Omnivore - How to celebrate National Rum Day 2012

Tips from the Minister of Rum and more

Today is National Rum Day, haven't you heard? As if we needed an excuse to drink this venerable cane spirit. But before you reach for the Captain and Coke, let's consult Ed Hamilton, the Minister of Rum himself, for suggestions on how to celebrate. Hamilton has been researching the rums of the Caribbean for more than 15 years. He's also written several books on rum, and is the author of one of, if not the, most comprehensive websites dedicated to any spirit: The Ministry of Rum. Here are a few tips from Hamilton's post on National Rum Day 2012:

1. Celebrate the diversity of rum with something you haven’t tried before.

2. Educate yourself about a rum you haven’t tried before.

3. Invite a friend to share some rum with you.

4. Ask your bartender what they recommend.

And how will the Minister be celebrating?

My first drink of the day will be a 'ti punch made with rhum agricole. Then I’ll look for something to eat and a rum punch made with something that has been aged, but not aged too long. After dinner it will be time for a rum old fashioned or something aged in a glass with a little water.

If cocktails are more your speed, here is Imbibe's collection of 8 Cocktails For National Rum Day. Dining out? Here's a roundup of five rum cocktails that are just a hop, skip, and a jump away:

Pura Vida
Louisiana Pine
Berkshire Mountain Ragged Mountain Rum, lime, Cynar, watermelon, Angostura Bitters, salt

Leon's Full Service
Monkey Business
Ron Zacapa 23yr. Guatemalan rum, sour honey, banana, Punt e Mes, Bittermens Mole Bitters

4th & Swift
The Other Shore
Ginger-infused rum, basil, lemon, Lemongrass-Black Sesame Syrup, Meyer Lemon Tincture, pink peppercorns

Trade Route
Scarlet Ibis Rum, Boomsma Genever, Antico Carpano, Cherry Heering, Batavia Arrack, Jamaica #1 Bitters 11

the Sound Table
The Privateer
White rum, joven mezcal, Smith & Cross Navy Proof Rum, agave, lemon juice, Angostura float