At the recent Boutique Bar Show in Manchester BarLifeUK tried some great new products hitting the UK bar scene.
There will be more news on the show in the coming days but in the meantime we thought we’d bring you the skinny on one of a few new products to join the Speciality Brands portfolio – Smith & Cross Traditional Jamaican Rum.
BarLifeUK first heard about this rum from the Hayman Distillers last year at Tales of the Cocktail when they were nominated in the Best New Spirit category at the Spirited Awards (with the same level of success as us as it turned out!). We then got to try it over at Bar Convent Berlin in October where it went one step further and won the Best New Spirit award.
One of the reasons for this quick rise to prominence is the surge in popularity of punches and the resultant need for traditional style of spirits from the late 19th and early 20th century. In David Wondrich’s excellent book PUNCH (a review here) Smith & Cross features in many of the cocktails for this very reason.
The rum itself is a mix of Wedderburn and Plummer pot still distillates aiming to recreate the flavourful and aromatic style that made Jamaica rum famous back in the day. It certainly isn’t afraid of packing a punch (sorry…) being bottled at 57% abv navy strength.
Whilst a lot of the talk around the brand is Punch focused (and we did have a try of a lovely concoction Skippy had put together at the show) we are more excited about the prospect of it in a Mai Tai. Several bars including The Liars Club in Manchester and London Cocktail Club, Shaftesbury Avenue are already using Smith & Cross combined with a lighter rum in their recipes and we can see that trend spreading pretty quickly.
If you would like to get your hands on a bottle or ten then speak to Speciality Drinks on 020 8838 9367 or visit their website