Talks & Tastings At RumFest

This weekend RumFest returns to celebrate its 10th anniversary and the talks and tastings sessions look mighty impressive.

If you’ve been to RumFest before you will know that a lot of the fun comes from moving between all the various stands and drinks offerings that the rum companies put on. Fear not, that has not changed. rumfest

Once again the big brands have been joined by lesser known brands to ensure there is a drink for everyone (as long as you like rum of course…. if not I’d stop reading this now if I were you) on offer.

However it is the educational side of the show that has caught our eye. Not only will you learn stuff but you will get to hear it from some of the rum industries biggest and most talented names, as well as sampling some amazing rums, often available for the first time in the UK.

The full list of talks can be found on the RumFest website but we have highlighted some of our favourites below.

Saturday October 22nd

12:30 – 1:15 (Seminar Room 1)
Rare Rums Hosted by Global Rum Ambassador Ian Burrell

Ian is offering up 6 rare and expensive rums for you to sip and savour while he teaches you all about them. To make it even better he is being joined by Steve Remsberg from the US who has one of the rarest private rum collections in the world.

1:45 – 2:30 (Seminar Room 1)
Diplomatico Rum Tasting (World Exclusive)

If you hadn’t heard Diplomatico are re-launching their range later this year. You will be able to not only hear why from their Master Blender but also try various Diplomatico rums, including being amongst the first to taste Diplomatico Mantuano which is replacing Reserva. (Also taking place on Sunday at the same time in the Tasting Suite)

1:45 – 2:30 (Tasting Suite)
Whiskies influenced by Rums with Dave Broom

The bearded wonder is giving everyone a break from Rum with a tasting of Whiskies inspired by them. He’ll also be promoting….. sorry ‘making references from’ his new book The Rum Manual.

4:15 – 5:00 (Seminar Room 1)
El Dorado Rum Masterclass with Master Distiller, Shaun Caleb

We were lucky enough to meet Shaun Caleb a few years ago in Guyana however this is the first time in 10 years he has visited the UK. He is a fascinating person to listen to and will be tasting the El Dorado range right from the 3 year old to the 21 year old.

Sunday October 23rd

12:30 – 1:15 (Seminar Room 1)
Mount Gay Rum Masterclass with Master Blender Allen Smith

Another Rum expert we have been lucky enough to not only meet but blend with, is Mount Gay’s Allen Smith. Spending time with him is like being involved in the best science class of all time. He is in the country to offer the first tasting in the UK of their brand new pure Pot Still and Column Distillate rums. (Also taking place on Saturday at 3:00)

2:00 – 2:45 (Seminar Room 1)
Rums of Venezuela (DOC… Controlled Designation of Origin)

The 45 minutes tasting session will introduce participants to appreciate the quality of four different rums certified by the D.O.C. label (–Controlled Designation of Origin-.) and learn about COVENIN standards. These parameters specify the production process that must be followed for a spirit to be classified as rum and bear the D.O.C. Ron de Venezuela official designation; they also stipulate an obligatory minimum two years ageing in oak barrels, a 40% alcohol content and the use of sugarcane grown in Venezuela.

3:00 – 3:45 (Tasting Suite)
Introductory Level Aroma Masterclass with Kim Lahiri Aroma Academy

For those less experienced at tasting rums or spirits in general this is a real must attend. The Aroma Academy will take you through the nosing and tasting process and teach you to ‘Nose like a professional’. (Also taking place same time and place on Saturday)

There is plenty more going on with a room dedicated just to Agricole Rum and another for Velier tasting their amazing range of rare rums on both days.

All sessions are free on the day but you run the risk of missing out on a seat. If you are really keen on any sessions in particular you can reserve a seat beforehand on the RumFest website for just £5, which considering the level of talks is an absolute bargain in our book.



Saturday 22nd October & Sunday 23rd October
Saturday 12 – 6pm and Sunday 12 – 5pm

ILEC Conference Centre
47 Lillie Road

Nearest tubes West Brompton (2 min walk) or Earls Court (10 min walk)