recognisable Brand Names. Its just a matter of looking up the original rum and its type and finding a rum from todays market to substitute it with.

So lets get this Original Trader Vic's Party Going , look up and suggest some rums then we cann all go to the party, in spirit at least.

John Reekie.

#3 babyluck

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Posted 22 July 2003 - 12:40 PM

Lee, you should check out Beachbum Berry's Grog Log & Intoxica. I have both and they are excellent, with great discussions on suggested rums and substitutes for unavailable ones (Cuban). I'm more of a Don the Beachcomber gal myself, but I'll overlook your choice of mentor.

Personally, I use (based on taste, value & availability in my area):

Any white PR rum except Bacardi
Mount Gay or Cockspur
Myer's
Appleton
St. James (St. James is a Martinique rhum agricole)
Bacardi 151 as a poor substitute for Demerara overproof

The introduction to the first book is a little out of date (or inapplicable to the Northeast US) because it talks about Martinique rums being the hardest to find and Demeraras very easy. That has not been my experience -- all the liquor store guys tell me they all used to carry Lemon Hart and they're not sure what happened. I have one who's supposed to be ordering it for me, though.

I'm definitely not an expert, but this list has worked well for me as a foundation for mixing vintage tiki drinks.

(All of the recipes you mentioned except Gun Club Punch are in the first book.)
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#4 Jason Perlow

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Posted 22 July 2003 - 01:45 PM

What vintage tiki drinks use Rhum Agricole?
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#5 babyluck

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Posted 22 July 2003 - 02:34 PM

Is that a trick question?

The only one that comes to mind is the Mai Tai -- Vic supposedly added it in the '50's because the quality of Jamaican rum had gone downhill.

Personally, I drink it straight. :blush:
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#6 Bolivar Petit Corona

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Posted 23 July 2003 - 08:17 AM

Trader Vic's :cool:

#7 JOHN REEKIE

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Posted 25 July 2003 - 09:42 AM

Babyluck.... I think the question was what rum would "Trader Vic" use in the drinks mentioned and be suitable for the party.
Don the Beach Comber had his own style of mixing. and it was not Trader Vics. You also mention six Brand (distillery) name rums without mentioning which Individual names of the rums. As you well know each Brand (distillery) has three or four rums from six months old up to twenty one years old, (and older), with quality and prices varying accordingly. For cocktails and mixed drinks one would not use the youngest rum nor the oldest as this would be a total waste. Also using the same brands five year old would be very different taste to using the same brands two year old.

I would still like to hear what the forum comes up with for the " Trader Vic's Party."

#8 Lee Hester

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Posted 29 July 2003 - 03:38 PM

Thanks to John for getting us going and on-track.

Until he mentioned them, I had forgotten the older Trader Vic's books. I've got most of his books (including a few autographed) but usually only use "Trader Vic's Bartender's Guide Revised" for drink recipes. That book usually only uses generics like I mentioned in the first post, like "Dark Jamaican" or "Light Puerto Rican."

So, I got down "Trader Vic's Rum Cookery and Drinkery" (one of his later books -- 1974) as well as the original 1946 edition of "Trader Vic's Book of Food and Drink." The newer book mostly used generic terms, though he did specify the original "Mai Tai" rum as 17yr old J. Wray and Nephew Jamaican Rum, which he supposedly ran them out of (not Barbancourt), though he clearly was a fan of Barbancourt and specified it and the number of stars for several drinks. I'll bet Barbancourt was what he switched to. He specified Rhum St James at least once. Unfortunately, he doesn't specify rums for any of the drinks I listed in my first post.

In the older book, he is very specific. Unfortunately, he doesn't list any of the key drinks I mentioned above (not even Mai Tai, though he is supposed to have invented it two years earlier) except for the Scorpion. For it he lists Ron Merito or Brugal.

The older book is valuable, in that for each drink he mentions the generic and then a couple of specifics, which I assume he thinks are among the best of the variety.

So, here is a list of rums that you all can comment on. Are they available? Is there something better for mixing?
In some cases (like Sloppy Joe's) he mentions it for a specific drink, but most of these occur over and over in the recipes. In some cases it appears the generics don't necessarily match with the specifics...

Martinique: Rhum Negrita, Rhum Charleston
Dark Jamaican: Red Heart, Sloppy Joe's, Myers's
151 proof Demerara: Lemon Heart
86 proof Demerara: Lemon Heart, Hudson's Bay
unstated proof Demerara: Seigert's
Haitian: Rhum Sarthe
Barbados: Bellows Cockade
Puerto Rican: Ron Merito, Boca Chica, Brugal
123 proof listed instead of a demerara: Havana Club


In the section on rum in the 1946 book, he lists them geographically and provides a long list of preferred brands/versions in each. Slightly shortened it is:
Barbados: Bellows Barbados, Bellows Cockade, several versions of Cockade, Goslings, Lightbourn

Cuba: Bolero, Caney Ron Extra, Carta Camp, Havana Club, Ron Carta Parejo, Ron Lavi, Royal Scarlet, Sloppy Joe's, Bacardi 1873, Bellows Ron Malecon.

British Guiana (Demerara): Booker's Demerara, Hudson's Bay Demerara, Lambs Finest Navy Demerara, Lemon Hart, Southard, Three Diamond, Seigert's Bouquet

Jamaica: Bellow's, Berry's, Burke's, Charlies Royal Reserve, Coruba, Finzi's, J Wray's, Hedges and Butler, Kelly's (several versions), Lamb's, Lemon Hart (several versions), Myers's light vatted, Myers's Mona, Red Heart, Southard's, Trower's Gold Lion.

Martinique: Bellows, Black Head, Rhum St James, Barum, Casa Grazia, Goslings Martinique, Rhum Charleston, Rhum Chauvet, Rhum Risetta, Rhum Negrita

Puerto Rico: Boca Chica, Brugal Gold Label, Brugal White Label, Daiquiri, Ron El Lider, Ron Merito, Ron Rey, Riondo, Ron Valentino (151)

Virgin Islands: Cruzan St. Croix, Government House (Several versions), Old St. Croix



I had a "dress rehearsal" for the grand Trader Vic Party (before John got me to look at the 1946 book) using (from light to dark) Matusalen Platinum, Appletons and Coruba. Any comments on these?


Thanks

#9 baphie

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Posted 29 July 2003 - 04:28 PM

Where the heck are you? First, so I can join the fun and I have a couple of good sources for what can be hard to find rums.

Lemonhart is still around and their 151 Demerara is servicable, if not actually good for overproof rum. It actually has some flavor, unlike Bacardi or other frat bar 151s.

Cadenhead makes an incredible regular proof Demerara, 25 yrs old. It will make an absolutely divine Mai-Tai, but is also 80$/bottle. You better exclaim 'mai tai, ro ai' after that.

For regular rum, I have found that New Orleans own N.O Rum is excellent. It has a complexity and sweetness that really shows in even in fruit juice laden drinks.

Trader Vics also makes Mai Tai mix, which I assume it what you mean when you say your ordered mixers. It is passable, but making up your own fresh is preferable and easy. Speaking of which, Vic's original recipe calls for 'rock candy syrup.' This is a fancy sugar syrup and can be re-created using rock candy crystals (often most available at beer brewing shops where it is used for certain Belgian beers). A better alternative I find is to make my own syrup using unbleached organic sugar or, second option, Sugar-in-the-Raw. The other advantage to either of these options is that molasses elements present in the sugar can compensate for less than great rums.

On your choices - Appleton is very servicable. Can you be more specific about which Appleton?
Coruba is not one I am very familar with. For very dark rum, I tend to use Barbancourt 10 or 12. I absolutely loved one from (I think) Guatemala, but have not been able to find it recently. The important thing is to find one you like drinking straight - the Trader liked for the real rum flavor to come out in the ones that specify dark rums.

Have a great time!

A.

#10 Lee Hester

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Posted 29 July 2003 - 09:33 PM

I've nevr heard of "Trader Vic". Can anyone help me on this one, since he apparently did a lot for rum?



Victor Jules "Trader Vic" Bergeron II (1902-1984) opened "Hinky Dinks" in Oakland in 1932, later renaming it "Trader Vic's." It was noted for its exotic Chinese and later Polynesian Cuisine, but it was perhaps best known for its drinks. With the repeal of prohibition in1933, everyone was experimenting with fancy drinks and Trader Vic did as well, but as he experimented he came to focus on rum and on drinks that were more subtle. His most famous drink is the well-known Mai Tai, which he invented in 1944. His restaurants have entire menus just for rum drinks.

Trader Vic's became a chain of restaurants in the mid 1950's when the Hilton hotel chain asked him to put a bar first in their Seattle Hotel and then in several of their more important properties. The Western chain followed. He also opened some stand alone restaurants. The kitschy tiki bar style of Trader Vic's was less appreciated in the '70's and 80's and the chain declined after Trader Vic's death. I don't know how many Trader Vic's there were at the height, but today Trader Vic's (www.tradervics.com) says there are 21. Locations like Seattle, Dallas, St. Louis, Denver, Honolulu, Boston, Detroit and even the Oakland and San Francisco Trader Vic's are all now closed. A few U.S. locations are still around, like Chicago and Beverly Hills, but their real strength is now overseas like the London location, or the three in Germany, two in Japan and three in the United Arab Emirates?! Evidently tiki kitsch never went out of style overseas.

Trader Vic's fame really grew during World War II. He was unable to serve because of a leg amputated when he was six, but he did what he could for servicemen. His bar become a hangout for naval officers. Through his contacts he was able to make a back-door deal to send free booze to the troops overseas. Though a lot ended up in the officer's clubs, the enlisted men got some too. Many officer's clubs in the pacific were called "Trader Vic's" in his honor.

Trader Vic was quite a character and was well-known for his philanthropy. In particular, he had great empathy for amputees. He first started helping amputees when he found that the care afforded U.S. servicemen with amputations was not what it should be, becoming a outspoken proponent for their care. When he was making a fortune with his restaurants, he made a deal with a prosthetics firm and would hand out chits good for a complete prosthetic to impoverished amputees he found on his many world travels.

He was acerbic and down-to-earth, with a great folksy philosophy. He did not appreciate people "putting on airs." Though he admitted that the standard lists of what-wines-went-with-what might serve as a starting point, he said people should drink what they liked and not what others thought they should like. He believed that liquor was a social lubricant, but that people could and should behave as ladies and gentlemen and not drink "too much." He really believed in having a good time.

Trader Vic Books that I have (there may be more):
Trader Vic's Book of Food and Drink
Trader Vic's Kitchen Kibitzer: The Cookbook for Men
Trader Vic's Pacific Island Cookbook
Trader Vic's Rum Cookery and Drinkery
Trader Vic's Book of Mexican Cookery
Trader Vic's Bartender's Guide
Frankly Speaking: Trader Vic's Own Story, a Candid and Informal Autobiography

#11 Mark Sommelier

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Posted 29 July 2003 - 09:55 PM

I ate several times at the TV's here in Washington, DC. Trader Vic's was Richard Nixon's favorite restaurant. I learned in the gossip columns here that table 64 was his favorite place. We always ate at that table. Best poo-poo platter I ever had.
Mark

#12 John von Pey

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Posted 30 July 2003 - 12:36 AM

I've nevr heard of "Trader Vic". Can anyone help me on this one, since he apparently did a lot for rum?


Trader Vic Books that I have (there may be more):
Trader Vic's Book of Food and Drink
Trader Vic's Kitchen Kibitzer: The Cookbook for Men
Trader Vic's Pacific Island Cookbook
Trader Vic's Rum Cookery and Drinkery
Trader Vic's Book of Mexican Cookery
Trader Vic's Bartender's Guide
Frankly Speaking: Trader Vic's Own Story, a Candid and Informal Autobiography

Thanks for the information Lee! I'm leaving for London in a few hours, and will add some bookstores to the "must visit" list (which includes already liquer stores, rapping bartender's restaurant, and if possible a visit to ctgm...) And yes, I found the adress of Trader Vic's restaurant in London. So if I have some spare time :rolleyes:

#13 JOHN REEKIE

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Posted 30 July 2003 - 09:47 AM

Hello Lee....... That was some answer to some one who did not know about Trader Vic.... all I could add is for that person to find a Trader Vic Restaurant and to try Trader Vic's Drinks and Food. Also to hunt through the WebSite for recipies, food, sauses, mixes, restaurant locations and history of TV, himself.......Thank you for pointing out my very blatent mistake, ie the original rum used in the original Mai Tai. As soon as I had posted it I knew I was wrong. But I do believe that TV had tried and liked and thought Barbancourt suitable for one of the four official Mai Tai recipes. But due to Haiti's internal political problems and having to have a reliable continious sourse for the rum, Babancourt was not chosen. Which is a good thing as the sourse could have dried up for us and we would not have this wonderfull rum today. Limited quantity is better than oversatuation .

Back to Trader Vic - The party.....In canada Trader Vic's Rums are not available. But they have had specific rums blended for their various drinks. Are these "Rums" still available at USA licquor stores or TV Restaurants, and if so had you concidered using them in your rum drink mixes.. Also if these rums are available had you thought of contacting Trader Vic's Office and asking Customer Service which rum they would suggest for the drinks in question.

Your extensive Rum list Island to Island, from ' TV's Book of Food and Drink' 1946, shows some interesting facts.....First 90% of these brands are off the market, but the distillery might still be in operation. and producing rums with different Brand Names...... That Brugal of Puerto Rico had moved to St Croix and recently moved to Dominican republic. So they were a parent company brand not a distillery. in St Croix there rum stock came from the Cruzan Distillery.....That Hudson Bay Company of Canada used to import and sell all across Canada about six Caribbean Rums in the turn of the century There mail order distribution could deliver spirits to any out port or railway stop in the country....This was before Provincial Licqor boards and Stores.....That Goslings, Bermuda, used to import rums from all over the Caribbean then store, blend, bottle these rums in Bermuda. The best blend of these was given a Blackwax Seal....... So these TV listed Goslings rum are part of that list.

Lee.... tell us after the Party how the drinks went down.....
and for thoes who missed it the ' TV ' web site is as follows..... www.tradervics.com

John Reekie.

#14 stickyii

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Posted 16 March 2006 - 08:01 AM

After much searching in the MoR, I came across this thread, which pretty much exactly set out to answer the same questions I had (although not specific to Trader Vic)... after reading through, however, it seems as if the initial question was not really answered.

Nearly all of my favorite cocktail books (by Regan, Haigh, Wondrich, DeGroff, Trader Vic, Baker, etc.) do their best to separate rum into categories, oftentimes by country of origin, but then they get very vague about brands.

I admit I am fairly new to rum, and Grog Log is on the way to enlighten me, but I thought I'd bring this topic back up to the top for more discussion.

What are the best rums for cocktails? I don't have my books in front of me now to list the countries of origin, but I can at least start the list from memory:

- Puerto Rico
- Barbados
- Virgin Islands
- Jamaican
- Cuban
- Martinique
- Haitian
- Guiana

I'm sure some of these have light/dark versions that work differently in different drinks, so please feel free to suggest as you like. And I know I missed some key countries, so feel free to fill those in too. I know preference can obviously vary too, but since I currently have little to none of it (preference), I'd be happy to take others' suggestions of brands and labels to try.

Thanks for any assistance you can provide... I know there are a lot of great minds on here filled with such knowledge.
Rick
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#15 Ed Hamilton

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Posted 16 March 2006 - 06:44 PM

I would start with what is available in your locale. Most cocktails are made with what I call general market rums. You wouldn't mix the best cognac, unless you have money to burn, nor would you drink the cheapest rot gut from your local store. With that in mind here are a few suggestions.

- Puerto Rico Go for the white rums, they are very similar to the colored ones, and in Puerto Rico to serve a dark rum is an insult to your guests. Bacardi, Don Q.
- Barbados Doorly's Five Year Old used to be the standard, but Mount Gay is getting better in the last ten years. Go for Mount Gay Sugar Cane Rum, which is actually made from molasses and marketed as sugar cane brandy in some markets.
- Virgin Islands Cruzan Dark is the rum of choice in the Virgin Islands, use it.
- Jamaican Appleton Dark if the recipe calls for dark Jamaican, otherwise use their white rum.
- Cuban If you can find Havan Club Blanco, go for it, if you can't find it use a light bodied white rum. If the recipe calls for a dark Cuban rum, look for something from the Dominican Republic, not all the Cubans went to Miami or Puerto Rico and since the Dominican Republic is close to Cuba there are a lot of family connections.
- Martinique If the recipe calls for white, use it. If the recipe calls for a dark Martinique rum use a rhum vieux. La Favorite and Neisson are two that are available in the US.
- Haitian Barbancourt is about all you'll find.
- Guyana Look for El Dorado, it's good, heavy and has a lot of character.

It is also worth noting that Trader Vic wrote his book about 50 years ago and rum styles have changed. Experiment and you'll find something you like.
Edward Hamilton


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#16 scheer

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Posted 19 March 2006 - 03:22 PM

What vintage tiki drinks use Rhum Agricole?

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Must be Tiki Ti punch!

#17 mbanu

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Posted 20 March 2006 - 04:03 PM

The Trader divided rums up into 3 main types:
1. Light bodied dry rums, principally from Puerto Rico
2. Heavy bodied sweet rums, principally from Jamaica
3. Medium rums, principally from the Virgin Islands

He, of course, recognized that there were a multitude of very distinct rums and gave a rundown of rums by country/islands.  However, he usually only gave general instructions as to rums for various drinks...

Several discussions may follow... including:

a. is the simplistic tripartite typology at all useful?


Still more or less accurate from a mixed drink perspective, although I'd put some sort of note on overproof vs. regular proof. :biggrin:

b. whether there is a perfect "light Puerto Rican" (or "dark Jamaican" and so on) for mixing, or whether even that kind of breakdown is too simplistic.
c. particularly if the answer to "b" above is "Yep. Too simplistic."  then we might actually need to discuss which are the perfect rums by drink!


Nope, not too simplistic at all. :) People will argue otherwise (especially tiki drink lovers, who tend to like complicated drinks so much that they add extra complexity whether it improves the drink or not), but it's really not rocket science. :)

"light bodied rum" means any unaged or minimally aged rum with a light flavor. If you were being technical, it would probably be a high distillation proof rum. Puerto Rican rum is just pinned because Puerto Rico used to (and still does) make a lot of rum of this style. Usually the sort of rum the average person thinks of when someone says rum.

"heavy bodied rum" means any rum that has a really strong flavor. Technically that would probably suggest a low distillation proof/barrel proof and/or long aging.

"medium bodied rum" means anything in between, for instance aged Puerto-Rican style rum, most modern "Jamaican style" rums, etc.

Edited by mbanu, 20 March 2006 - 04:23 PM.


#18 mkayahara

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 12:08 PM

I'm bumping this because it doesn't seem necessary to start a whole new topic for my question, and because the question relates to a rum I bought to make Mai Tais.

The rum in question is Lemon Hart, and I bought some last week. On the front of the bottle, the label says "Premium Imported Lemon Hart Demerara Rum" and "Product of Guyana". On the back, however, the fine print says "A blend of Guyanese rum with Canadian rum." Is this something that should worry me? Is Lemon Hart in the US an "all-Guyanese" version?

I noticed this in the store, but bought it anyway, since I'm having trouble figuring out what constitutes "dark rum" for use in drinks such as the Mai Tai (or, say a Hurricane). Neither Coruba nor Myer's dark rums are available where I am, and I don't like the massive amount of caramel colour that must be involved in producing Gosling's Black Seal. A Demerara rum seemed like the next best option. My choices here are basically limited to Lemon Hart, Young's Old Sam Demerara (from what I understand, this is a local product) and El Dorado. I hesitate to spend the big bucks on an older El Dorado, but am not sure whether the 5- or 12-year version would work best for my purposes. Can anyone offer advice in this respect?

OK, that ended up more long-winded than I expected. Sorry!
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#19 ctgm

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Posted 24 October 2006 - 03:31 AM

not sure i would use an expensive "sipping" rum in a cocktail. I am sure that others would disagree. If I need a non-white rum I would use something like Mount Gay.

One thing that was a surprise in your post is the bit about blending with Canadian rum. Unless someone can correct me (Ed, Scheer ??), this is 100% against the law. If you say product of Guyana then it has to be 100% Guyanese.

In Europe with wine, if you use grapes from different countries - for example France and Italy in the same bottle - then the wine cannot be called either French or Italian - but has to be called something along the lines of "Wine from the European Union" or something like that. (Possibly "wine made from grapes from the European Union)

#20 mkayahara

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Posted 24 October 2006 - 05:11 AM

Thanks for your input, ctgm. In fact, clause B.02.034(1)(b) of Canada's Food and Drug Regulations allows for the blending of rum from a "Commonwealth Caribbean Country" with Canadian rum to a maximum of 1.5 per cent Canadian rum by volume in the final product. I imagine they avoid running afoul of labelling laws because they clearly state (if in fine print on the back) that it is blended with Canadian rum.

As for using an "expensive sipping" rum in cocktails, I'm less worried about price (within reason) than I am about using something with an appropriate flavour profile. Especially when you consider that, here in New Brunswick, Canada, Lemon Hart is CAD$23.00 a bottle and El Dorado 5-Year is $24.95 - I'm willing to pay the extra $1.95 if it will make a difference in the quality of the drink. (By comparison, Mount Gay is $26.45.)

For Mai Tais, I've been using Gary Regan's recipe in Joy of Mixology, which calls for 1 oz. white rum and 1 oz. dark. I've seen other recipes that call for 2 oz. gold rum, at which point I would probably use Mount Gay or Appleton V/X. It's the dark rum that really throws me, here, because the only consistent definition of dark rum I've seen is "rum that contains ridiculous amounts of caramel colouring to make it look black." Maybe I'll just start using a gold rum I know I like, rather than searching for a good dark rum and promptly mixing it with white rum...
Matthew Kayahara
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#21 mbanu

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Posted 25 October 2006 - 02:09 PM

For Mai Tais, I've been using Gary Regan's recipe in Joy of Mixology, which calls for 1 oz. white rum and 1 oz. dark. I've seen other recipes that call for 2 oz. gold rum, at which point I would probably use Mount Gay or Appleton V/X. It's the dark rum that really throws me, here, because the only consistent definition of dark rum I've seen is "rum that contains ridiculous amounts of caramel colouring to make it look black." Maybe I'll just start using a gold rum I know I like, rather than searching for a good dark rum and promptly mixing it with white rum...

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A mix of 50/50 Pusser's Blue Label and Appleton V/X works well for me.

Edited by mbanu, 25 October 2006 - 02:10 PM.


#22 ludja

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Posted 25 October 2006 - 03:03 PM

Are any Trader Vic afficionados (and more importantly, owners of Trader Vic books) willing to describe the recipe for the Suffering Bastard?

I've found various recipes on the web but they didn't seem to be correct. Once I scribbled down the recipe after stumbling across a Trader Vic book somewhere but I lost that...

Bonus points if you suggest the rums one might use. :smile:

Thanks in advance,

ludja
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#23 stickyii

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Posted 25 October 2006 - 04:22 PM

From Trader Vic's Revised Bartender's Guide

3oz Trader Vic Mai Tai Mix
1oz light Puerto Rican rum
2oz St. James rhum
Lengthwise strip of cucumber peel

Cut lime (not listed in ingredients), squeeze juice into glass with shaved ice. Add goods. Shake. Decorate with cucumber peel, spent lime shell, mint, and a fruit stick.

From Grog Log, by Jeff Berry

1oz lime juice
4oz ginger ale
1 dash Angostura bitters
1oz Bourbon
1oz Gin

Stir with ice, garnish with mint, orange, and maraschino cherry.

Wow... these are a bit different. I can't remember off the top of my head what a good substitute is for Trader Vic's Mai Tai Mix - maybe someone else can chime in.
Rick
Pennsylvania

Kaiser Penguin

#24 eje

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Posted 25 October 2006 - 04:56 PM

[...]
Wow... these are a bit different.  I can't remember off the top of my head what a good substitute is for Trader Vic's Mai Tai Mix - maybe someone else can chime in.

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Vic's Mai Tais are just Rum, Lime, Orgeat, Curacao, and simple.

Trader Vic's Mai Tai Recipes

Though, he is using Mai Tai mix, Rum, and lime over ice for the Mai Tai and the Suffering Bastard!?
---
Erik Ellestad
If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...
Bernal Heights, SF, CA

#25 Ed Hamilton

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Posted 27 October 2006 - 08:36 AM

not sure i would use an expensive "sipping" rum in a cocktail. I am sure that others would disagree. If I need a non-white rum I would use something like Mount Gay.

One thing that was a surprise in your post is the bit about blending with Canadian rum. Unless someone can correct me (Ed, Scheer  ??), this is 100% against the law. If you say product of Guyana then it has to be 100% Guyanese.

In Europe with wine, if you use grapes from different countries - for example France and Italy in the same bottle - then the wine cannot be called either French or Italian - but has to be called something along the lines of "Wine from the European Union" or something like that. (Possibly "wine made from grapes from the European Union)

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First, Canadian liquor laws don't even try to reflect EU wine labeling regulations. These are two very different arenas. Rum sales in Canada are made under a monopoly system controlled by the provincial governments.
Labels don't say 100% 'country of origin' in Canada, but then I've never seen a wine label which claims that the contents are 100% from a particular country, though 100% of the consumers believe what they want to believe.

In Canada, liquor bottlers are given tax incentives if a portion of the product is from Canada. But liquor isn't the only consumable item which benefits from complicated tax incentives. In the US, 100% of an $81,000 BMW certainly isn't made in Germany, or even from German made parts.

But not every bottle of rum sold in Canada is blended with Canadian spirits. If you're willing to take the time to read the label you can see where the spirit was bottled and that will give you some clues to the contents. Certainly a bottle of Guyanese rum, bottled in Guyana, doesn't have any Canadian spirit blended in it.

On the other hand, a bottle of Jamaican rum bottled by a company in Canada probably has some Canadian spirit in the blend.
Edward Hamilton


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The Complete Guide to Rum

When I dream up a better job, I'll take it.

#26 jlo mein

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 05:25 PM

hmmm...my bottle of Appleton VX stated it was bottled in Canada, and I think several others do as well (just don't have them in front of me right now). That means almost all of the rums I have could have Canadian spirits blended in.

I'll have to check when I get home...

#27 KatieLoeb

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 10:48 PM

The Appleton's V/X is my "house pour" rum. I always have that around. The Appleton's white blows the doors off Bacardi when I can find it for a light rum.

I personally like Gosling's Black Seal better than Myers for a dark rum. I just like the real blackstrap molasses-ey taste of it better than the Myers, which I personally find too "sweet" for me. But maybe that's just me. The Gosling's is certainly sweet also, but somehow tastes more "rummy" to me.

Katie M. Loeb
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Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

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Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol


#28 Ed Hamilton

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 09:38 AM

I just like the real blackstrap molasses-ey taste . . .

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Then you owe it to yourself to find some Cruzan Blackstrap Rum, it has the most blackstrap molasses taste of any rum I've tasted.

And Appleton VX is one of their best rums when you consider availability, cost and taste.
Edward Hamilton


Ministry of Rum.com
The Complete Guide to Rum

When I dream up a better job, I'll take it.

#29 jlo mein

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 06:58 PM

Hey I just became a member of Appleton's Rum Academy, and I'm labelled as a Rum Expert now haha...

They send you a membership card with your name on it, as well as a newsletter. I'm sending in two referrals so I can get the free t shirt. :raz:

#30 tikibars

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 05:40 PM

The Appleton's white blows the doors off Bacardi when I can find it for a light rum.

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Yes.

I personally like Gosling's Black Seal better than Myers for a dark rum.

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Yes, but try the Cruzan Black Strap, it is even better than the Goslings.
-James

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