Yorkshire-based entrepreneurs Alex Bray and David Armstrong, are celebrating after the rum they created picked up a slew of four top industry awards. AB Gold Rum, which combines Jamaican rum from the Caribbean with Yorkshire spring water and is bottled in Holmfirth, has just been awarded Bronze in the World Rum Awards. It was also awarded a Bronze Medal out of thousands of entries in the International Wine & Spirit Competition, one of the most coveted and competitive awards in the spirit industry.
AB Gold also achieved a Gold in the Rum Masters category of The Spirit Business Awards, beating 30 other rums in the category as well as being the only rum to be awarded Gold. In addition, it has been named best Rum on the Rocks UK at the People’s Choice Award.
Alex, who lives in Holmfirth where the business is based, has worked in the rail sector with Dave for a number of years and the pair became firm friends during the first lockdown, sharing their love of rum over a weekly video call.
“We are so proud that AB Gold Rum has been recognised as one of the best golden rums in the world, winning four top industry awards despite being a relative newcomer. Inspired by lockdown, we wanted to create a rum that made getting together with friends for a drink that little bit more special, a rum that is different from the rest – AB Gold is crisp, clean and smooth with a complex flavour. And these awards prove that we’ve achieved our aim and more.
“As rum connoisseurs ourselves, we combined our expert knowledge and our experience of travelling to the finest rum producing regions of the Caribbean over the last 20 years to create AB Gold. The public have loved our rum and for industry judges to give us this recognition is the icing on the cake.”
First launched in December 2020, AB Gold, which is 100% natural with no additives, flavouring or colouring, was a hit at the summer festivals, with Alex and David ordering more batches to meet demand. It is one of the youngest rum brands taken on by the nationwide distributor Hammonds of Knutsford and is now stocked at over 100 locations across the UK including bars, restaurants, farm shops and independent off licences.
“We were selling out at festivals and knew we were onto something special. We’ve spent time and effort ensuring that every aspect of our offering is right – from the quality of the product itself which is aged up to seven years, to the distinctive packaging which reflects the heritage of the rum,” adds co-founder David. “We had such an amazing reaction from the public that entering the awards was the natural next step. For us to put our new brand up there, alongside long-established rum producers, shows how serious we are about building an international reputation. And for independent spirit experts across the world to recognise us with these awards gives us an amazing platform from which to grow.”
AB Gold is blended from only the finest traditional pot-stilled, triple oak barrel-aged Jamaican rums, made from virgin Caribbean sugar cane. Tasting notes from the judges included:
“Hints of banana and sweet spice. Jamaican fruit on palate, good balance.”
“Rounded banana/vanilla/toffee nose. Balanced palate with ripe and unripe fruit, and a touch of minerality. Darker brown banana notes develop, along with some sweet fruit.”