There is a whole lot going on about the “navy” strength rum these days. The implication being that a man’s man can hold his liquor. Without unpacking all of that – it is hard to see why the British or anyone else’s navy would be terribly interested in getting its sailors blotto. Take your shore leave and go nuts, sure, but on board you’ve got to maintain order or Captain’s in the launch and the crew is off to Pitcairn’s Island.
So Pusser’s Admirality strength rum seemed like a marketing ploy, and then the gal at the counter took it to a whole new level: “It’s got the kick of moonshine, but the taste of rum.” If that’s the pitch, you should just sail off into the sunset. Still, there was copy to write, and here we are.
Well, she didn’t lie – the problem is that moonshine is awful. It did taste like rum, but is also sat in the stomach like white lightening. It’s hard to tell, who, exactly, this stuff is for. Someone going for the wild-eyed Southern boy thing ought to stick with moonshine or bourbon rather than explain what he’s doing with rum. For connoisseurs of finer rums, the immediate taste is pretty good, but it’s just too harsh on delivery and exit.
To be clear, the British Admirality’s recipe for its infamous grog is: half a barrel of rum, half a barrel of water and a quart of lime juice. Now that’s a hell of a stiff cocktail, but it’s not likely that these jack tars were walking absolutely bow-legged either.
What Pusser’s is good for is a variant on the Dark & Stormy, what Burnaby is dubbing a Category 5: Pusser’s rum, ginger beer, and a healthy squeeze of lime. It’s not bad and you’ll round the horn faster than drinking Pina Colada.