Key West First Legal Rum

Booze Hound: Stuart Streuli is sniffing out the good stuff at Quantum Key West.

Every day after sailing in Quantum Key West, my walk home took me past the fledgling Key West First Legal Rum Distillery. On the final day of racing, with most of the afternoon to kill, I popped in.

It opened just before Christmas, so CEO Paul Menta and his team were still shaking things out. They plan to produce a variety of different rums— three were available for tasting during my visit. I particularly enjoyed the Vanilla Crème Brûlée.

Unfortunately, only their flagship white rum was available for purchase. When the bartender saw my disappointment, she offered an alternative. If I bought one of the souvenir flasks, she’d fill it with whatever I liked. So for the trip home, I tucked the flask inside one of my sailing shoes, secured it with a damp sock and buried it in my suitcase.

I didn’t go to Key West to become a rum smuggler. But then again, that island has been making a living out of expanding moral envelopes for decades.

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Key West First Legal Rum Distillery

Key West First Legal Rum Distillery