By Doc Lawrence
Tailgating season down here is synonymous with college football, a ritual combining sports with food and beverages. While whiskey and in particular Bourbon are hot items today, other distilled spirits are very popular and retain their connections with the masses. Rum is one of these.
|Papa's Rum & Coca-Cola|
Ernest Hemingway contributed mightily to the exalted place rum has in our culture. With Delta Airlines set to launch direct flights daily to Havana (including my home in Atlanta), rum based cocktails will predictably appear on menus.
I was introduced to one in particular labeled Papa’s Pilar Rum. Named after Hemingway’s fishing cruiser (which was named after the Gypsy fighter in For Whom the Bell Tolls), I enjoyed the dark version. However there is a light rum under the same name.
|Papa Aboard the Pilar|
I found the rum to be near perfect as a Cuba Libre, basically rum and Coca-Cola with lime juice. The subtle cinnamon, anise, vanilla, caramel, citrus and brown sugar components blend seamlessly with the Atlanta-born soft drink. For added authenticity, use Key limes.
Papa’s Pilar Rum is approved by Hemingway’s estate and is a blend of rums from the United States, Caribbean and Central America, aged in bourbon and port wine barrels and finished in sherry casks. The bottle is distinctive and the ornate bottle cap is something I will keep.
For tailgating, Papa’s Pilar Rum will become a centerpiece of conversation. It makes a mighty fine Daiquiri and Mojito as well.
Mr. Hemingway would be proud.