Bacardi 151 Proof Rum – Here’s Why You Can’t Find that Anymore
Chances are if you've been of drinking age for more than a decade or two you have had an encounter with "151". That's what we used to call the elixir known to consumers are Bacardi 151 Rum. The "151" was a homage to the drink's alcohol content. It was "151" proof or 75.5% alcohol by volume. It was about twice as "potent" as regular Bacardi rum.
Most of the rums you purchase off your store shelves these days are 80-proof. In addition to Bacardi which is produced in Mexico and Puerto Rico, you can find other similarly-proofed rums that are made right here in Louisiana. I cant' say that I've tasted some of our Louisiana rums but those who have swear they are just as good if not more flavorful than their national and international counterparts.
Besides making a "sit and stay for awhile" brand of Planter's Punch with the 151 rum, I also used it for the spectacular presentation of my Bananas Foster. Which is basically a sugar-soaked banana served in flaming rum. Yeah, the 151 had so much alcohol in it you could literally set it on fire. See the blue flame?
And according to a story published by brobible those flames may have been what quietly extinguished the over-proofed rum some six years ago. The brobible narrative suggests that lawsuits filed by people who managed to burn themselves while lighting the product were the reason it was quietly discontinued.
It's been just recently that some unofficial official word has been released on the subject. Oddly enough it comes from a baseball writer by the name of Whitney McIntosh. McIntosh had gotten inside intel from a tour of the Bacardi facility. Here's what he tweeted.
Just for clarity, it should be mentioned that Bacardi 151 did have a warning on the label suggesting that you should not light the product on fire. I am guessing the legal system didn't find that warning to be strong enough so instead of blaming stupid drunks trying to play with fire around a flammable liquid it was more lucrative to blame the company that went out of its way to make the danger known.
If McIntosh's story is true then it does stand to reason. Idiots are the reason we can't have nice things. And because of those idiots, my family will never know the joy of sippin' a 151 'colada while playing lawn darts. Which in hindsight is probably a good thing anyway.
And speaking of rum drinks one of the favorite mixers is the pineapple, that's where the pina colada comes from and as long as you don't turn that pineapple upside down, you'll have a socially acceptable good time. Flip the pineapple, and you might want to at least close the blinds.