Cocktail of the month – Rum

The fourth most popular spirits call in the drinks trade (after vodka, Irish whiskey & gin), rum sales seem set to increase in both volume and value. Little surprise then that as a cocktail constituent rum should be proving itself increasingly popular. We review the cocktail market for rum.
IWSR figures indicate that while total volume in the category declined 3.5% in Ireland in 2020, IWSR is forecasting a 1.5% Category Annual Growth Rate between 2020 to 2025.

IWSR figures indicate that while total volume in the category declined 3.5% in Ireland in 2020, IWSR is forecasting a 1.5% Category Annual Growth Rate between 2020 to 2025.

Following a relatively disastrous year for the drinks industry, it comes as no surprise to discover that rum volumes were down 3.5% here last year to 167,000 cases from 172,500 in 2019.

Rum cocktails through the then shuttered on-trade would have figured prominently in this decline.

In overall terms, the rum category holds around 7% of the country’s most popular spirits purchases but last year would have witnessed some adjustment in this share as the off-trade would have taken up most of the rum-running in sales.


IWSR figures indicate that while total volume in the category declined 3.5% in Ireland in 2020, IWSR is forecasting a 1.5% Category Annual Growth Rate between 2020 to 2025.

And Premium rum brands whether taken neat, with a mixer or in a cocktail have a part to play in this growth.

“Looking at Premium-and-above rum in Ireland, though volume is less than 5% of total rum volume in the country those brands grew by +20.5% last year and are forecasted at +9.3% CAGR 2020-2025,” explains a spokesman for IWSR.

Figures from NielsenIQ suggest that rum’s off-trade sales values were up 27% to €41.1 million in the 52 weeks to the 23rd of May this year.

Taken together with the IWSR figures for the decline in volume, this would suggest that consumers were busily trading up to Premium and Ultra-Premium brands in their purchasing habits during Lockdown.

And rum has potential agreed IWSR’s Research Director Jose Luis Hermoso in a recent report on the potential for Premium spirits following Lockdown when he wrote that, “A lot of work is going into establishing dedicated high-end rum brands without lower-priced brand line extensions”.

Rum cocktails

The future for rum cocktails – both in the on- and off-trades – looks bright too.

As Richard Molloy of NOffLA’s Off-Licence of the Year Molloy’s in Dublin’s Liberties area explained, “The rum area is tipped to grow and be the next ‘Gin’ alongside Tequila. It’s mostly coming from the States and the UK and although a much smaller category, it’s growing.

“We’re increasing our rum range and trying to get more specialist ones. In a year or two we might be at the forefront of a rum explosion.”

Diplomático Rum

Distributed by Dalcssian Wines & Spirits, this Super-Premium rum is renowned as one of the best rums in the world, consistently ranking in the Top Five trending rum brands globally.

It was awarded the Spirit Brand of the Year by Wine Enthusiast, the first rum to have won in this category.

Committed to producing a wholly eco-friendly rum, sustainability and responsibility are at the heart of the Venezuelan family business.

This year Dalcassian launched Diplomático’s Aritisan of Taste global cocktail competition, tasking Irish bartenders with crafting sustainability-focused cocktails and supporting local producers within the community. The regional finals will be held this November with the overall champion winning an all-expenses-paid trip to Venezuela in 2022.

Perfect Serve – Diplomático Dark & Stormy

The Dark & Stormy pairs Diplomático Mantuano & Thomas Henry Ginger Beer, highlighting the rum’s tasting notes & enhancing the overall profile.

50 ml Diplomático Mantuano, 100 ml Thomas Henry Ginger Beer, 10 ml Lime juice.

Serve all ingredients in the copper mule mug, stir with a bar spoon, top-off with ice and a slice of Lime.

Mount Gay unveils new chapter

Honouring the rum tradition through education, discovery and exploration, Mount Gay, the world’s oldest-running rum distillery (established 1703) unveils a new chapter for the brand in 2020.

Harnessing over 300 years of experience, Mount Gay will reset the brand to pay homage to its rich heritage of passing down craft and expertise from rum’s birthplace, Barbados. In doing so, Mount Gay will embrace more transparency, providing an in-depth look into the brand and its rum and will look to the future.

With the introduction of Trudiann Branker in April 2019, the distillery’s – and Barbados’ – first female Master Blender, Mount Gay began a new chapter for the distillery’s history. In her new role, Trudiann revisited Mount Gay’s core blends whilst simultaneously considering the discerning palate of the high-end brown spirit enthusiast and appreciating Mount Gay’s steadfast brand loyalty. As a result she’s created a new blend for Mount Gay Black Barrel and an enhanced blend for Mount Gay XO.

Mount Gay Black Barrel benefits from an older selection of rums being used for the blend, moving to a blend of three to seven year-old rums as opposed to the previous two to seven years, with a higher content of double-distilled pot still rums. The finishing period, still taking place in deeply-charred Bourbon casks, will be extended to six months, greatly lengthened from the previous four-week finishing period. These changes better reflect Black Barrel’s bold and robust flavour.

In addition, she’s also revisited Mount Gay XO where she enriched the blend. XO benefits from a broader palette of rums, individually aged in three different casks – American Whiskey, Bourbon and Cognac – for five to 17 years rather than the previous eight to 15 years.

Throughout the core range, each expression will be placed into new bottles with updated labels intentionally designed to give ultimate transparency to the rum inside, showcasing further detail on casks used, style and tasting notes.

Underpinning the packaging and liquid changes is a refreshed creative platform that promises to honour the genuine rum tradition.

Mount Gay is proudly distributed by Barry & Fitzwilliam.






Consumers remain loyal to the world’s most-awarded rum, Bacardí, which has successfully retained a massive consumer base while also driving recruitment through NPD such as its Flavours range.

As a growing trend towards sweeter cocktails sweeps across Europe, the demand for flavoured spirits continues to grow. With two-thirds of flavoured spirit volume being driven solely by Millennials, there’s growing demand for colourful, Instagram-worthy drinks. These drinks are key to driving consumer choice and trade-up.

Bacardí Raspberry, Coconut and Spiced have all been crafted by the Maestros de Ron who shape and craft all the products in the Bacardí portfolio.

Bacardí Raspberry, a white rum infused with citrus and Raspberry flavours to create the mouth-watering taste mixture of sweet and tart, is aimed at the slightly sweeter palate, seeking to drive the more seasonally-relevant flavours.

Perfect serve – Raspberry Spritz • 37.5ml Bacardí Raspberry • 150ml Lemonade • Garnish: 2 Raspberries on a skewer • Method: Build in a Highball filled to the brim with ice.

Bacardí Coconut, the latest addition to the Bacardí family, answers the call of one of 2020’s fastest-growing beverage trends. The notable surge of Coconut as a global taste profile has led to demand for its more frequent inclusion in drinks. This white rum infused with coconut flavours has an intense yet clean flavour of fresh coconut with a rich tropical aroma.

Perfect serve – Coconut and Pineapple • 50ml Bacardí Coconut • 200ml freshly-squeezed Pineapple juice • Garnish: 2 Lime wedges • Method: Build in a Highball filled to the brim with ice.

Bacardí Spiced delivers the characteristics of an Oak barrel with the essence of a Bourbon or brandy. This easy-to-drink spirit maintains a very distinctive and unmistakable flavour profile.

Perfect serve – Spiced and cola • 37.5ml Bacardí Spiced • 150ml cola •

Method: Build in a Highball filled to the brim with ice.

Sailor Jerry

All Global rights reserved.

Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum is a straight-up no nonsense old-school rum. Back in the day, sailors used to smooth out their rum ration with spices and Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum follows that same tradition. The result is a rum that’s bold and smooth with hints of caramel and Vanilla. A Caribbean Rum blended with 100% natural spices and flavours, Sailor Jerry embodies the ‘All-In’ spirit and unapologetic attitude of the rum’s namesake.

Norman ‘Sailor Jerry’ Collins was a Navy vet who built his reputation inking soldiers and sailors in WWII-era Honolulu where he established his now legendary tattoo parlour.

The label also features the Hula girl, a signature piece of Collins’ tattoo artwork representing those sailors that have visited Hawaii during their time in the Navy.

Why not try our signature serve, ‘Jerry loves Ginger’ bold & smooth as hell!


  • 1 part Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum
  • 3 parts Ginger Beer
  • 2 Lime wedges


Fill a glass with ice and squeeze in two wedges of Lime. Throw in a measure of Sailor Jerry and top with Ginger Beer.








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