If you have ever dreamed of spending a few magical days and nights in New Orleans, the "Big Easy" of the American Southeast, you now can add yet another stimulus to do so. It turns out that New Orleans is not only one of the most fashionable, but also most appropriate, places to spend August 16, aka National Rum Day. Home to many a pirate and rum runner in its early days, New Orleans has managed to survive adversity and retain its easy going, good natured charm, particularly in its many diverse watering holes.
August 16 Is National Rum Day
The month of August contains not one, but two, tasty sensations: National Sandwich Day and National Rum Day. In addition to a heck of a lot of history and sight seeing attractions, New Orleans is also one of the finest places to celebrate National Rum Day. Indeed, the recently declared holiday has become so popular that it has even revived some mid-century traditions that many thought were gone forever. For example, the Tiki Bar was once one of America's premier "exotic fads", particularly in the decades just after the end of World War II.
Celebrate National Rum Day At A New Orleans Tiki Bar
If a classic Tiki Bar experience is high on your agenda for your New Orleans vacation, you're in luck. As it happens, Tiki Bars have reemerged in the American night club scene with a vengeance, and New Orleans is home to some of the nation's finest examples. After a long "out of fashion" phase, the Tiki Bars are back with a vengeance. If you're looking for proof, just check out the dozens of Tiki Bars that dot the landscape of New Orleans from the French Quarter all the way out to the suburbs.
Combining Polynesian fashion and decor with the potent appeal of rum, such bars as Aunt Tiki, Tiki Tolteca, and many others have really stepped up their game in recent months. The historical legend of Jean Lafitte, one of New Orleans' most famous local pirates, is an excellent inspiration to enjoy a night of hula dancing and rum drinking.
Try One Of New Orleans' Most Famous Rum Drinks: The Hurricane
If you're not so much in the mood for Polynesian Tiki bric-a-brac, you can instead opt to enjoy one of the city of New Orleans' most famous native rum drinks, the legendary (and aptly named) hurricane. If you're a fan of the new TruTV series, "Impractical Jokers", you have very likely witnessed the recent episode that showed the guys palling around in New Orleans and enjoying these tasty (and sneaky) rum based mixed beverages.
The Hurricane is one of New Orleans' true treasures, and a rum lover's delight. Its fruity red mixture of rum and a few other choice ingredients, topped off with a cherry and a slice of fragrant orange, has brought countless numbers of the world's finest rum connoisseurs to the Big Easy for a sip of pure paradise. Named for the glass it's poured into, which apparently resembles an old fashioned hurricane lamp, this is one drink that you'll quickly learn respect for.
Enjoy An All Night Rum Tour Of The City
If you are really keen on making a night (or perhaps a full weekend) of it, you can use your Internet research skills to schedule an ad hoc travel tour of all of the best rum related spots in the city. There are several New Orleans travel tour services to choose from, many of which run a series of all day (as well as all night) trips throughout the city that will give you the full view of a number of classic rum bars, distilleries, and various related sites. If you're a sucker for classic New Orleans history, accompanied by a tall glass of the city's most famous beverage, this is a chance you won't want to pass on.
There's nothing like a tour of an authentic New Orleans rum distillery to give you a true sense of the hard work, intense preparation, and tender loving care that goes into the manufacturing of classic rum. You can view the entire process from start to finish at the Old New Orleans distillery. Their accompanying tour service includes a complimentary rum tasting at the end of the trip. For true believers, this is tantamount to a visit to Mecca.
Tips For Further Information
If you're new to the whole rum scene, or planning to visit New Orleans in the very near future, you might just want to get up to speed on the culture. While anyone can enjoy a tall cool glass of their favorite rum in just about any combination from plain to wildly exotic, there's a great deal to learn about the history and customs associated with this legendary tropical concoction. There are a number of places on the web, such as Bacardi Cuba's site, that can help you get a grip on rum culture and what you need to know in order to enjoy this classic drink to the fullest.