Archives for June 2011

Firecracker Rum Shots

Ahhhh…Independence Day. BBQ’s, games, friends, fireworks and rum shots? Why not! Here’s a recipe for Firecracker Rum Shots sure to spice up your 4th of July picnics. Got kids around? Make another round – sans the rum – (maybe a different color for easy identification) for the young ones and designated drivers.

Glass shot glasses work well for very small parties (and look good in the pictures), but I found Lil’ Reds Mini Cup Shot Glasses  or Jello Shot Cups and Lids work quite well for larger gatherings and are both disposable.

Firecracker Rum Shots

(makes about 12 – 1.5 oz. servings)

1 – 3oz. package Strawberry Jello Mix
1 cup boiling water
1 cup banana (or coconut) flavored rum
Whipped Cream

Boil water and add Jello mix. Stir until dissolved. Add the rum to the Jello mix, stir well and pour into shot glasses or disposable cups. Place glasses or cups in the refrigerator for about 4 hours. Add whipped cream to the top right before serving.

Want to make your shots taste a little cinnamony? Add 1/4 c. of red hots to the boiling water before you add the Strawberry Jello and use white rum instead of flavored rum.

Want a hot cinnamon taste? A couple of our readers have suggested substituting half Hot Damn Cinnamon Schnapps for half of the rum (use white rum instead of flavored). We haven’t tried it yet, but it sounds cinnamon hot and delicious! If you try it, let us know what you think!


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Rum Therapy encourages you to always drink responsibly.

A Pirate Looks at 10

The other day, I had a post on our blog entitled “BEACH Playlist”. I had some great comments from readers on favorite songs and artists and even got a few new ones to look up – and I LOVE finding new tunes to add to my collection.

One comment in particular piqued my interest and it came from Rum Therapy Facebook friend Liz Morton. Her comment – “My favorite beach music is my 10 year old son Fletcher, his Little Martin guitar, and all of the Buffett, Eagles, Scott Kirby, and Bob Marley tunes in his repertoire!” Liz attached a link to a You Tube video and I thought what the heck – half expecting to just see a young kiddo strumming (without playing the chords) and singing a few words of a Jimmy song.

A few seconds into the video, I realized Fletcher was not just a cute kid making a fun video for mom, but a talented young man.
Not that I’m an expert, but I actually did teach private music lessons for, well, let’s just say – a lot of years and am impressed with not only his guitar skills, but his musicality. I mean, this young man FEELS the music and genuinely looks as if he loves what he’s doing! And – at 10, he’s not only playing and singing songs from Jimmy Buffet, the Eagles, Elton John and more, he’s already getting booked for gigs! I asked if I could interview Fletcher about his music career so far and here is what I learned:

1. When did you first become interested in music?
I have always loved music!  I started playing guitar when I was 7 years old.  The first concert I attended was Bruce Hornsby when I was 2 years old.  I went to an Eagles concert last year and saw Jimmy Buffett for the first time in West Palm Beach on 4-23-11.

2. Tell me a little about your musical background.
I have an ear for music.  I hear something and pick it on the guitar!  My mom plays the mandolin and my dad plays brass instruments. I have taken lessons from David Keith and Jim Liberato but right now I am learning by myself.  I also play the keyboard a little bit.

3. What other musicians do you listen to and admire?
Jimmy Buffett, The Eagles, Elton John, Ella Fitzgerald, John Hiatt, Styx, The Who, The Beatles, Eric Clapton, B.B King, Zac Brown, Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole, Bob Marley, and Sam Cooke.

4. Do you have other hobbies or what else do you like to do?
My hobbies are acting, singing, dancing, learning to fly airplanes, and learning all about space.

5. What grade are you in?
I am in 5th grade.

6. What kind of guitar do you play?
I play a Little Martin LX1E that my Grandpa bought for me.  I also have a full size 1960’s Sears Silvertone electric guitar from my Uncle Allan but I’ll have to grow into that one.

7. Do you have a favorite type (genre) of music, ie: rock, country, jazz.etc?
I like all genres except rap and whiny girl music.

8. Do you do a lot of gigs or performances? What’s your favorite song to play?
I’ve played at Vintage Guitar Closet, Wahoo’s, The Key Lime Cafe, Finz, and the Lyric Theatre here in Stuart, FL.  I also got to open for Scott Kirby in Klamath Falls, Oregon last year.    My favorite song to play is You Belong To the City by Glenn Frey.

9. Do you write some of your own music?
I have written one original song called I Like Earth The Way It is.  It’s about an alien coming down to earth, bringing some humans back to his planet for his birthday, and then bringing them back to Earth.  My favorite part of the song is when I make spaceship noises at the end.

10. I’m sure some of the music you like to play may have lyrics that are a little innapropriate for your age. How do you handle that?
If there are bad words, I make up my own words for that part of the song.  For example, when I play LA Freeway by Guy Clark, I say “that crazy gremlin” instead of the bad words.

11. How does playing music make you feel?
Playing music makes me happy! My guitar is my heart, soul, and life.
12. What other artist would you most like to play with?
I would love to play with Jimmy Buffett one day.

13. What are your hopes and dreams for the future?
I want to be a ROCK STAR! I also want to be an airplane pilot and a super star on the stage and in movies, TV shows, and musicals.

14. How can people find out where you’re playing?
My mom and dad post my gigs on my facebook page . You can see videos of my performances there too.

15. Is there anything else you’d like us to know?
My favorite part of performing is making people happy.  I like it when girls watch me play and think I’m cute!

So there you have it! Considering Jimmy didn’t even start to take this music thing serious until he was in college, Fletcher has gotten a pretty good start – and I’d love to see him up there strumming with Mr. Buffett someday!

So, listen and enjoy as this 10 year pirate sings and plays JB’s “A Pirate Looks at 40”.

BEACH Playlist

I have a playlist on my iPod entitled BEACH. There are 34 songs on BEACH. I know – that’s not a lot especially considering there are nearly 5,000 on the iPod itself. So what 34 songs are on my BEACH Playlist? Well, you’d probably be surprised – I mean coming from someone with a degree in music you might expect a lot of classical music or jazz or something respectable like that. There are no classical or jazz tunes on BEACH. Instead you’ll find songs such as “That’s Not My Name” by the Ting Tings and “I’m On a Boat” from Lonely Island.

O.K., so you probably won’t be surprised by Jimmy Buffet’s, “He Went to Paris” or Kenny Chesney’s “No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems”, but what about “Sweet Emotion” by Aerosmith, Ben Harper’s “Steal My Kisses”, “Life is Beautiful” by Keb’ Mo’,  OR “Sangria Wine” by Jerry Jeff Walker?

Funny how music can remind us of certain times in our lives; like good times in high school, summertime, a first kiss, someone we cared about and lost or great vacations and good times with friends. As Kenny Chesney sings in another song from my BEACH playlist “I Go Back”:

Every time I hear that song
I go back, I go back

There are 847 songs on my VACATION playlist. These are the songs that are played while playing in the sand, the sun, and the sea with friends and family on relished vacations, but the BEACH playlist is reserved for one thing. Every song on the BEACH playlist takes me back to a vacation time that was special: sailing into White Bay for the first time singing “I’m On a Boat” at the top of our lungs, that last awesome cruise with my dad, playing Liar’s Dice at Rhythms at Rainbow Beach in St. Croix, singing a song with the band to win a shot at The Last Resort, pretending we were Johnny Depp finding the rum on Petit Tobac and an especially awesome evening with friends on a sailboat – drinking rum, laughing and watching the sun set over the beautiful Caribbean water.

The BEACH songs are the songs I listen to when I need a short escape. I turn the music on loudly, pour my favorite rum drink and then put my feet up,  close my eyes and smile as I remember each and every great memory. Ahhh…Life IS Beautiful.

What songs AND memories are on your BEACH playlist?

Coconut Lime Freeze

Warmest day of the year so far – yippee! It’s been a long time coming this summer. Bring it on!

The welcomed warmth reminded me of a very refreshing and simple to make drink that we’ve enjoyed on several hot summer evenings called the Coconut Lime Freeze. So cold and icy – but the brainfreeze is worth it! The taste of coconut rum and lime play nicely together and may remind you of sipping a frozen tropical concoction in a hammock on your favorite beach. Enjoy!

Coconut-Lime-Freeze copyright Rum Therapy
Coconut Lime Freeze
(makes two tall glasses)

4 oz. Coconut Rum (we used Cruzan)
1/2 – 3/4 c. frozen limeade concentrate
4-5 c. ice
3 Tbsp. water

Pour rum, limeade and water into a blender over 4-5 cups of ice. Blend until creamy adding more ice if necessary. Garnish with a slice of lemon or lime.

Pour rum, limeade and water into a blender over 4-5 cups of ice. Blend until creamy adding more ice if necessary. Garnish with a lime slice (or lemon as I did – ’cause I was out of lime!)

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Bushwackers’s. Oh my. I sampled my first Bushwacker atop Paradise Point in St. Thomas many, many years ago and was pretty much hooked. I mean, who wouldn’t be? Chocolate, rum and the amazing overlook of Charlotte Amalie – wow, paradise.

Our most recent tropical encounter with the Bushwacker took place at Ivan’s Stress Free Bar on White Bay, Jost Van Dyke. Not only do they make a mean Bushwacker, but they will also add a floater of rum on the top if requested. Not that you need that extra floater, mind you. A Bushwacker without the floater can knock you on your bum, because in addition to that wonderful chocolate and rum, a Bushwacker contains, vodka, Kahlua, Amaretto and Bailey’s – oh, and don’t forget a little coconut cream and a sprinkle of nutmeg! So like our recipe below aptly describes it, if you want a virgin Bushwacker – you might as well just suck on ice!

This recipe will make about 3 tall glasses depending on the amount of ice used. We like them thick and frozen, so we blend about 3 cups of ice with this recipe. Enjoy – but watch out! These might taste like a milkshake but they are potent!

Bushwacker Rum Recipe
(makes 3)

2. oz Coconut Rum
2 oz. Vodka
2 Oz. Bailey’s
2 oz. Kahlua
2 oz. Amaretto
2 oz. Cream of Coconut
Chocolate Syrup
Pinch of Nutmeg

Drizzle chocolate syrup in a glass. Combine all ingredients in a blender, blend with ice, pour in the glass. Sprinkle with nutmeg.

5 from 1 reviews
We sampled our first Bushwacker many years ago at the top of Paradise Point in St. Thomas and were hooked. Who wouldn't be? With the taste of chocolate, rum, Kahlua and Amaretto - it's definitely a smooth and creamy adult milkshake!
Recipe type: Drinks
Serves: 3
  • 2. oz Coconut Rum
  • 2 oz. Vodka
  • 2 Oz. Bailey’s
  • 2 oz. Kahlua
  • 2 oz. Amaretto
  • 2 oz. Cream of Coconut
  • Chocolate Syrup
  • Whipped cream
  • Pinch of Nutmeg
  1. Drizzle chocolate syrup in a glass. Combine all ingredients (except the whipped cream and nutmeg) in a blender, blend with ice, pour in the glass. Add a dollop of whipped cream and sprinkle with nutmeg.

You might also like:

Bushwacker Pudding Shots

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Cruzan Cucumber Crush

One of the things I like best about the Cruzan Rum Facebook page is that not only do they post some great rum recipes, their Facebook friends do too. So, I was delighted to see several new recipes by Cruzan Facebook friend John P. a few days ago. So far we’ve only tried “Cruzan Cucumber Crush”, but will certainly give “The Hip Replacement” a try when we gather all of the ingredients! With a name like that – how could we not!

Johns recipe for the Cruzan Cucumber Crush was as follows:

To make: Slice fresh cucumbers into 4 thin slices (3 for the drink and 1 for the garnish). Put the 3 slices of cucumber into blender, add 6 count of Cruzan Mango Rum, add coco lopez to consistency of a pina colada. Then blend till cucumbers are blended in equally. Pour into hurricane glass and garnish with the fourth cucumber slice on the rim of glass. To mix it up muddle to rum, cucumber, and coco lopez in rocks glass, shake, and serve on rocks with cucumber garnish.

Well, we had the ingredients, but being the incredibly remedial bartenders that we are, and not knowing what 6 count of Cruzan Mango Rum would equate to and exactly how much cream of coconut would be needed to make it the consistency of a Pina Colada, we set out to experiment.We had to make several batches before we ended up with a very refreshing and not too sweet concoction. Here is the version we ended up with:

Cruzan Cucumber Crush (makes 1)

1.5 oz. Cruzan Mango Rum
1.5 oz. Cruzan Aged Rum
1 oz. cream of coconut
4 cucumber slices

In a blender, add 3 cucumber slices (we left the peel on which gave it a nice light green color. Remove the peel for less green color!) the rum and the cream of coconut. Blend until cucumber is pulverized. Add ice and blend again. We continued to add ice until it was fairly thick in consistency. Pour into a glass and garnish with the remaining cucumber slice.

photo: Pamela Ott

The Cruzan Cucumber Crush has a very unique but refreshing taste. Both of us were unsure of it at first, but by the end of the glass we were making plans to mix up another! Thanks John P. for posting the recipe!

I’m Gonna Live My Life Like a Jimmy Buffet Song

A while back, I found a page on Facebook called the I’m Gonna Live My Life Like a Jimmy Buffet Song – Book Page. With a name like that I had to check it out.  From what I could detect, the page owner had witten a book about a guy named Jack Danielson who decided to chuck his successful, albeit mundane and unhappy life in Minnesota and make a huge change. The story chronicled his adventures as he discovered what his life was truly about. I was intrigued and ordered the book through Amazon.

The day I got the book in the mail I only had time to read the prologue but knew just from those few pages it was going to be an enjoyable read. When I finally got to sit down on the deck, grab a glass of rum  and do some serious reading, I had a hard time putting it down.

The author of the book, Anthony Bjorklund, has an easy, relatable and quite humorous style. At times it felt as if he were telling this story to a bunch of folks while hanging out in some bar in the Caribbean enjoying a few rum drinks. It reads a bit as if he were just sitting there chatting it up with you!

From the description of Ronald Strickland, the boss who made me miserable just reading about him, to Anthony’s colorful description of why tropical shirts are so popular in party places, Anthony’s characters and analogies drew me in. Never preachy and with many laugh out loud moments, it is thought provoking and makes you reflect on truly slowing down and savoring the many good things in life.

An added bonus at the end, Anthony has, as he titled it, “A Very Short and Unnofficial Guide to Key West”. This section includes some interesting information about Key West as well as a description of some of his favorite bars, eateries and things to do and see. This guide would have been quite useful during our first visit to Key West last year as unfortunately we missed several of  the attractions listed. Guess that’s a good enough reason to go back!

Whether you’re a Jimmy Buffet fan, love the tropical lifestyle, or would just like to read a light and funny book that makes you feel good, you’ll enjoy “I’m Gonna Live My Life Like a Jimmy Buffet Song”. Might even make you think about what song you want to live your life like!

The book is available from Amazon and is also available for Kindle. Click the link below for more information.

I’m Gonna Live My Life Like a Jimmy Buffett Song: A story Tribute to Jimmy Buffett and the Parrothead Lifestyle

Railean Distillers – San Leon, Texas

We are always interested in finding out more about individuals who, like us, have hung up their suits and ties and are “making their obsession their profession” – especially a company that makes rum! That’s why we were very interested in finding out more about Railean Distillers in San Leon, Texas, when we were informed of them by Rum Therapy FB friend Paradise Cocktails.

Now, we haven’t been lucky enough to sample Railean Rum as it’s not available in our state yet, but are confident we will in the near future (maybe a road trip to tour the facility in San Leon for research purposes only, of course!) and I’m pretty sure we’re gonna love it!

photos courtesy of Railean Distillers

I contacted Kelly Railean, the founder of Railean Distillers and asked if I could interview her about the Railean Distillery and this is what we learned.

1. How did you come to start your own rum company?  I spent over 10 years in the wine business; I sold wine for a large distributing company here in Texas.  I have a Level 1 Certification from the Court of Master Sommeliers.  My husband & I learned to sail in the late 1990’s and we purchased a Hunter 29.5 in 2000.  When we caught the sailing bug we started collecting and drinking rum & learning all about pirates and the island lifestyle.  One day while hanging out at The Buccaneer Bar in San Leon, Texas; we had this great idea to make our own rum.  It made perfect sense, my husband (Matt) is a Chemical Engineer, and I had the industry experience and a great palate for wine & spirits.

2. Tell us about Railean Rum and how it differs from other rums? My products are handcrafted; we ferment a high grade sugarcane molasses & blue agave nectar, distill, age and bottle everything at our distillery – by hand.  I am one of the few woman Master Distillers in the world – and yes, I really do distill and make all the rum & blue agave!  We are family owned & operated, we use the best possible ingredients in our products, and we do not add any colors, flavors or other additives to any of our products.  Our El Perico Blue Agave Spirit is the first and only Blue Agave Spirit to be made in Texas, our aged rums (Reserve XO and Small Cask Reserve) were the first aged spirits made in Texas, and our Railean Texas White rum is double distilled for the smoothest possible flavor.

3. What is your vision for the future of Railean Rum? An expansion of the distillery and increased distribution within the United States.  Our products are fantastic, and I believe Railean could someday be the number one premium & domestic made rum and blue agave in the United States.

4. Where is Railean Rum rum available? We are available in Texas, California and Arkansas.  We are distributed through Republic National Beverage in Texas, Western States Beverages in California, and Central Distributors in Arkansas.  Depending on individual state laws, folks may be able to purchase our products online from

5. Do you have rum factory tours? Tours & tastings are by appointment.  Tours are typically Monday – Saturday and usually between the hours of 9AM and 2PM.  During the hot summer months, tours are only offered in the AM since this is a working distillery and it is too hot in the afternoon to tour.

6. What else would you like us to know about Railean Rum? I make three different rums:  Railean Texas White (retail $17.99), Railean Reserve XO Dark (retail $18.99), Railean Small Cask Reserve Aged (retail $29.99).  I also just released the first & only 100% Blue Agave Spirit made in Texas for those of you who love your Tequila.  The El Perico Blue Agave Spirit retails for $29.99.  El Perico is Spanish for “the parakeet” which is the logo on all of the Railean labels.  The parakeet or Monk Parrot is our mascot; there are hundreds (possibly more) of the little green guys all around the distillery, along the gulf & our marinas, and even at our home!

7. We have in common a love for sailing and tropical islands. Do you have a favorite island or place to sail? I love to sail the British Virgin Islands and we have sailed there many times.  Most of my sailing though has been in Galveston Bay and around Galveston Island, TX.  I have also sailed the Bahamas, St. Martin, St. Barts, Jamaica, and Cozumel.  One of the most beautiful islands I have ever been to was Manihi, Tahiti; and that was the best scuba diving I have ever done in my life!

Kelly, thanks for the interview! Maybe we’ll run into you while sailing in the tropics sometime and share a little “Rum Therapy!” You bring the rum!

To find out more about Railean Distillers:
Tours:  [email protected]