We imagine that there are very few people who do not know that rum comes from the West Indies, Barbados is a prime place and they have a festival to celebrate it, although to be absolutely correct it is called a Food, Wine and Rum festival.
But it is the Rum that Barbadians will shout about and it is here that the first properly commercial rum venture began, dated to 1703, when the Mount Gay distillery was set up in Barbados. It all goes back to the days of Christopher Columbus who is the one that introduced sugar cane to the West Indies.
In Barbados, which has a strong claim to be the birthplace of rum, the first spirit was made, soon it was discovered by settlers from Europe that the sugar could make them far more money than cotton! Pretty much every plantation had its own still and gallons of the golden nectar became part of the Island’s fabric.
The annual Food Wine and Rum festival is held every November usually towards the end of the month, the 2014 dates are not confirmed but will be shortly. November is also towards the end of the official Atlantic hurricane season. Barbados is fortunate to be positioned at the south end of the Caribbean while hurricanes tend to veer to the north. Barbados still averages nearly 8 hours of sunshine a day, this is a great time for a tropical getaway.