A Beginner’s Guide to Rum: Types and Uses

Ah yes, rum, the sugarcane-based spirit we all know and love. Regardless of whether or not you’re an avid fan of alcoholic beverages, you can’t deny the appeal of rum. It stands out from other types of alcohol with its sweet, nectarous taste which is bound to give you that sugar rush you’re craving. If you’re anything like me and don’t really like the taste of alcohol but like the way it makes you feel because it helps you relax, then rum is definitely an option you should consider.

If you’re looking to venture into the homemade rum business or if you simply want to know more about this widely-used and beloved drink, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve compiled a comprehensive guide to answer all of your burning questions and lay down the basics of rum types and uses.

How Is Rum Made?

Basically, rum is a spirit made from sugarcane, sugarcane syrup or other sugarcane by-products such as molasses and then fermented and distilled. As is the case with all alcoholic drinks, it’s fermented with yeast in open fermentation vats, usually for six to seven days. Once it’s fermented, the concoction is then placed in a heated pot for distillation or separating the alcohol from the water. After it’s distilled, it’s placed in barrels or other stainless steel caskets and tanks for “aging”, a process which should last at least one year until the rum is mature.

rum brewing
source: createdigital.org.au

What Are the Main Types of Rum?

Quite expectedly and not surprisingly at all, rum comes in a few different types and a range of different styles. Here’s a quick breakdown of the basic ones.

White Rum

White (or light) rum is mainly stored in oak barrels and the colour is removed using filtering, hence the name. It’s the most commonly used component of many cocktails, including Pina Coladas, mojitos and basically, any other rum-based drink served with an umbrella. Apart from being the lightest type in colour, it’s also the lightest in terms of taste and has a bit of a sweeter flavour than the rest.

Gold Rum

The name is a dead giveaway really since gold rum has a golden hue and caramel colouring to it. It’s also stored in wooden barrels and containers to give it that distinct sweet and savoury flavour which is a little richer when compared to white rum.

gold rum
source: distiller.com

Dark Rum

Dark rum is a different story since it’s the type that’s normally aged the most. Its intense complex flavour and dark complexion are the result of the heavy use of molasses and sometimes even double distillation. It’s a tad darker than its gold rum counterpart with a very strong taste as well.

Flavoured Rum

We all like to add a personal touch to everything, don’t we? Using rich rum flavoring to add some spice to your beverages is exactly what you need to do to tailor the drink to your needs and preferences. There are numerous rum flavoring kits that, when mixed according to the instructions, will produce a mouth-watering and smooth feel to your rum that will undoubtedly leave an impression on both you and your tastebuds.

Rum flavoring produces a satisfying mix of cane sugars with no extra preservations. Little really goes a long way here as a few drops of flavouring are enough for up to 3 litres of rum. If left unopened, the essence has a relatively long shelf life so you won’t have to worry about it going bad too soon.

If you’re unsure of where to begin, you can start off with the classic Aussie gold rum which has a distinctive “burnt sugar” taste and complex oak aromas. If you’re searching for a more refreshing taste, then opt for a coconut-flavoured kit that has a lighter taste and feel. Make sure you follow the pre-included recipe to get the most out of your rum flavouring kit and make it a pleasant experience.

different type of rums
source: goodtastemagazines.co.uk

Another advantage to rum essence is the fact that you can use it when preparing delicious cakes, cookies and other desserts. In this way, you’re able to enjoy the sweet and sugary taste of rum in your meals as well. Choose a flavour that will effortlessly complement your dish and leave room for some bold experimentation. Honestly, what more could you ask for?

How to Properly Store Your Liquor?

As is the case with all distilled spirits, it’s important to keep them in a dry and cool spot in your home. Simply put, if the temperatures begin to rise, it can make the alcohol oxidise more quickly and start to lose its taste and colour. Obviously, avoiding the sun helps too since it can easily spoil your liquor.

You may be wondering, should I freeze my liquor to help preserve it? There’s no right or wrong here, it all comes down to personal preference. Since most of us do like to ice our drinks, it might be a good idea to throw a bottle or two in the freezer about an hour before your next big backyard barbecue.

What Are the Health Benefits of Drinking Rum?

drinking rum
source: delish.com

Drinking moderate amounts of rum can actually be quite beneficial for your overall well-being. To start off with, it can give you a strong and healthy heart, significantly lowering the risk of cardiovascular diseases and issues in the future. Studies show that it also helps regulate cholesterol levels in your bloodstream.

Another, maybe less-known fact, is that rum can help combat and fend off the symptoms of the common cold and alleviate any discomfort caused by a sore throat. Because of its antiseptic and antibacterial properties, it can serve as a natural remedy to treat the flu.

And last but not least, rum helps you de-stress and relax. Feeling the liquor course through your veins has a calming and soothing effect on your nervous system which basically acts as a tranquillizer and antidepressant. And lord knows you need some rest after all the long hours you’ve been pulling in at work. And taking a sip of rum is the perfect way to do that.