The Nautical Legacy of Mount Gay Rum

Image: There's no other way to enjoy après sailing than with a bottle of Mount Gay Rum. (Courtesy of Mount Gay Rum)
Image: There's no other way to enjoy après sailing than with a bottle of Mount Gay Rum. (Courtesy of Mount Gay Rum)
Chelsea Davis
by Chelsea Davis
Last updated: 10:00 PM ET, Fri June 29, 2018

What is your definition of time well spent? Is it time spent honing skills to perfection? Time spent laughing with loved ones? Or perhaps it's time spent reminiscing on past memories that bring a smile to your face, all the while making new memories you're sure to cherish down the road.

Embodying this idea of "Time Well Spent" is the premium spirits brand, Mount Gay Rum. Established in 1703 it's the world's oldest rum, and as such it's a brand that has a storied past rooted in tradition and history.

"A deed dating back to 1703 is proof of Mount Gay Rum's heritage as the oldest rum in the world. As a product of over 300 years of craftsmanship and refinement, Mount Gay has forged a unique appreciation and respect for time," explains Dorothée Hériard Dubre, Director of Brand Marketing, Mount Gay Rum."

It's a rum that has over 300 hundred years of refinement and craftsmanship behind it. One that has been able to successfully remain relevant with each passing century, while simultaneously staying true to its heritage, one which is intertwined with the world of sailing.

Don't know much about sailing? Read on. Mount Gay Rum's deep-rooted heritage with the sailing community dates back to the 1700s when Caribbean imports were first introduced to Europe and the Americas via sailing vessels. As demand for Barbadian rum and sugar cane increased, so too did the number of sailors hoping to get rich along the trade routes.

"Explorers would carry Barbadian rum back from their travels at sea to boast as badges of honor," explains Darrio Prescod, Mount Gay Rum Brand Ambassador. It's this practice of exhibiting one's skillset and sailing valor through Barbadian rum that gave way to the Mount Gay Rum Red Cap tradition.

For over 30 years, Mount Gay has sponsored regattas around the world-more than 200 each year. Only sailors who have raced in-and completed-a Mount Gay sponsored regatta are awarded this special red cap. Today this cap has come to symbolize the very same admiration and esteem as bringing home Barbadian rum way back when.

Now, as was the case back then, sailors choose to sip on this handcrafted, Barbados-bred spirit once back on land.

"Since then, Mount Gay has been sponsoring regattas around the world bringing sailors together over Mount Gay cocktails and their iconic red hats," furthers Prescod. "In the sailing community, gathering after a day on the water to drink Mount Gay Rum is truly time well spent."

Last month I had the pleasure of experiencing time well spent with Mount Gay Rum during a weekend of après sailing at the Volvo Ocean Race in Newport, Rhode Island. Mount Gay Rum sponsored this prestigious race's stopover in Newport, the race's only North American stop, so you could bet the rum cocktails were flowing-both at Race Village and throughout Newport.

The brand is known for its après sailing festivities and for us that meant that in addition to up-close, VIP race viewing, we experienced boutique accommodation (shout out to The Chanler at Cliff Walk!), an interactive storytelling experience highlighting Mount Gay Rum's sailing ties, incredible private dining, luxe sailing excursions and unforgettable time spent bonding with friends. Oh, and never being without a well-crafted rum cocktail in hand.

"To us, time well spent is time forging meaningful bonds with others over Mount Gay Rum," said Hériard Dubre. "We hope to bring these bonding moments to life through shared stories and passions."

Indeed, it was a weekend of sophistication, enjoyment and, of course, lots of quality rum! The après sail experience underscored the importance of being present and immersing yourself in the opportunities you have to make meaningful connections with both new friends and old. The Mount Gay Rum brand evokes a sense of timeless tradition and appreciation for slowing down and soaking the good life in.

For those of you who are rum connoisseurs, keep an eye out for Mount Gay XO: The Peat Smoke Expression, launching in Fall 2018.

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