In 1703, a man named John Sober (no, really, Sober) inherited what is now known as Mount Gay rum, a distillery that got its name thanks to a guy John asked to help him out with the venture, Sir John Gay.
Gay helped streamline the distillation process and helped craft what we know today as rum. Mount Gay was the first rum producer out there, and the distillery has been continuously making rum since at least 1703 (that’s when the oldest known records of rum production are currently, however, production may have started even earlier).
Rum is made from water, yeast, and sugar cane (or its byproducts), and sugar cane just happens to grown amazingly in Barbados. Barbados also has an amazing water supply. Water on the island is filtered through coral limestone in the ground, resulting in naturally-pure, mineral-rich water. Mount Gay has actually been using the exact same well since 1703.
Mount Gay’s iconic rum is made using a combination of pot stills and a column still, tons of barrel-aging, and the nose of its Master Blender, Allen Smith.
We recently had the opportunity to check out Mount Gay’s sugar cane fields and still, and create our own unique blend of Mount Gay with its Master Blender. Take a look at the gallery above for some of the highlights.
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When you visit Barbados, most Mount Gay visitors just get to see its Visitors Center. We were able to go a little deeper and visit Mount Gay's sugar cane fields, as well as see its stills in person.
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Each sugar cane field is marked with one of these.
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Mount Gay has been using the same well for its water since its launch in 1703.
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The water the Mount Gay is all coral filtered. This is a cave underground Barbados where water has been filtered through the coral.
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This part of Harrison Cave is called "the village" because it looks like it might be a group of people.
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One of Mount Gay's pot stills.
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Within Mount Gay we were able to see some of its rum in open fermentation.
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Mount Gay's rum starts as sugar cane that is then turned into molasses.
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Mount Gay uses both pot stills and a column still in its rum production. Most of its rums are a blend of rum from both.
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