Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Classic Cocktails Using Vitae's Modern Rums


Rum Martini--Yes it has been done before, but rarely is it this good. That is because mass marketed white rums are blended to be as flavorless as possible. Generally a Bacardi Superior Martini is what you'll find in this niche mixology of replicating a classic cocktail with rum. In the past I've broken from this mold to make a Rum Martini with Cotton and Reed's dry spiced rum. The result was a dry tasting and complex Martini that was similar to one made with gin with a dash of orange bitters. I didn't opt for any garnish, but if I had, I would have used a lemon or lime twist. 

My most recent rendition with Vitae's Platinum rum is closer to a Vodka Martini, however. I knew that the clean flavor of Vitae's rums, and the not too sugary body, would work well with a savory garnish like an olive. Going light on the vermouth was a good call. Just like drinking a Vodka Martini, the main spirit is the thing. 

  • 3 oz. Vitae Platinum rum 
  • 1/4 oz. dry vermouth (Dolin used)
  • 1 olive garnish

Combine liquid ingredients in a mixing glass with ice and stir to chill. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with the olive. 

Rum Old Fashioned--It's been done frequently and with much success, but this one is a beauty. Try making an Old Fashioned the traditional way with rich sugar syrup, Angostura bitters, and an orange peel. But make sure that you choose a richly aged rum, not just something that is dark or spiced. Dark rums, especially black strap, are sweetened with molasses, which gives them that dark color. Their flavor will be simply muddy sweetness and ethanol. You should look for a barrel-aged rum with some years on it. These rums are dark from contact with wood and are superior in quality. 

When I first tried Vitae's Barrel Aged Distiller's Reserve rum, I wanted to make Old Fashioneds with it. 

  • 2-3 oz. aged dark or gold rum (Vitae's Barrel Aged Distiller's Reserve used)
  • 1 tsp. brown sugar syrup
  • several dashes Angostura bitters
  • lemon, lime or orange peel

Build cocktail in an Old Fashioned glass by disolving sugar syrup and bitter in the rum by stirring. Then add large ice chunks and continue to stir to allow the cocktail to chill. Twist a fruit zest over the drink and drop it in. 

Aged Rum Manhattan--I've never seen this done before, at least not with only rum as the principal ingredient. But I knew that Vitae's Barrel Aged rum would work fine. It is aged in ex bourbon and wine casks, so it picks up plenty of oak and vanilla notes that make it a good substitute for whiskey. Plus the Manhattan is a wine and spirits cocktail, so everything about Vitae's Barrel Aged rum would work well. And does it ever!

  • 3 oz. aged dark or gold rum
  • 1/2 oz. sweet vermouth 
  • one dash Angostura bitters
  • maraschino cherry

Combine liquid ingredients in a mixing glass with ice. Stir and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Add cherry for garnish. 

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