FORGOTTEN CASK – Chairman’s Reserve Rum Tasting

Last month, I was lucky enough to be invited to the Forgotten Cask Rum & Cocktail Bar for a Chairman’s Reserve Master Class & Tasting hosted by Michael Glaize.

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Chairman’s Reserve is a blend of double distilled pot still and continuous still rums from the stunning island of St. Lucia. What’s pot still and continuous still I hear you cry! Well, I can’t say I fully understand it all myself, so I have taken slugs from good ol’ Wikipedia to assist me with that answer 😉

Pot Still
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Continuous Still
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Now all the science is out of the way, here are my reviews of all of the rums I tried in order of preference.

5th place:

Chairmans Reserve Finest St Lucia Rum           

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  • On the eyes: Beautifully light golden brown in colour
  • On the nose: Really strong on the ethanol front – which I am not a big fan of.
  • On the tongue: It has all the elements of a tasty rum, but ultimately overly woody for my liking, with a raisin after taste. There is a bit of an afterburn to it also, which I am never a fan of.

If I may be so bold, I could totally see this rum being used as an awesome mixer.

4th place:

St Lucia Distillers 1931 fifth Edition

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  • On the eyes: Yummy burnt caramel in colour
  • On the nose: The ethanol is not as over bearing as Rum, which is a relief. I can actually pick up the scent of toffee caramel and what could the possibly be some tropical fruit, possibly banana and orange?
  • On the tongue: It’s a lot drier then I expected, it smells a lot juicer than it tastes- not a bad thing at all, just a little surprise. I can taste the caramel I smelt as well as the fruits, but on the tongue there is definitely an oakiness to it… and there goes that after burn.

This is a pretty rich rum which I imagine would be rather nice as a sipping rum.

3rd place:

St Lucia Distillers 1931 First Edition

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  • On the eyes: Light amber in colour, which seemed to glisten in my glass.
  • On the nose: Rich, fruity with a slight hint of coca.
  • On the tongue: This rum was rather fragrant: Orange peel, vanilla and coca are the tones that really stood out to me. Along with that, it was really bloody smooth. As much as I hate to say this, it actually reminded me of a Terry’s Chocolate Orange – I know… I hang my head in shame. Oh, and there was not much of an after burn. Yay!

This is a very expensive tasting rum, considering my comparing it to a British chocolate. I would happily add this to my rum collection.

2nd place:

Chairmans Reserve Spiced Rum

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  • On the eyes: Deep amber in colour.
  • On the nose: A yummy mix of cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla and coconut.
  • On the tongue: Incredibly moreish! There is an explosion of spices and sweetness that leave you wanting just one more sip. Not overbearingly sweet like some spiced rums but a little bit on the clove side that had me a little thrown. None the less, a beautiful spiced rum that I will be running back to again and again.

This has got to be my favourite spiced rum at the moment. Since I tasted it in London last year, I have not been able to drink anything else. I adore it.

1st place:

Chairmans Reserve The Forgotten Cask

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  • On the eyes: Deep amber in colour.
  • On the nose: Another perfect marriage of vanilla and caramel with the soothing warmth of spice.
  • On the tongue: YES! This is the rum I have been waiting for! Perfectly balanced: sweet, chocolaty, spicy and smoky. Incredibly smooth with a ridiculously rich depth to it – I honestly wish I could dive into this glass!

This rum has changed the game for me. This is the first rum I have come across that I could sit and sip on until the cows come home. What a pleasant surprise Chairman’s.

Thank you for a fantastic night Forgotten Cask Rum & Cocktail Bar, I will be sure to be back soon.

Cauliflower Hotel – The Forgotten Cask Rum Cocktail Bar 123 Botany Rd, Waterloo, 2017 Sydney, Australia

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Photography © by Kara’s Rum Quest – Copyright: All rights reserved.

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This article is posted on karasrumquest.com – All rights reserved – Copyright © 2017.

BARON SAMEDI SPICED FIRST IMPRESSIONS | Kara’s Rum Quest

HELLO MY FELLOW RUM LOVERS 🍹

Today me and Dougal are reviewing the most advertised rum I have seen so far in 2017, Campari’s Baron Samedi Spiced! You honestly can’t look at any social media page without seeing this rum across it, so I had to go get me some 🙂

Like all of my reviews, they are 100% my own opinion… let me know your thoughts on my review in the comments section below and let me know if there’s other rums out there you would like me to try.

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PAPA GEDE’S BAR- Tiki Goes Walkabout

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So, last Monday was fun. As part of World Class Cocktail week, Papa Gede’s Bar held a Tiki Goes Walkabout night at their amazing bar! This was the first time I ever set foot in this bar and what a delight it was. But this post is not about the bar itself (that is yet to come), but the amazingly put together tiki classics using nothing but aussie ingredients.

We drank wattle seed Fog Cutters, Rosella syrup Mai Tai’s and my first ever Zombie made with the delicious addition of quandong. ‘What are those!’, I hear you cry! Well, I honestly had not idea myself, but thankfully the awesome duo, Joshua Ng and Ben Ingall spent the time explaining to us what each ingredient was and what it added to our cocktails – Thank you guys for not making us feel like dumb asses when it came to answering our questions.

So, I can tell you are all just dying to know which cocktail I liked the most? Well you’re about to find out but before I get to that, I just want to state that all the cocktails were amazing! Honestly, they were, but I did have an order of preference which I will get to in 3…2…1…

3rd place:

 Mai Tai with Rosella Syrup

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Originally from Africa, Wild Rosella, also known as ‘wild hibiscus’, is now considered native throughout parts of Queensland and northern Australia. Blood red in colour and tart in taste, this plant is an amazingly versatile ingredient, which is known and loved around Australia.

Made with Pampero Anejo rum and Rosella flower syrup, this rum was sweet and delicious. It was a beautiful deep ruby colour (which I imagine is from the rosella syrup itself) and had the soft tones of raspberry and plum. I could not really taste much of the rum itself which was a shame, but that didn’t really upset me too much as it was such a beautiful cocktail to not only drink but to look at.

The only draw back for me was that it was a little too sweet. This is not necessary a bad thing if you like to have just one cocktail… but seeing as I am a more than one cocktail kinda’ gal, the sweetness was just a little too much for me. I still drank it though ;-D

2nd place:

Fog Cutter with wattle seed

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A dietary pillar of Indigenous Australians for over 40,000 years, Wattleseed was traditionally ground and used to make a type of flour. With a nutty, roasted coffee aroma, with touches of sweet spice, raisins and chocolate, this seed is a welcome addition to anything it is added to.

Legend has it, if you are a bit foggy headed, this cocktail will be able to cut right through it. Well, as it was a Monday night and I had been at work all day, I was looking forward to some fog cutting but alas, where there are highs, there are lows, so I was pretty scared as to how I would feel the next day. Like, seriously, this cocktail not only had Ron Zacapa 23 in it, but Tanqueray gin and Cognac. I had every reason to be cautious!

Not to anyone’s surprise, this cocktail was delicious. It was a beautiful mix of sweet and sour with a hint of spice- which I adored. The added element of the roasted wattle seeds on top where also the bizness! If I was not so cautious of a Tuesday hangover, I could have probably gone for three of four more!

I’ll have to keep an eye out for this next time I am looking at a cocktail list!

1st place

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The Zombie with Quandong

These glossy, bright, crimson fruits have been a staple for the Pitjantjatjara people for over 50,000 years. Sweet tasting with a slightly sour and salty aftertaste, this fruit has a mild aroma of dry lentils with some earthy fermented touches.

This was the cocktail I was most scared of. I’ve heard many a tale about the havoc a Zombie can have of a person who is not well rehearsed in the drinkage department. Surely that can’t be legal?

So, what’s in this cocktail? Well, what ain’t in this cocktail is more the question. With equal measures of Pampero Anejo and Pampero Blanco rum, brandy and a dash of absinth (you can see why I was scared), this beast arrived in a hollowed out pineapple with flaming Quandong on top- watch those eye brows!

As expected, this cocktail packed a punch, but in all the right ways. You could taste the rum like a mofo, but their richness, along with the tartness of the Grapefruit and the sweetness of Quandong syrup tied this cocktail together perfectly. Adding to that, the smell the burning Quandong gave off was also to die for! The whole thing was a sensory overload and a great way to end the night!

Thanks for a wonderful night Papa Gede, I will be back soon!

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Papa Gede’s Bar 348 Kent St, Sydney NSW 2000

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Photography © by Kara’s Rum Quest – Copyright: All rights reserved.

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This article is posted on karasrumquest.com – All rights reserved – Copyright © 2017.

DRINKS WITH… NIKITA WARD

I’ve met some really interesting folk so far on my little rum quest. Whenever I get a positive response to my meeting request, I’m always super grateful. In saying that, not a day goes by where I don’t worry about getting a “fuck off you weirdo” response to my invites – which I’m happy to say I have not received… yet!

Anyway, when I sent my request to the lovely Nikita Ward, I did not realise that gin was her thang – what, not EVERYONE’S life revolves around rum like mine? Fear not, I don’t discriminate!

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PS40 is where we agreed to meet; an amazing little cocktail bar that I’ve been keen to check out for a while. I arrived a little earlier than expected (which sadly meant I interrupted Nikita eating her dinner) but Nikita didn’t seem to mind in the slightest. In fact, she greeted me like I had known her for years, grabbed me a stool up next to her, fixed me a drink (an amazing rum and coke made with Plantation OFTD Rum and their amazing, in-house produced wattle cola) and we got crackalacking!

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I am always so curious how most people start off in this industry. It varies from person to person and Nikita is no exception.

My first degree was in fine arts and my second degree was in secondary education, so after a brief stint bar tending during uni, I went on to be a teacher! I taught art and dark room photography in Kalamunda High School but then realised you can’t drink and teach at the same time… and plus kids are really fucking mean! So, I moved to Sydney and right back to hospitality!

It’s at that point; I knew this was going to be a bloody fun interview…

After I finished my degree I got a job at a restaurant/ bar. I remember watching the guys behind the bar making up drinks and I thought that looks really fucking cool! You don’t have to touch food, you don’t have to walk around as much as the waitresses and you get to hang out in the bar! I used to badger them every day. Every time they made up a drink I was right there, wanting to know everything that was going in to it. The boys would also let me come in and muck around when it was quiet, which was great. I loved it, wanted to do it full time… so I did!

There’s always one point in your life you can look back at and go, “yeah, I really got my shit together there”. For Nikita, there were two:

Hazy Rose and The Rook played a huge part in helping me get my shit together. During this time, I took part in World Class and was introduced to a lot of people that work in the industry here in Sydney. I then moved on to an ambassador role with William Grant & Sonsat this point, Nikita shows me her Sailor Jerry tattoos on her elbows and I honestly died… in a good way – and then I went on to help open Jangling Jacks as a bar consultant, now I work as a brand ambassador for The West Winds Gin! Phew!

Like that point, there is always a certain person who (whether they know it or not) turns into your mentor.

 My dear friend, Mitch Bushell really inspired me in this industry. Seeing him as a bartender and seeing him, as a brand ambassador is actually pretty amazing. He is just so professional and has such enthusiasm for this industry. It’s hard not to be in awe of him. He always goes that extra mile and has such an incredible work ethic that has influenced how I go about my work. I am incredibly grateful to have him in my life!

Nikita’s middle name is Chardonnay; she adores wine and is a brand ambassador for The West Winds Gin … but what about the rum?

 Like most bartenders, a daiquiri was the first cocktail I ever learnt to make and after that, at Hula Bula Bar in Perth is where I learnt the rest about rum. I worked there for a good two and half years and together we would smash out nearly 5000 cocktails every month. Also, here is where I also had my most interesting rum experience, one of the boys was mucking around with something called Gunpowder rum…it definitely …interesting to say the least….

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 We wrapped up the interview and I thanked Nikita relentlessly for her time, (and apologised profusely for cutting into her dinner) but before I left we decided to make a gin/rum cocktail – Come on, it was pretty inevitable that this would happen!

I must admit, I was a little nervous. Gin has never agreed with me but I was intrigued. The lovely James Snelgrove, who you will see shooting the breeze behind the PS40 bar, made us a very yummy rendition of a Suffering Bastard. It was honestly gorgeous! So, for your taste buds pleasure, I noted the recipe for you all the try at home.

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All hail, The Suffering Bastard

  •  Plantation 3 star white rum
  • The West Winds Gin- The Cutlass (which is made with lots of Australian elements, including cinnamon myrtle, lemon myrtle and Australian bush tomato)
  • Lime cordial or fresh lime and sugar
  • PS Blackstrap Ginger Soda
  • Angostura bitters

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 More information at www.thewestwindsgin.com

You can buy The West Winds Gin at all good alcohol retailers such as Dan Murphy’s, Vintage Cellars, Camperdown Cellars etc.

TheWestWindsGins

     PS40
     2/40 King St, 
     Sydney NSW 2000

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Photography © by Kara’s Rum Quest – Copyright: All rights reserved.

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This article is posted on karasrumquest.com – All rights reserved – Copyright © 2017.

 

GOOD FOR WHAT AILS YOU!

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It’s been a little over a week since I landed back home in sunny Sydney from my month long rum travel  – god it feels so good to be back in my own bed! Annoyingly though, half way through the last leg of my trip in London, I was struck down with a cold and only went and bloody lost my voice – not the best when I only ever come to London to see my family and friends once every two years! Cue my aunt fixing me up a glass of Hot Toddy (whisky, lemon, honey and water), which was surprisingly really tasty and super soothing on my throat.

Now I am back home, I have been on a mission to mock up my own delicious, rum based Hot Toddy to soothe all future sore throats. It took quite a bit of perfecting, but I am pleased to introduce you all to my little baby:

Kara’s Rum Toddy

  • 1-2 tsp lemon juice
  • 60ml water
  • 2tsp Manuka honey
  • 60ml Bacardi Ocho 8 Year Old Rum
  • Cinnamon stick
  • Grating of Nutmeg

1. Place all your spices and lemon peel into a small pan.

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2.      Pour water into said pan and begin to gently simmer over a low heat.

3.      Add your honey into the pan once it has begun to simmer- I use Manuka honey for it’s healing properties.

4.      Pour in your choice of rum – I chose Bacardi Ocho 8 Year Old Rum for this due to its very smooth and fruity tones.

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5.      Pour your Toddy into a heat proof glass- feel free to taste for sweetness.

6.      Top with a little nutmeg, breathe that bad-boy in deeply and enjoy.

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What did you think guys. How did my Toddy compare to all the others you have tried? Leave me a message below as I would love to know 🍹

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Photography © by Kara’s Rum Quest – Copyright: All rights reserved.

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This article is posted on karasrumquest.com – All rights reserved – Copyright © 2016.