Until now, we know that rum is a delicious liquor, obtained through the fermentation, distillation and aging of sugar cane in wooden barrels for periods of time that vary according to the manufacturer, usually oak. But where does this distillate come from? Today we will tell you a little more about the history of one of the most consumed beverages in the world

History and origins of rum

The precursors of rum date back to ancient times. It is believed that the development of fermented beverages from sugar cane occurred in ancient Greece and later came from there. A close example is the drink called “Mortal.” Produced by the people of Malaysia, rum dates back thousands of years. Marco Polo also once said in the fourteenth century that a “very good sugar wine” had been offered to him in Persia, what is now modern Iran. A similar liquor was made in the Spanish region of Granada when it was dominated by the Arabs in the 11th century, who had brought this plant from India. The first rum distillation in the Caribbean took place on sugar cane plantations in the 17th century. After the French and British settled in the Caribbean area, more specifically in the Antilles, they adopted its cultivation and subsequent transformation.

¿Rum, Rhum or Ron?

On the other hand, the oldest documents where rum is mentioned date from the year 1650 found in Barbados, where rum was known by the terms kill-devil (which means kill the devil) or rumbullion (whose meaning corresponds to “A great tumult”) this last word is of English origin. Almost two decades later, by 1667 the drink was known as rum, from here is derived what is known in Spanish as rum, while in French the liquor is called rhum.

For the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, rum appeared as a product of great importance and economic impact for the islands of the Caribbean, from where it was exported to different countries in Europe.

Rum was used as an element of commerce in the negotiations of skins with Native Americans and the exchange of slaves, gold or ivory in Africa. For many years enslaved Africans were purchased with rum — slaves were purchased from African chiefs and shipped to the Caribbean to harvest sugar cane, which was turned to molasses and then rum, which was then shipped back to Africa to purchase more slaves.

Initially rum was a harsh drink, “kill devil” probably being a very appropriate description, but over time quality improved and it started to be traded internationally.

The British began to import it to Europe, where its consumption spread. Today this alcoholic beverage is made in more than thirty countries, which put their particular stamp on them, being the most valued rums are Cuban and Caribbean.

So now that we brought you up to date with what rum is and its own dark n’ stormy history it’s time to
dive in and get to know more about a premium rum that you can find in the U.K.

Where to buy rum online?

Nomentu gives you this option, rum Roble Viejo, it is a premium Aged Golden Rum,  made in Venezuela from 100% sugar cane molasses.