As warmer weather tries its best to reveal itself, we can't help but get excited for some of our favorite seasonal drinks. A warm, sunny day is the perfect time to enjoy a mojito, piña colada, or a simple Cuba Libre. And while days at the beach are still weeks and weeks away, Minibar can help you get in the right mindset with our great selection of rums.
The historical and cultural influence of rum goes beyond pirates and beaches and is unrivaled by any other spirit. Invented in the 17th century by African-born slaves in the Caribbean who discovered that molasses -- a byproduct of sugarcane -- could be fermented, rum became wildly popular in Colonial America. This resulted in the infamous triangular trade, where the exchange of slaves, molasses, and rum gave the Colonies its most prosperous industry. It was the disruption of this trade that played a large role in the American Revolution.
Beyond America, rum also has a rich history with the British Royal Navy. As part of their compensation, British sailors were given a daily ration of brandy. After capturing the island of Jamaica in 1655, this liquor ration changed from brandy to rum, a tradition that continued until 1970.
Rum is most often made from molasses, though there are those made from fresh sugarcane juice. Determined by its aging process, a rum's color ranges from light to dark. Those aged in steel tanks maintain a clear color, giving us white rum perfect for our favorite cocktails. Those placed in oak barrels yield a golden or dark rum, with a longer aging process deepening the color and resulting in a rich flavor that is best enjoyed on the rocks (yet, still great in a mixed drink).
Here are our picks for white, gold, and dark rum.