Based in Metro, Atlanta, Paul Senft is a spirit educator focused on rum and cocktail history. His love of travel, an interest in history, and study of rum, let him to founding Rumjourney.com. This later led him to becoming a freelance writer covering where he currently writes two rum reviews for Got Rum? Magazine and at least one article every month as opportunities and time allows. 2020 has not been a year that permitted him to host many seminars or tasting events, but as we all move beyond the challenges of COVID 19 he hopes we can return to those events in late 2021.
Rum Journey Social Media:
2020 was a year full of ups and downs for everyone, but the rum companies did not disappoint. Collectively, they released one solid product after another, giving us a good reason to explore this lovely spirit. This made picking three top rums difficult, but my three choices all stood out in my mind due to their unique flavor profiles, the way they evolved and elevated rum in the spirit industry.
Privateer New England White Rum
Of the minimally aged rums I tasted during the year this is one I have happily returned to comparing and contrasting it to similar rums. From the aroma to the palate there is a lovely complexity to this rum that makes it stand out and deliver a quality cocktail experiences. Privateer Distillery is part of the vanguard of companies creating high quality American rums and with this as their entry level product I expect great things from them in the future.
The Boutique-Y Rum Company Blended Rum #1
I absolutely love it when I sit down to review a rum with certain expectations and find those blown away. That is exactly what happened with Boutique-Y Rum Company Blended Rum #1. A blend of nine-year-old Jamaican Pot and Column Still rums, this product is bottled at 55% ABV. The robust flavor profile embodied all the things I love about rums from Jamaica, the funky fruity, mineral rich flavors just made my day and a fun one to share with the few people we have entertained this year.
When I heard that Global Rum Ambassador Ian Burrell was working on a rum, I found myself intrigued. Equiano is the spirit industries first blend of African and Caribbean rums with rums blended together from the Grey’s Distillery in Mauritius and Foursquare Rum Distillery in Barbados. The rum was a truly elevated flavor experience and met or surpassed any expectation I may have had considering the names and reputations involved. Studying the history of Olaudah Equiano, the man who inspired the rums name helped complete the overall experience of the product and made it a true standout for 2020.
At the end of 2019 I was hoping that we would continue to see a positive evolution in the industry and this year did not disappoint us. From Don Q 7, Appleton 8, Plantation Isle of Fiji, and all the releases from Foursquare we certainly had a positive reason to drink and explore the beloved spirit rum in 2020. Hoping we see more of the same in 2021!