Red Rum ;-)

Rum lovers around the world owe a great debt to a simple plant: sugar cane. Hundreds of years ago, there was a sugar craze in Europe, and colonies were established around the Caribbean to make the sweet commodity. But the production of sugar creates a lot of byproduct—namely, molasses. There wasn’t much use for the thick, sticky, sweet substance until it was discovered that molasses could be fermented and then distilled. The alcohol quickly became popular with pirates, sailors and America’s founders.

One particular founder, and original favorite ginger, Thomas Jefferson, made lots of money importing rum from his plantation in Antigua. We can think of a few contemporary gingers we'd like to be drinking rum with today. Behold some choice selections from the Red Hot Calendar.

While rum can be sipped neat or on the rocks, many famous cocktails use the spirit as a base, including the the Dark ‘n Stormy, the Daiquiri and the Mai Tai, not to mention the simple Rum and Coke. And rum lovers have to try our two delicious new spring cocktails: the Ty's Law - our twist on a mojito using basil instead of mint; and the Koko Head Colada - our bastardization of the piña colada that's deliciously light.

Try 2 rum drinks today. It's 2-4-1 Wooden Nickel Wednesday.