You can admit it. When you think of rum, you think of Bacardi Silver. Rum is probably a spirit you never think of purchasing. I used to feel the same way—until I tried really good aged rum in South America. After that, I was hooked. Rum, like whiskey gets better with age.
When I saw Flooded Fox Den of Forest Grove, Oregon was aging rum right here in Oregon I wanted to find out more. Scot Lester, owner of the distillery answer a few questions.
Can you tell us about the name “Búsqueda”?
Búsqueda means “the search” in Spanish. My wife is from Puerto Rico so we frequently visit the island and stay at a lovely place overlooking El Yunque, the only rainforest in the United States. This lovely mountain is one of the places where Juan Ponce de Leon searched for gold. When we set to make an aged rum, we wanted to offer a great Northwest-made rum.
This search was not as hard as Ponce de Leon’s, but what we found is surely as precious as what he sought. The tropical plants on the label reflect those from the magical El Yunque forest.
What made you decide to make an aged rum?
I love to enjoy a nice aged rum on the rocks while sitting next to the fireplace. I am especially fond of the depth of flavors that are found in the aged rums produced in the Caribbean and South America. I couldn’t find a comparable flavor profile in the North American spirits, so I decided to make my own and offer it at a better price point than the premium imported rums.
Búsqueda Aged Rum is aged for a minimum of three months. Any plans for rum aged longer?
Being a new micro-distillery, all of our barrels are brand new and smaller than the large producers use. New barrels impart more flavor than older barrels and the smaller size increases the surface area per volume the rum is in contact with the wood. This means that a lot of flavor is imbued in a short amount of time. This is why we stop after three months. We found that any longer the rum gets over oaked and loses its delicate pineapple sweetness that we love so much in this rum.
The second use of the barrel lends itself to longer storage times. We are currently building up our supply of barrels suitable for long term aging. So to answer your question, yes, we plan to produce a longer-aged, ‘Reserve’ version of Búsqueda.
Can we find this in any Portland bars or restaurants?
Do you have a cocktail recipe you love for this rum?
I have two favorites. First, Búsqueda makes a killer rum and Coke. The oak and vanilla notes pair extremely well with cola. I also like Búsqueda in a Hemingway Daiquiri. The recipe I use is:
2 oz. Búsqueda Aged Rum
¾ oz Grapefruit Juice
½ oz lime juice
½ oz maraschino cherry liqueur
¼ oz simple syrup
Mix all ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake vigorously. Serve in a martini glass garnished with orange peel.
In making this rum, Flooded Fox Den, searched for the essence of the best rums in the world. “We have achieved a rum that is truly Northwestern but shares the spirit of a great Puerto Rican style rum. We are proud of it,” Scot says.
Label via Hello Happiness Design