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Ed Hamilton

eGullet Society staff emeritus
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Everything posted by Ed Hamilton

  1. It looks interesting for a historical look at my favorite spirit, but anyone who knows much about rum, knows that rum was around a long time before Barbados was even colonized by the English. So much for the "undisputed birthplace of rum."
  2. I admit to being prejudiced, but having said that, I couldn't live without 1) a bottle, and now it comes in 4.5 liter boxes in Martinique, of rhum agricole blanc to make ti' punches. A fat lime zest, raw sugar or better yet, sugar cane syrup, and a measure of rhum agricole blanc with which to make the perfect ti' punch. 2) the largest bottle I could find of old rum, Neisson Reserve comes to mind, but there are others, like Cruzan Estate Diamond, Diplomatico, Santa Teresa 1796 and the list could go for longer than you want to read. 3) a bottle of good gin, I don't really have a favorite right now, but there are a few I would avoid. Danmark, or something like that was one of my favorite's but equally important is fresh lime to make a gin and tonic with lime. And then if there's any money left over I'd look for a bottle of cask strength single malt scotch, but I'm flexible. If you have something that you'd like me to try, I'll try anything once, except those flavored alcohols with cheesy labels.
  3. McCormick distills and bottles almost every kind of spirit. Unfortunately, I've yet to find a McCormick product that I'd consider to be superior to almost anything. I wouldn't conisder them necessarily bad, but certainly not worth pursuing unless you just need some alcohol.
  4. Any comments on Schaefer's on the north side? I used to find some real treasures at the Foremost on North ave, but haven't been there in some time. Binny's is really working hard to outdo Sam's.
  5. Well thanks for coming out of the cyber closet. Doorly's XO has been one of my favorites for a long time. At the Newport Boat Show in 2002, Doorly's XO was being served on the rocks and a lot of people couldn't believe it was so good, many thought it was fine whisky. Another of those rums that should be on your list of things to try and add to the rum shelf.
  6. Don't apologize for not being much of a rum fan Jaz, you probably haven't had an opportunity to taste many good sipping rums. But you aren't alone. I'm coming back to the Bay Area next week and look forard to seeing you again.
  7. Negrita hasn't been available for some time, so I'm surprised that Trader Vic's in Chicago is using it, I'll have to go there soon.
  8. Contrary to popular thought, rum, or any spirit, can be aged too long and gain a taste that isn't very nice. Too much wood, too much smoke, and an compound called rancio in the whiskey industry. Having said that, when I was at the Barillito facility in 1994, I tasted some of the rum in the oldest barrel. Unlike most rums, Barillito is aged in large casks, approax. 160 gals, and doesn't suffer from an excess of wood. Of the hundreds of rums I've tasted this was one of the smoothest and most enjoyable I've had the pleasure of consuming. The bad news is that Puerto Rico is a long way from independence and like all spirits aging in barrels in the tropics, every year the barrel is giving some of it's contents to the angels that protect it.
  9. The list of participating rums is growing and more are expected. As soon as I get a link to a more complete list, I'll post it. It's been a long time since I've been to San Diego so I'm particularly interested in seeing what's happened there in the last 20 years. I look forward to seeing you there if you're in the So Cal area.
  10. John Walker downtown. It was in the discount close out bin, so you should hurry.
  11. I believe the reason rum is listed as one of ingredients is that rum is just that one of the ingredients, but since it is refined to more than 96% it can't be labeled as rum in many countries. It is being discontinued in many stores in the US.
  12. The distillery is alive and well. They added a second distillation column last year, but forget finding more of that 9, I thought it was 8, year old rhum agricole. As tasty as it was, it's gone. There is no offical site at this time, the French are a little behind the rest of the planet, but they're busy making rhum, so I'll forgive them. There is some informaion about them at the Caribbean-Spirits website, their importer for the US. If you live in the San Francisco Bay area you can buy La Favorite Rhum Blanc, Ambre and Vieux (not 8 year old) at a number of bars, restaurants and liquor stores. It is also the well brand at The Slanted Door if you are in the area. And David at Enrico's makes a great ti' punch.
  13. I just saw some Stroh in San Francisco and noticed that as opposed to it being touted as rum, rum is listed as one of the ingredients. Interesting approach.
  14. That bottle size isn't allowed in the US so you won't see it there.
  15. Pyrat was designed to be more like Cointreau than rum as we appreciate it. There are some changes in the works, it hasn't been making much money and so it goes. . .
  16. Likewise I've been underwhelmed with most everything I've had from Colombia in the way of rum, but the women are very under appreciated. I seem to recall a distinct licorice flavor that I my palate wasn't refined enough to appreciate.
  17. Kristian, Check the bottle, the bottles of Barbancourt I've seen are 5, 8 and 15 years old, but in any case the 8 yo is my favorite.
  18. Clark Street Ale House aims to please with a good selection of whiskey and rum. The Map Room should be on your list of places to try, but depending on the night, it might be a crapshoot. There are others, but I'll have to wake up first.
  19. Seeing all that good Scotch makes me thirsty but I just had to finish off the bottle of Ron Zacapa Centenario from Guatemala. To be fair it was almost empty and as we all know, when there are only a couple of fingers left in the bottle it needs to be drunk, since even the best alcohols oxidize with age in an almost emptly bottle. Besides I have another full bottle in the cabinet somewhere.
  20. My experience is similar but on the two occasions when I've been questioned about carrying alcohol in my luggage and I've had a copy of the TSA regulations, the conversation quickly changed from agrressive to passive. And I'm confident that discussion boards like egullet are powerful tools in bringing about a positive change. Knowledge is the most powerful weapon created in the short history of man. Clearly the airline employee mentioned above didn't know what he was talking about but without a copy of the law, I was powerless.
  21. Old Monk from Kenya? I've drunk an Old Monk from India but haven't seen one from Kenya, no doubt there are more. You hit Pyrat on the head, not bad as a drink, heavy orange flavor, but as a rum?
  22. Rum makers distill unsavory history into fresh products Doug Frost is a renowned wine sommelier and has written several articles on rum and always includes some interesting notes on the subject.
  23. The TSA website has the regulations, but it's really up to the employee you run into. I don't declare alcohol but wouldn't carry anything over 140 proof on a plane since high proof alcohol is considered hazardous material. Even the TSA recognizes that there are policies and there are laws. A few months ago I saw an airline counter employee take a bottle of vodka from a passenger because he said the FAA prohibited carrying any alcohol. I didn't say anything because I had five liters of 100 proof rum in my bag.
  24. Clear spirits don't necessarily contain fewer congeners - poisons other than the ethanol that we want to drink. Most congeners are formed during the fermentation process and removed during the distillation process, though aging helps change the chemical form of some congeners through oxidation. But the important thing that jackal wrote "it critically depends on their quality." There are vodkas that contain much higher congener levels than some good rums. I've taken to drinking at least one glass of water between every drink and I've been enjoying the morning a lot more than I used to.
  25. Thanks for the input, since I wrote the original post, I've suffered from a couple of colds. I'm not used to the cold weather. I do believe honey is much better than other sugars, and the oils in cinnamon, clove and garlic are also beneficial. Rum is essential, though I do find the occasional single malt acceptable but not found in abundance in my liquor locker. Hot is also a very important ingredient. And I always gargle with warm salt water as soon as I feel a sore throat coming on, followed by at least one rum remedy.
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