Antigua is a small Caribbean island in the West Indies also known under the Indian name of “Wadadli” (there even is a beer with the same name). The island is about 280 square kilometres of size and has more than 80,000 inhabitants. The main source of income for Antigua is – as for so many of the Caribbean islands – tourism. But lo and behold rum production not only plays a significant role in Caribbean history but is also often a mainstay in source of income.
Arriving in Antigua on my trip to learn more about the islands’ history of rum I was welcomed by Calbert Francis, the export manager for the Antigua distillery, the only remaining distillery on the island. Calbert hosted me during my stay (and a great host he was!) and although he is a naturally gifted sales man of rum and other alcoholic beverages he himself does not drink a drop! After a quick stop at the hotel we took off to visit a wide range of Antiguan bars from top hotel bar to local rum shack. After an authentic Caribbean dinner Calbert took me to one of the carnival shops where locals put together their carnival costumes and practice soca. Carnival is huge on Antigua and lasts for a whole week at the end of July.
The 3rd of June 2013 marked a special day in the lives of 6 soon to be rum experts and 3 communications and marketing experts. We met bright and early on the Monday morning at Gatwick Airport. Feeling slightly worse for wear, I met the team for a coffee and we chatted about the pending trip.
The time had come and we were off to Barbados to participate in an enlightening educational experience into the world of Authentic Caribbean Rum. Together with the management team at WIRSPA we were due to meet with all the key producers of ACR, to mark the re- launch of the Authentic Caribbean Rum Marque.
- The Marque will be present at Bar Convent Berlin 2013 as a first step to launch in new international markets
- Event takes place on the 8th and 9th of October in Station Berlin