Introducing Papa’s Pilar

Rum Inspired By The Man Who Inspired The World

Rum was once a noble spirit. It was served aboard warships, rationed to visionary explorers, and used to sustain the Founding Fathers as they plotted revolution. Rum was consumed by men who understood that you only get one shot at life. Standing still, they’d say, was a waste of valuable time.

Ernest Hemingway was this type of man – an adventurer who lived life to the fullest. He indulged us with glimpses of a vibrant life by stitching together distant cultures, passions, and people using the power of the written word.
-From Papa’s Pilar Webpage.

Today I want to introduce to you and new rum brand that I am personally very excited about.  But what does Papa’s Pilar mean? Well as many of you know Papa is the nick name given to Earnest Hemingway and  The Pilar is his famous boat.

Recently I have been lucky enough to attend a few functions for this brand in Miami and Key West. I have had the opportunity to converse with the master blender and other’s within the company.  I even got to meet the guy who designed the bottle, and this friends is no ordinary bottle; it’s pure art!  Look closely, that’s a WWII canteen with nods to Key West, navigation, and bravery.

But as much attention as was paid to the appearance of the container even more was put into the rum itself. Papa’s Pilar  uses  a blend of multiple rums from the Caribbean, Central America and Florida. The rums are brought to the U.S. and married together in an aging and blending process process called Solera; and from this we get a magical and delicious spirit that is bold, complex, sweet, and worthy of it’s namesake.  I’d put money on Earnest himself enjoying this fine rum on any given day.

The Solera Process

The Solera Process

About the Rums

Now I could sit here and tell you how the 3 year old blonde has a very pleasant nose with citrus notes, vanilla, oak and almond, and how it has a great buttery vanilla taste with mango, orange peel and hints of pineapple. And how the 24 year old dark has a sweet flavor mixed with earthy, vegetal tones and how it coasts the mouth with hints of spice, bourbon, almonds and apricot…. because they do.

But how many of us really know what all that means or really care for that matter? If you are one that does then cheers to you, you have a leg up on me. But as fate would have it I am no rum expert and I took all of that from their webpage anyway. I leave the technical stuff to Carl and the other real experts.

What I personally love is that The blonde is an 84 proof rum inspired by the sea-going adventures of Hemingway. I have enjoyed this one both neat and and in a few cocktails; but for me I liked it best mixed up in a Hemingway Daiquiri or a Mombasa Mojito, which we will see later.

The dark was inspired by Hemingway’s unbound land travels and at 86 proof is great in a mixed drink; but I love it straight up and neat with maybe an orange rind and a cube or two if the mood strikes.  All that is important to most of us is that these are quality rums with some unique and great taste. So if you enjoy rum, these are a must have addition to your bar.


Papa's Pilar 3 y/o blonde and 24 y/o dark.

Papa’s Pilar 3 y/o blonde and 24 y/o dark.


The Hemingway family is donating 100% of their royalty profits to organizations that embody the likes af adventures, literacy, and conservation-Causes near and dear to Hemingway and his heirs.

In support of this Papa’s Pilar is working with local charities and causes that serve the Hemingway legacy. So as many of you may or may not know Hemingway was once VP of the IGFA. So at the Key West launch party Papa’s Pilar and the Hemingway’s presented them with a $30,000 donation! I believe Papa would have been bursting with pride if he were here.

Patrick Hemingway presenting the check to the IGFA

Patrick Hemingway presenting the check to the IGFA

So how about a Cocktail?

OK so amounts and how to put this all together are how I think it went. This one isn’t written out anywhere but this is one I had at the launch party in Key West and I think this feels about right.

When I think of Papa I often think of Cuba. And what can be more Cuban than a Mojito? Well this is a twist on the original and was labeled under the Africa section at the Key West launch party. But it was one that I returned to throughout the night with great delight.

So we have the Mombasa Mojito.  Here’s what you’ll need:

  1. Papa’s Pilar Blonde: 2 oz
  2. Coconut Water: as needed
  3. Maraschino Liqueur 1 oz
  4. Grapefruit Bitters: dash
  5. Lime: garnish
  6. Simple Syrup: 1 oz
  7. Mint: 6 sprigs

Add mint, simple syrup, bitters, and liqueur to your  collins glass and muddle (only need about 3 passes with the muddle stick).  Fill your about glass 2/3 way with ice and top off with coconut water.  shake/mix.  If you don’t have a shaker that fits over your glass just give it a back and fourth once.  Top with ice, garnish with lime, and enjoy!

Be sure to follow Papa’s Pilar on Facebook at and get much more information on this amazing brand at




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