Rum: It’s the lifeblood of the party and the taste of the Caribbean.
And the flavour of Cayman, too, with many great brands based here worth the time. In the case of Seven Fathoms, the rum’s distilled and aged on Grand Cayman itself – being lulled by wave action seven fathoms deep in a secret cave we still haven’t found despite learning to dive specifically for that reason.
Not to worry, says Walker Romanica of the Cayman Islands Distillery, because Seven Fathoms and other associated brands have gone great guns over the last 12 months.
“It has been an exciting year for us as a young company, which is growing fast. We have launched new products like Governor’s Reserve, gold, white and coconut, which has been received very well around the Island and we are going to expand that even further in the new year.
“We have collaborated a lot with One Tree Four Five and the Swanky shack, doing events together and building the idea of a local culture/lifestyle brand. All our tours come through the official Swanky shack gift shop,” he says.
There are also joint efforts for Taste of Cayman to offer a swanky drink, with the two Caymanian brands fitting well together in terms of creativity and fun.
“What we have that is closely linked is the idea of an authentic, Cayman-made source. Both brands are about authentic Cayman culture – the first ever locally-made rum and a designer creating something authentically Cayman,” our mate says.
The distillery is also developing a new-build environmentally-sensitive facility which is going to be ready by late summer or autumn, 2012. The current Hammerheads location, says Walker, is near capacity and the new purpose-built distillery will be able to accommodate tourists better and have more space for events.
“It will be sustainably designed from the ground up, keeping in mind our use of energy and water we will be using some geothermal and solar technology to try and make this new facility as green as possible.
“The people that are fans and drink our rum have come down and seen the process, how everything is hand-made from scratch with love and attention. It is a very authentic thing; you see it and you get it. We want to open up to more people and have more space to make that happen,” he adds.
Word has spread for these young entrepreneurs, with Seven Fathoms now available in many locations in the United States.
“We are doing very well; the product is in Binnie’s and we ship online to 38 states. Through their site we can serve the majority of cruise and air visitors who come through and can buy a bottle when they go home. Our biggest issue right now is trying to keep up with demand.”