The world’s largest festival dedicated to rum and tropical culture is an undisputable success after welcoming over 7,000 rum-fans through its doors.
This year’s event moved to the larger Olympic venue to fulfill demand from thirsty rum fans and supporters. Proving to be a shrewd move, this weekend’s event was full to the brim from start to finish, with more visitors than ever before, sipping and sampling over 400 of the rarest and most delicious rum brands from around the world.
Visitors had their taste buds tantalized from the delights of the Tropical Food Market whilst receiving the Ultimate Rum Education through the broad variety of seminars and workshops available. Full details of the event can be found via the UK RumFest website.
UK RumFest is the ultimate Carnival Rum Experience and year on year expands its fanbase becoming a legendary event within the UK and further confirming that Rum is not just a drink; it’s a way of life.
Over the course of the weekend over 90,000 tots of rum were consumed equating to over1,500 bottles and many brands, including Admiral Vernon’s Old J Spiced Rum, sold out entirely.
UK RumFest provides not just the platform for brands to sell large amounts of product but also raises brand awareness within the growing rum trade.
Meanwhile the trade-only Boutique RumFest, now in its second year and running alongside the main event, had this year expanded to both days due to rum’s growing popularity and the subsequent trend of smaller brands emerging on the market.
This platform is an invaluable tool for emerging distillers to be exposed to key industry figures from importers to wholesalers to press, and gives attendees a real insight into this burgoening spirit.
Cocktails flowed througout UK RumFest with each exhibitor concocting their own mouthwatering inventions from rum punches to fruity daiquiris.
The Coco Re’al and Pusser’s rum “Christmas Colada” was one of the most popular tipples of the festival, whilst Barcardi’s sophisticated rum martini kept the VIP area fully satisfied over the weekend.
In the Cocktail Theatre the world’s greatest mixologists went head-to-head in intense battles to be crowned winners, whilst the demonstrations showcased to the public how to make these delicious drinks at home using the finest ingredients.
In addition to tasting and savouring this tropical spirit, UK RumFest is also designed to educate merrymakers with the Rum University hosting a number of bespoke and fascinating seminars and master classes intended to explore the spirit in more depth.
For example, Ian Burrel’s (Global Rum Ambassador and UK RumFest founder) unveiled the Angostura Rum Map on the Saturday outlining the manufacturing of rum across the world, whilst drinks historians Anastasia Miller andJarred Brown explored the Golden Age of Cuban Cocktails, dispelling the myths that surround their origins and proving the extent of their influence on bar culture around the globe.
Meanwhile the Ron Zacapa rum and chocolate pairing tasters were one of the highlights of the festival, whilst the Tropical Food Market went down a storm with Taste of Barbados Tortuga Rum Cakes also being a sell-out success.
Comments from a sample of exhibitors at UK RumFest:
“RumFest is essential for our industry. We launched R. St Barth last year at the Boutique Rum Fest, and have been overwhelmed by the response and support from the industry and public. UK RumFest is the best platform for us to raise the profile of our product, but also Rum overall.”
Mikael Silvestre, Rhum St Barth
“For Taste Of Barbados, this was certainly the best RumFest we have participated in, and wouldn’t be far off our most successful exhibition of 2012”.
Peter Martin, Taste of Barbados
“RumFest was, as always, was the best show of the year for El Dorado Rums. It was great to see so many regular faces that attend every year, as well as all the ‘beginners’ who were exploring the category and amazed at the variety of rums on offer.”
Stephanie Holt, El Dorado
“RumFest 2012 was our 3rd year and proved the busiest yet for my brands Coco Re’al and Pusser’s rum. We handed out over 3000 “Christmas Colada” cocktails (described by many as “The drink of the show”) as well as over 1,500 neat Pussers rum samples. We have gained great brand awareness from RumFest as we are a relatively small brands in the scheme of things.”
Peter Thornton, Coco Re’al coconut puree
Coco Re’al coconut puree
“UK Rumfest 2012 was a highly successful event for Wenlock Spring – 2,000 litres of Wenlock Spring were consumed! We feel that the event has opened doors for Wenlock Spring within the drinks industry – and we look forward to future events.”
Matthew Orme, Director of Wenlock Spring
“RumFest is an ideal platform for Brugal to showcase our range and engage with our target consumers and members of the trade. This year’s event was a great success for Brugal, we sampled a huge number of consumers and were able to capture their details for future dialogue through social media. As always a fun filled and energetic event!”
Sarah Bell, Brugal Brand Manager
“The UK Rum Fest is not only a perfect venue to showcase your brands, but also provides the guests with a full-on “rum experience” from entertainment to education, satisfying the connoisseur and the rum lover alike.”
Yisell Muxo, Don Q Marketing Director
“Rumfest was a great event for us to showcase to UK consumers the delights of this fabulous Caribbean lager. Given the fact that is now available through independent retailers and Tesco this is indeed helping to satisfy the long held wish of the UK’s Bajan communities to be able to buy Banks in the UK.”
Richard Bateson of The Craft Beer Company
Comments from a sample of exhibitors at Boutique RumFest:
“The Boutique Rumfest gave us a brilliant opportunity to showcase our brand new rum, Pirate’s Grog. We received lots of great feedback and were able to develop our contact base, which we hope will prove to be instrumental in carving our future.”
Beth Jones (Marketing Director of Pirate’s Grog Rum)
Legendario was officially launched in the UK at Boutique Rumfest, which was a huge success for us. The overall response to the Legendario range of rums was incredible.”
Tim Brown, Director of rum distribution