One thing I’ve loved about doing a cocktail each week has been the discovery of new brands. I won’t deny that my trips to the local liquor store can be sort of mundane…I know the brands I like and have a tendency to use them over and over. I was fortunate to be asked to try a bottle of Atlantico Rum and that tasting, combined with the scent of fall in the air and some fresh pumpkin puree in the fridge, well they seemed perfect for crafting a fall cocktail…it would have been perfect for waiting for goblins to arrive at our door as well as the upcoming Thanksgiving Day festivities in America.
When the folks with Atlantico Rum inquired as to whether I would like to try their dark rum…of course I said yes…and I’m so glad that I did! There is something about dark rum I love…and wonder why I so often head for the white/clear version but that is changing. Just opening the bottle of this rum was almost enough; the scent is intoxicating and I knew it was going to be perfect for this cocktail.
Atlantico is a blend of molasses based rums (heavier style) and fresh cane juiced rums (lighter style) from the Dominican Republic. The molasses gives the rum more body and richness, with the cane juice providing lighter, more delicate tones. It’s aging process however is unique in the rum production world. The molasses and cane juice rums are aged separately for 2-3 years but are then blended together for a further 2 years. Once finished, it is placed into a solera aging system for up to 15 years. For a proper solera aging process, barrels of rum of different ages are stacked on top of each other, the oldest on the bottom, and the youngest on the top. When it is time to bottle, only a small percentage of the bottom (the oldest) barrels’ volume will be used. The empty space created by this drawing-off will be filled with rum from the level above, and those barrels will be filled with the level above them, and onwards and upwards, while the barrels on the top-level will be topped up with new rum.
Before bottling, a small amount of Aguardiente (commonly known as fire water) is added to the blend to give it a unique tasting profile. Once bottled, the founders personally inspect, hand number and initial each bottle before shipping. The whole process from start to finish is done by hand; even the bottle and labeling are beautiful. I can not lie; this is my new favorite rum!
I received a bottle of their Reserva and the scent was a good indicator of what was to come. Bold vanilla aromas on the nose with a light sweetness; perfect for my foray into pumpkin!
I’m funny about pumpkin, well, if funny is that I don’t go nuts over it each fall. I like a good pumpkin pie with the best of them…on Thanksgiving day. Still, my senses do not crave pumpkin in every form imaginable so I thought it fitting that my homage to the ‘Great Pumpkin’ come in the form of a cocktail. It was a risk I won’t deny but I really loved this. Everything was subtle and that’s how I like it. Not too strong with rum, not too sweet and just the right touch of pumpkin. That bit of cinnamon on top sealed the deal; this is a sure winner for fall; everyone loved it!