Rum is definitely my spirit of choice; I will almost unquestionably pick a cocktail off a menu based on its rum content - but what do I actually know about this alcoholic beverage?
Well, erm, pirates drink it (?) and that’s where my rum knowledge ends!
Dave Marsland is the Drinks Enthusiast. I went along, with the husband in tow, to Dave’s Rum Masterclass, at Lock 91, Deansgate, Manchester.
I’ve blogged about Lock 91 before and it felt just perfect to be snuggled away in one of the cozy little upper-class vintage rooms sipping straight rum.
Obviously Dave was there, 2 bar staff, and about 15 other rum drinkers, which made for a pretty interesting ‘date night’, let me tell you!
Dave took us through the origins of rum (it’s made from sugar canes if you’re interested) as well as explaining what distillation and fermentation actually means. Then it was time to do some tasting!
We tasted each rum in the order shown below. Dave’s advice was to go straight in, sans mixer, to really palate the flavours. However, for the faint hearted (not me!) selections of mixers were provided.
Havana Club (white)
Gosling’s Black Seal
Old J Spiced
I never imagined that rum could be drank straight (same with vodka – no thank you) and I struggled to drink the first two without a mixer (it burns! It burns!). However, by the time we were onto the Black Seal, I was a true rum convert! Kraken really was sooo smooth and easy to drink, whilst the sweet and spicy Old J was just something else!
Then it was time for the Lock91 Bar staff to show off their talents as talk turned to cocktails. We were given four (yes four!) cocktails per couple each featuring a different rum! I tried to write down the names and ingredients of each one but I’ll be honest – I was hammered!
It was interesting that once mixed into a cocktail the rum’s were very difficult to identify.
My conclusion is that if you are going to make cocktails with your rum, stick to the lower priced ones, and if you want to enjoy it on the rocks, go straight for the Kraken!
And the night didn’t end there. If you have ever wondered what all the rums would taste like together in a bloody big pirate’s treasure chest filed with ice and fruit – Lock91 has the answer!
Overall I had a brilliant evening; I learnt so much about rum and Dave’s enthusiasm was infectious. I now take a keen interest in the different types of rum not only in bars and restaurants, but on supermarket shelves too. I’d recommend one of Dave’s master classes to anyone who likes to drink alcohol, and fancies a great night out that’s educational, fun, and a little bit different.