The residents of Little Cayman love Flor de Caña 12-year-old rum more than anyone else in the world, at least statistically. For that, they were rewarded.
On July 24, Flor de Caña and Tortuga Rum Company hosted “The Ultimate Flor de Caña Party” at The Hungry Iguana Restaurant & Bar, featuring complimentary rum drinks, a cigar roller and entertainment by DJ Flex.
On hand for the event was John Guilarte, Flor de Caña’s area supervisor in North America and the Caribbean. Although Guilarte has been with Flor de Caña only a short time, he learned what was going on in Little Cayman early.
“One of the first stories I heard was about [Little] Cayman, this little island that had the highest per capita consumption of Flor de Caña 12 in the world.”
Flor de Caña, which is made in Nicaragua, produces a number of different sipping rums, including 18-year-old and 25-year-old luxury rums. However, in Little Cayman, the 12-year-old Flor de Caña is king.
“In the U.S., the 12 doesn’t get poured as much as the 18,” Guilarte said. “In Little Cayman, 12 is the most popular.”
Finding a way to celebrate the statistical distinction has been in the making for about a year.
“We wanted to reward the people who are loyal to Flor de Caña, who love the brand and appreciate the product,” he said. “How do you celebrate? You have a party.”
With the offer of complimentary rum drinks – either a mojito made with Flor de Caña 4-year-old white rum or Flor de Caña 12 served on the rocks with an orange wedge – The Hungry Iguana was packed. Many people were dancing, including some on the bar.
Author Kathleen Bodden-Harris, who was visiting from Cayman Brac, was impressed.
“It’s one of the largest crowds I’ve ever seen here,” she said.
A raffle gave away Flor de Caña T-shirts and bottles of rum, with the best prize – a bottle of Flor de Caña 25 – going to Little Cayman resident Shirley Tan.
During his two-night stay on Little Cayman, Guilarte saw firsthand how much people love Flor de Caña 12.
“Last night I was in [The Hungry Iguana] and four people at the bar drank four bottles by themselves,” he said in amazement.
Guilarte believes there’s a reason why Flor de Caña 12 is so popular in Little Cayman: The pace of the island matches the rum’s slow-ageing process, where the rum is naturally aged with no blending.
“If this is your pace, you have to find a product that meets your pace,” he said.
Although there are no definitive plans for future Flor de Caña events in Little Cayman, Guilarte said it’s possible and that the island is certainly important in his marketing plans.
“I want to make Little Cayman Flor de Caña’s shining example in the Caribbean.”