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The Book Shelf

Books of interest to Rum Lovers


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Old 01-21-2008, 03:08 PM   #1
mammel
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Default The Rum Experience

I am wondering if anyone here has had the chance to read or review in any way, the book The Rum Experience by Luis Ayala. Currently on the website for Rum Runner press, there is a series of 3 books available for purchase together or individually.

I have reviewed Luis's Rum University and it looks very well put together for something free online. It sounds like this guy know his stuff. I am just wondering if this book or the series is a worthwhile purchase, or if something else is better?

Unfortunately this book is not available in Canada through any normal book super sites. Any purchase would have to be made directly from Rum Runner and I want to make sure its worthwhile before I get hammered for all the duty.

Any input is appreciated!
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Old 01-21-2008, 05:22 PM   #2
RobertBurr
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Default The Rum Experience

Luis is considered an expert in some circles and his various web sites for rumuniversity.com, RumShop.net, RumFest.com, rumtalk.blogspot.com, etc are functional but do not appear to have been updated in recent years. He used to publish "Got Rum" newsletter until 2004 then abandoned it.
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Old 01-21-2008, 05:31 PM   #3
mammel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertBurr View Post
Luis is considered an expert in some circles and his various web sites for rumuniversity.com, RumShop.net, RumFest.com, rumtalk.blogspot.com, etc are functional but do not appear to have been updated in recent years. He used to publish "Got Rum" newsletter until 2004 then abandoned it.
I do realize that his newsletter was not being published or released any longer. It also appears that the site isnt being updated or maintained any longer. His online bookstore appears to be still functioning, I cant see why he would keep it active if his products were not available. I tried emailing with no response...makes me wonder.
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Old 01-21-2008, 05:48 PM   #4
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Luis was ahead of the curve on the rum revolution. He was making a pitch to rum companies as a consultant and trying to spur sales of quality rums online, but may have moved on to the next era in his life. I saw him quoted recently in an article on Nicaraguan rum in the Miami Herald. My guess is the reporter googled rum, found his sites and asked for an expert opinion.
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Old 01-23-2008, 09:40 AM   #5
mammel
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Thanks for all your advise on this one. I read the review on Scottes page, and based on what I read he had the same expectation as I. Seeing that he was not too pleased with the findings, I will hold off on that purchase for now. Perhaps I will look around and try to find something that lives up to what The Rum Experience says it has.
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Old 01-23-2008, 10:15 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mammel View Post
Seeing that he was not too pleased with the findings...
That is not exactly correct. While I loathed the printing and layout, such things are not as important as the information contained. And while I complained that half of the 492 rums covered were just a listing of the name, this means that about 250 *did* have info. And I'll reprint my summary here:
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Summary
When one looks past the printing quality and layout, this book has a wealth of information. It’s easy to recommend since it contains so much information about rum. Sure, the rum descriptions may be a little light, but it’s hard to find so many packed into one location like this. It was the first rum book I ever purchased, and I still refer to it - constantly. Definitely recommended.
There are, AFAIK, 4 books of this type* - Ed's, Dave Broom's, Plotkin's, and The Rum Experience. The Rum Experience is 3rd on my list of recommendations, and is still definitely recommended. Of the ~30 rum books I own, I would not recommend at least 20 of them to anyone except a fanatic or collector. I'd easily recommend Ayala's book to anyone who enjoys tasting rum, though I'd recommend Broom's book first. (And hopefully Ed's upcoming book will displace it from being my top pick.)


* By "this type" I guess that I would categorize these books as "taster's" books. Books with some info, some history, some insight into the distillation methods, and - most importantly - reviews. IMHO.
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Old 01-23-2008, 12:59 PM   #7
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Like I said Scottes, your review was helpful. You did give a little excerpt on your review page. I am sure you would prefer to find a blurb on each rum that was more substantial than the sales brochure type stuff that would have appeared on the products own webpage. Also given that this book is no longer published, its a bit of a no brainer at this point too.

I will look more closely at the books you have recommended above this one.
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Old 01-23-2008, 09:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
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I am sure you would prefer to find a blurb on each rum that was more substantial than the sales brochure type stuff that would have appeared on the products own webpage.
I wholeheartedly agree.
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Old 01-24-2008, 08:28 AM   #9
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I liked "Rum" quite a bit, but enjoyed Wayne Curtis's book even more as it was more entertaining to read. It is probably my favorite book about rum.
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Old 01-25-2008, 01:02 PM   #10
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Good morning all.....

I spoke with Luis and Margaret Ayala last night and, as Mammel stated earlier in this thread, the "Rum Experience" is no longer available. The Ayalas were publishing these books on demand, doing all the printing, cutting, binding, boxing and shipping themselves. All this, plus the maintenance on the equipment and rising costs of materials and two full time jobs became too much. They are considering finding someone else to publish their books, but for now, there are none available. There are some overpriced used copies available on Amazon.

Scotes - I guess I have to admit to being a fanatic and collector of rum books, too. (My wife might use other terms for this obsession). Would you consider exchanging lists of titles in your collection? I have found it easier to go searching for rum books when you have an actual title. Thanks.
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