Rum is one of the most popular alcoholic beverages and can be found in numerous countries around the world. Most similar to sugarcane liquor, rum is a clear alcohol of a golden yellow or dark brown color, which comes distilled in a bottle or container. Most of the production for rum comes from the Caribbean and Latin American but it can also be made in countries like the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, India, etc. Similar to alcohols like whiskey and scotch, rum can age in oak or metal barrels if it not to be used immediately. Rum can be mixed with soft drinks like Coca Cola or Pepsi and is often served in cocktails. It can also be drunk straight (with no ice) or ‘on the rocks’ (with ice). The history of rum itself goes back hundreds of years back to the days when Europeans first discovered the Americas. Rum is always served in a glass of some sort and is never served to a customer in a bottle unless you purchase the alcohol at a liquor store. If you’re at the local supermarket or at the local liquor store and you see a big sale on bottles of rum, what should you do? Would it be worth the savings in time and money to buy a couple of extra bottle to store for the long-term? The ultimate question remains; does rum go bad?
Does Rum Go Bad?
While rum does eventually go bad, this process can often take many years. Luckily, rum is a very stable distilled spirit and liquor that can be easily stored by following the necessary steps and procedures. Rum is known as a base liquor and because the actual alcohol content is high in the product, this means that it can be stored for years at a time. If you’re interested in preserving the taste, texture, and overall quality of your rum bottle for the long-term, you should read through this article to find out some more useful information on how to best store and extend the shelf life of this popular liquor product.
Storing The Rum
Like many other types of liquor, rum must be kept in a cool, dark, and dry place at all times. You should not at any time expose the rum to heat, sunlight, water, humidity, oxygen, or any other outside elements. Extended exposure to any of these elements will cause the quality of your rum to decline prematurely and the flavor and texture will definitely be affected. Instead, it would be wise to store the rum, especially if its unopened, in places like the liquor cabinet, kitchen cabinet, wine cellar or even the attic if that’s a possibility. When you decide to open your bottle of rum for the first time, you may want to consider storing it in either the freezer or the refrigerator. The cooler than average temperatures will help the rum to stay cool and dry for longer periods of time.
When your rum bottle isn’t in use, it should always been closed and sealed tightly with a cork, cap, or regular seal. If you don’t choose to follow this step, you run the risk that the alcohol will begin to evaporate from the product over time. When exposed to the elements, alcohol will evaporate quicker than water and the taste won’t be as strong. You’ll start to lose a percentage of the total of the alcohol content in the bottle, which will result in a milder and less fulfilling flavor. The good news is that this evaporation process will take a couple of years but it’s better to prevent it from happening at all. Lastly, you should not store your rum with a pourer on top of the bottle instead of a cork or seal. A pourer will not prevent outside elements from affecting your rum and it won’t be as effective as a cork or seal. Moving your alcohol to a smaller bottle and sealing it tightly can delay the deterioration of the rum content.
Shelf Life of Rum
While it’s unclear if rum is immortal or indefinite in terms of its’ shelf life, it can last for many years and even decades. However, when compared to wine and whiskey, rum will neither improve nor get better with age. If you decide to go ahead an store your rum in oak barrels in an expansive cellar, you shouldn’t have any storage problems. However, if you’re like most consumers and you just have a regular kitchen cabinet, do not worry because your rum bottle can also last many years. If your rum remains unopened and the seal doesn’t break, then there’s a good chance it can last decades until you’re ready to use it finally.
When you decide to open up the rum bottle for usage and consumption, the shelf will still be the same in terms of lasting for many years but the quality will begin to decline after a couple of years. The alcohol will eventually start to deteriorate and evaporate. It’s recommended to consumers that alcoholic beverages like rum be used a few years after purchase when the quality is still flavorful and has a good taste. Once again, there’s no big difference between rum that was bottled a week ago and rum that was bottled more than ten years ago. Because of this fact, it would be best to drink your rum soon after purchase because the quality and taste will decline and not improve over the years.
Want to know more about different alcohols and if they go bad? Check out his video:
Signs of Bad Rum
Although rum doesn’t go bad in the traditional sense, it can still lose its’ traditional quality and flavor especially if it hasn’t been stored properly. For example, if you neglected to seal the bottle properly and left the cork or cap off for a long time, you should seriously look for some signs of its’ quality before serving the drink to your friends and family. You should check to see if there’s any discoloration in its appearance or any mold, bacteria forming within the bottle. If you’re still not convinced, you should smell the rum to see if there’s a pungent or bad odor emanating from it. You could also do a small taste test with a shot glass. Don’t worry though because a small taste test won’t make you sick but it will ensure that you are aware of its’ good or bad quality and whether it has been spoiled or not. Good luck and please drink responsibly!