Award-winning Yolo Rum Expands Popular Brand to Include Yolo Rum Clear

Impossible to Find Boutique Rum at Thrifty Prices? Think Again!


Denver, CO, and Panama City, Republic of Panama (April 11, 2017) – Yolo Rum is delighted to announce the newest addition to its line of premium spirits: Yolo Rum Clear. Joining Yolo Rum Gold and Yolo Rum Silver, Yolo Rum Clear is boutique-quality rum that isn’t priced like it.

“For a long time now, we’ve wanted to produce an affordable, connoisseur-worthy rum blend,” says Yolo Rum founder Philip Guerin. “And Don Pancho has once again knocked it out of the park.”

At the heart of the Yolo Rum operation is master distiller Francisco “Don Pancho” Fernandez. Born in Cuba and operating out of the Republic of Panama, Don Pancho is the world’s most respected and honored ronero (that’s “rum blender,” for the layman). The recipient of hundreds of awards, Don Pancho starts with rare sugar cane strains found only in Central America and the Caribbean. The resulting specially prepared sugar cane juice is fermented and distilled through a complex, five-stage series, and then Don Pancho goes to work, dictating how and how long the rum is stored before choosing the blends he crafts into dark or light spirits. Aging in charred American white oak barrels does the rest.

Yolo Rum features three distinct blends for rum aficionados. Top-shelf Yolo Rum Gold enjoys a 10-year aging process that gives it a rich, tawny color and smooth buttery taste. Two-year-aged Yolo Rum Silver is the world’s premium rum for mixing—if you like vodka, you’ll love Yolo Rum Silver. And now Yolo Rum Clear is a bridge between the two, ideal for mixing or solo consumption, with a smooth, lightly smoked sweet-oak taste. It is truly small-batch-quality rum available at a real steal.

All Yolo Rums are gluten free, with no added sugar or molasses and no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives, and the company produces its products using revolutionary environmentally sustainable processes. Yolo Rum has received multiple Best-of-Class wins from Spirits of the Americas, won multiple gold medals at the Denver International Spirits Competition and taken home multiple gold medals at the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival.

Francisco "Don Pancho" Fernandez at Miami Rum Festival

Offering boutique quality at exceptional value, Yolo Rum is the ideal synthesis of ancient crafts and modern tastes, and Yolo Rum Clear looks to be a worthy addition to the best rum line in the world.



Greatness beckons: Yolo Rum’s 3rd trip to Miami Rum Fest and Trade Expo imminent.


The biggest rum gathering of its kind in the world kicks off on April 22, 2017, at the DoubleTree Miami Airport Hotel and Convention Center. We’re speaking, of course, about the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival and Trade Exposition, the annual event that puts Miami at the center of the rum universe for a weekend. Last year, the festival drew rum experts, enthusiasts, and industry professionals from more than 30 different countries, and an even larger turnout is expected this year. Over 10,000 visitors are likely to attend the 50,000 square-foot venue over the course of the event.


Miami Rum Fest provides the opportunity for all manner of rum fans and experts to fraternize and sample the best rums the world has to offer. From rum producers and spirits industry product manufacturers to importers, buyers, retailers, distributors, brokers, spirits industry trade media, and myriad consumers, folks from all along the rum spectrum mingle and share in the experience. Rum aficionados and industry experts alike will have the opportunity to sample an incredible variety of rums from the Caribbean, the Americas, Europe, Asia, and beyond during Grand Tasting events held throughout the weekend. Celebrity seminars, live acts, and interactive cocktail demonstrations will also feature prominently on the entertainment docket. And, as a special pre–Rum Fest warm up, Rum Fest Tiki Night will take place on Wednesday, April 19, from 6:30 to 11 p.m., at the Mai Kai in Fort Lauderdale. Special Mai Kai Tiki Bus tickets are available here.

This year marks Yolo Rum’s third time participating in the Miami Rum Fest and Trade Expo, and, as we have been the last two years, we’re very honored to be a part of it. We’re also thrilled to use this incredible event as an opportunity to unveil our newest addition to our premiere line of spirits: Yolo Rum Clear. A bridge between top-shelf Yolo Rum Gold and ideal mixer Yolo Rum Silver, Yolo Rum Clear is splendid for mixing or solo consumption, with a smooth, lightly smoked sweet-oak taste.

Suenalo Yolo Rum Clear VIP Launch Party

We’ll be holding a VIP Launch Party on April 22, the first night of the Expo, also at the Miami Airport Convention Center, in the Poinciana Ballroom, from 7 to 10 p.m. And we’re delighted to announce that ¡Suénalo! will be performing live. Featuring eight dynamic and talented musicians, ¡Suénalo! is Miami’s premier Latin rock band. The group blends Latin and Caribbean rhythms with rock, hip-hop, funk, and vocals in both English and Spanish. Honing its craft in the underground Miami club and warehouse scene, the band broke through to mainstream audiences in the mid 2000s. They will perform live for partygoers and the Yolo crew, and we can’t think of any group we’d rather have to help us celebrate the debut of Yolo Rum Clear.

Of course, we’ll also be looking forward to the slate of prestigious competitions held throughout the festival. The Shaker Showdown Cocktail Competition provides an opportunity for Miami Rum Fest exhibitors and their bartenders to craft a unique and tasty cocktail worthy of the Shaker Showdown Grand Prize. The Consumer Rum Jury Competition lets increasingly savvy rum consumers and enthusiasts judge and award prizes to a select group of rum makers who wow them. And, of course, there is the grand finale of the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival: The RumXP Competition. The RumXP Tasting is one of the most renowned events of its type in the world. Rum judges from around the globe evaluate the finest cane spirits from all regions, all styles, and all categories in the rum world. The RumXP International Rum Expert Tasting Panel is composed of storied lecturers, trainers, authors, consultants, journalists, collectors, mixologists, proprietors, and promoters of rum. These experts engage in sequestered blind taste trials throughout the event, rendering their judgments at the end. All the rums are grouped in categories and judged according to style.

Last year, Yolo Rum Gold won a Best-in-Class RumXP gold medal in the “aged 9 to 12 year” category, and another gold from the Consumer Rum Jury. We have high hopes for this year, and we’re really looking forward to putting Yolo Rum Clear up against the best rums in the world.

Single Day General Admission tickets are $75, and VIP 2-day passes go for $125. Click here for full ticket information.

For complete details about the festival, check out the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival website, and stay updated by following them on Twitter.

The Legend of Francisco “Don Pancho” Fernandez

"Don Pancho" Fernandez and award winning Yolo Rum

“Don Pancho” Fernandez has invested a lifetime of contributions to the rum industry. This is the journey that brought one of the worlds most respected roneros to craft his finest rums yet.

Yolo Rum is the manifestation of centuries of rum-making knowledge, passed down to one man with five decades of hands-on experience in his own right. Each bottle represents a passionate life dedicated to perfecting a craft by a man with a vision: to create the finest rums in the world. To truly understand what makes Yolo Rum such a superior spirit (the best rum in the world?), first you must understand the story of the man behind the spirit. He is regarded as one of the most prestigious roneros, or rum makers, on the planet. He has been called the Godfather of rum. His name is Francisco “Don Pancho” Fernandez, and he is an icon at the center of the rum universe.
Don Pancho is recognized for his vast knowledge and a lifetime’s worth of experience in rum production. His career, to this point, spans over fifty years. It began in Cuba, and now he is the linchpin of Panama’s rum industry. But, you might ask, who exactly is Don Pancho Fernandez?
Francisco “Don Pancho” Jose Fernandez Perez was born in Cuba in 1938. His father, Don Antonio Fernandez Castro, was a wine-and-spirits merchant, and Don Pancho’s first job was harvesting sugar cane with a machete alongside Don Antonio in the sugar-rich fields of Cuba. This is where he developed his “golden nose” and intimate understanding of the plant that would help Don Pancho himself grow into one of the sweetest gifts to rum making the world has ever known. Don Pancho learned Cuba’s spirits industry at an early age under the guidance of his father. After earning a degree in microbiology, he set out to pursue his passion of creating the finest rums.
Don Pancho began his career in his early 20s, following the Cuban Revolution led by Fidel Castro, which ousted former President Fulgenico Batista in 1959. Before his illustrious career with the Cuban beverage industry had even officially begun, he had commenced developing the skills that would make him a master of his craft. During this time, Don Pancho mentored under the tutelage of Don Ramon “Ramoncito” Fernandez Corrales, a legend in his own right. Working with the Cuban master Don Ramon, he learned many skills and techniques, unlocking the secret of the perfectly stored and cleared white rum, an art few have been able to perfect. This Carta Blanca method of creating aged rums is used throughout the world to this day. Relying on the unique know-how of the Maestros Roneros, he would learn and preserve the art of añejamiento, the craft of distilling, aging, and blending premium rums.
During the 70s, Don Pancho’s knowledge became more refined, and his influence on the Cuban rum industry started to grow. The decade saw his role in the Cuban beverage industry evolve from trainee to Master Blender and, finally, to Director of the Cuban beverage industry. He became known as “The Minister of Rum” in Cuba and went on to modernize and revolutionize the industry while working for notable distilleries, Cuban benchmarks like Havana Club and Matusalem. Throughout the 70s and into the 80s, Don Pancho helped renovate the industry as a whole, introducing modern technology to plants and distilleries and rehabilitating cask inventories. He also spearheaded improvements in fermentation, production, and blending techniques that became the standard in the years to come. His iconic role in Cuban rum production earned him another nickname—“Great Grandfather of Havana Club”—and Don Pancho’s fingerprints were on virtually every rum produced in Cuba during this period.
The 90s was a decade of change for both the Cuban rum industry and Don Pancho. He was in his early 50s and had settled into his position as a celebrated and respected member of society. Then he fell in love with a woman from Panama. It was also around this time that Cuba’s national rum brand was acquired by a global conglomerate. And so, after 35 years of perfecting the “Cuban Method” of rum making, and a lifetime dedicated to leaving his mark on the Cuban rum industry, Don Pancho found himself in Panama in the early 90s, taking on fresh challenges and starting a new chapter of making rum. Don Pancho landed on his feet in the small town of Pesé, in the Herrera Province, Panama’s premier sugarcane region. Thanks to unique climatic characteristics, Panama is known globally as the source of some of the world’s finest sugarcane.
In Panama, Don Pancho continued his journey and earned perhaps his most triumphant achievements. After leaving Cuba for Panama in the early 90s, Don Pancho went to work for the Varela Brothers, producers of Ron Abuelo rum. He went on to become Master Blender at Varela Hermanos, having a big influence on the company’s rum quality and the growth of the brand. During this time, he found himself reunited with an old friend by the name of Carlos Esquivel, the CEO of PILSA. By the mid 90s, Don Pancho and Mr. Esquivel, through incredible amounts of hard work, desire, and vision, converted a neglected distillery and restored the Las Cabras Distillery, developing it into one of the more renowned distilleries in the world.
Francisco "Don Pancho" Fernandez at Miami Rum FestivalToday, Don Pancho Fernandez is recognized as a living legend of the rum industry, one of the most experienced and respected Master Blenders in rum’s modern history. Acting as the Master Distiller at Las Cabras Distillery for over 15 years, the same distillery that he rejuvenated with Carlos Esquivel in the mid 90s, Don Pancho has elevated the distillery’s status to a prominence never before experienced. With old friend Carlos Esquivel by his side, Don Pancho and the Las Cabras Distillery are only just beginning to hit their stride. Now, after an incredibly successful 50-year career filled with numerous accolades and awards, a time when most would be eyeing retirement, Don Pancho Fernandez finds himself at the pinnacle of his career and in the prime of his creativity. In 2013, he was individually recognized as a nominee for Rum Master Blender of the Year at the Golden Rum Barrel Awards.
His experience and reputation have afforded him the opportunity to travel the world and interact with other beverage industries and disciplines firsthand. His journeys have gained him experience with wine in France, vodka in Poland, and whisky in Scotland. This unique and rewarding mélange of knowledge has developed his skill set and propelled him to become the ultimate Master Blender that he is today. And it is with this resume of superiority that he is able to create Yolo Rum. Don Pancho has described Yolo Rum as “the standard that all rums should be held to.” He understands the importance of adhering to classical methods and being true to the ethos of old-school rum production. Don Pancho has spent the last 50 years perfecting the development of superior rum in the Cuban and Latin American traditions, and it is this consummate skill and passion for perfection that is embodied in every sip of Yolo Rum. It has been very humbling and an unbelievable honor to work with him. And it is with a great deal of gratitude and excitement that we are able to share his gifts with you. So raise your glass to history, heritage, experience, passion, perfection, and love. This moment belongs to you! You deserve the best! You Only Live Once!
Francisco "Don Pancho" Fernandez with the first batch of Yolo Rum in Panama

Rum Expert Robert Burr Reviews Yolo Rum Gold for Examiner website features Yolo Rum Gold review written by internationally recognized rum expert, and founder of Miami Rum Renaissance Festival, Robert Burr

Earlier this year, the website featured a review of Yolo Rum Gold by Robert Burr.  The review was also featured in an online video series Mr. Burr produces titled “Rum Minute,” featuring reviews of fine rums and libations by industry experts.  Robert Burr is an industry veteran and an internationally recognized rum expert, as well as the founder of the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival held annually in Florida.  Robert Burr’s passion has seen him travel the world in search of the finest rums, visiting distilleries, rum festivals and special events.  His vast collection of rums from around the globe offer him a depth and breadth of samples to study and evaluate.  This wealth of knowledge about the rum category manifests itself in “Rob’s Rum Guide,” a comprehensive resource for the finest rums in the world.

Here is what Robert Burr had to say in his review of Yolo 10 year aged Gold Rum:

 “You only live once” is the motto of a person who enjoys a sociable and luxurious lifestyle, and the theme behind this delicious dark aged rum. Produced in Panama by master of rum Don “Pancho” Fernandez, Yolo Gold aged rum rests for ten years in charred oak bourbon barrels, developing a complexity of flavor and a deep mahogany color. Philip Guerin’s enthusiasm for rum lead him to establish the brand along with his wife Jessica. With a lifetime of experience in marketing and brand development, they assimilated their talents, their passion and love for quality rum into this savvy Colorado-based brand. This dark amber aged rum offers aromas of charred wood and toffee before a hint of burnt sugar balanced by a vegetal sweetness over cigar box. On the palate, cinnamon brûlée leads then fades to reveal a cognac-like wet wood into the long dry vanilla finish, well balanced between sweet and dry, offering a subtle hint of raw cocoa in the aftertaste. Yolo Gold aged rum is the winner of numerous medals, including a Gold Award at the International Rum Expert Panel Tasting Competition in 2015. January 2016

For more information about Robert Burr, and to see more tasting notes and facts from his extensive collection of reviews, please visit Rob’s Rum Guide.

Blazing Mako Fishing Tournament and Festival in Islamorada Florida

Blazing Mako Tournament and Festival featuring Yolo Rum

Yolo Rum teams up with Guy Harvey Outpost for this unique 3 day festival in support of Nova Southeastern University

Yolo Rum is excited to be a part of the Blazing Mako Tournament & Festival June 17-19th, 2016 Father’s Day Weekend in the beautiful Florida Keys.  This three day event is hosted by the Islander Resort, a Guy Harvey Outpost in Islamorada, Florida.  The Blazing Mako is part of the “Bonfire Series” of events that was created to celebrate the “Outpost Attitude” by promoting fishing, diving, adventure, art, education, and conservation.  Each Festival creates a unique ocean-themed sculpture inspired by the destination and its fishery and each Bonfire Festival is designed to raise money for a local charity in either conservation or education.  This year’s featured artist is Florida Keys resident Roberto “Pasta” Pantaleo, whose Mako shark sculpture created out of recycled materials will be set ablaze at the Saturday night bonfire party.  Proceeds from the Blazing Mako will benefit Nova Southeastern University Tournament Scholarship Fund through the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation.  Nova Southeastern University (NSU) Halmos College of National Sciences and Oceanography is a not for profit, private research university focusing on ocean conservation and preservation studies.  The university specializes in a variety of oceanographic fields including marine biology, geology, ecology, and physics of the marine realm.  Yolo Rum will be featured at the events “Rum Village” on Saturday and Sunday as we will be serving some of our award winning Yolo Rum Gold and Silver as well as Yolo Rum cocktails.  Other weekend events include paddleboard races, learning and science exhibits, and a silent auction, as well as a “Artist & Conchservation Village” with vendors showcasing art, food, merchandise, and science to benefit marine conservation.  Live bands will be beachside on the NSU Mako Music Stage, headlined by the Shane Duncan Band.

About the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation

The Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation funds inspired scientific research and innovative educational programs to encourage conservation sand the best management practices for sustainable marine environments. Through the support of the Foundation’s visionary friends, leading scientist will develop new strategies for sensible fisheries management, encouraging the cooperation of commercial and recreational fishers and educators will create novel instructional programs to stimulate future scientist and new steward of the marine environment.

More information can be found at

Miami Rum Festival 2016 Awards Yolo Rum Gold ‘Best in Class’

2016 Miami Rum Festival RumXP Best in Class Medal
2016 Miami Rum Festival Consumer Rum Jury Gold Medal

RumXP International Rum Expert Tasting Panel selects Yolo Rum Gold as ‘Best in Class’ in the ‘Aged 9 to 12 Year’ category at the 2016 Miami Rum Renaissance Festival.

The 2016 edition of the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival recently wrapped-up at the DoubleTree by Hilton Miami Airport Convention Center in Miami, Florida.  The festival, now in it’s 8th year, attracts rum experts, industry professionals and rum enthusiasts spanning the globe as one of the premier rum events in the world.  This year we were excited to make our second straight appearance at this world-class event hosted by Robert Burr along with his wife Robyn and his son Rob.  One of the highlights of the event is the International Rum Expert Panel tasting competition which occurs on the events first night.  The esteemed Rum Expert Panel (RumXP) boasts some of the most respected and revered rum experts in the world, and each year a multitude of rum expressions from around the globe enter the competition.  Last year Yolo Rum was able to score a RumXP Gold Medal for our 10 year aged Gold expression, and we were happy to compete once again with some of the world’s finest rums on rum’s biggest stage.  The RumXPs would not be let down, as we were proud to be recognized once again as one of the finest Rums on the planet.  This year, we were honored to be selected as the “Best in Class” Rum for the “Aged 9 to 12 Year” category.  On top of our “Best in Class” award, we were highlighted by the festivals Consumer Rum Jury as well.  The Consumer Rum Jury is comprised of 20 well qualified rum enthusiast consumers, collectors and experienced rum travelers, offering the perspective of the active and engaged rum buyer in their evaluations.  The Consumer Rum Jury gathers at the festival for blind tasting sessions under the supervision of the International Rum Expert Panel team.  We were incredibly excited to be chosen by the 2016 Consumer Rum Jury as a Gold Medal award winner.  It was truly a great honor to be recognized by such an elite group of rum experts as one of the finest rums in the world, by both the RumXPs and the Consumer Rum Jury.  Once again a phenomenal achievement for Yolo Rum’s master distiller and rum blender, Francisco “Don Pancho” Fernandez, one of the world’s most respected and honored “roneros.”

Phil is congratulated by Don Pancho
Don Pancho Fernandez with Jessica
Miami Rum Festival 2016 Best in Class award certificate
Miami Rum Festival 2016 Consumer Rum Jury Gold award certificate


Yolo Rum owner Phil displays Miami Rum Festival award
Yolo Rum founders Jessica and Phil with Miami Rum Festival award

Yolo Rum crew at 2016 Miami Rum Festival

Fifteen judges participated in six tasting sessions over the course of two days.  Judging over 100 of the finest rums in the world presented for evaluation this year.  The 2016 Miami Rum Renaissance Festival Judges included:

Juan del Busto
Rum Collector / Spirits Judge


Marie King
Tonga Hut Los Angeles


Suzanne Long


Matt Pietrek


Martin Cate
Smuggler’s Cove San Francisco


Ian Williams
Washington, D.C.


Scott French


Nigel Sade


Additional photo credit to RumXP Judge Matt Pietrek of

The view from RumXP Bahama Bob Leonard

Additional photo credit to RumXP Judge Bahama Bob Leonard

Click here for a complete list of 2016 Miami Rum Renaissance Festival RumXP Medal Award winners

Miami Rum Renaissance Festival 2016

Miami Rum Renaissance Festival Logo

Yolo Rum is excited to make our 2nd appearance at the 2016 Miami Rum Renaissance Festival, the world’s largest gathering of rum enthusiasts.

Miami Rum Renaissance Festival Poster
In only a couple short days Miami transforms into the global hub of the rum world for the 8th annual Miami Rum Renaissance Festival.  Miami Rum Fest is set to launch on Friday April 15th, and run through Sunday April 17th 2016.  This year will mark Yolo Rum’s second year participating in the event, hailed as the largest rum gathering of it’s kind in the world.  The festival attracts rum experts, industry professionals, and rum enthusiasts from more than 30 different countries.  The 2015 event saw 10,000 plus visitors through the course of the 3 day event, and this year is almost certain to attract even more rum fans and aficionados.  The annual festival offers an opportunity to sample a truly remarkable range of fine rums from the Caribbean to the Americas, from Europe, Asia and beyond, during the three days of Grand Tasting events at the DoubleTree Miami Airport Convention Center on April 15-17, 2016.  The Miami Rum Renaissance Festival and International Trade Exposition for Rum also includes celebrity seminars, live entertainment, island lifestyle vendors and interactive cocktail demonstrations to round out the lengthy list of activities associated with this incredibly unique experience.  It’s almost as if you died and went to rum heaven, as the 50,000 square foot venue will be transformed into a rum lovers paradise.  This is truly a celebration of the best rums in the world, and Yolo Rum is thrilled and honored to be a part of this amazing weekend.
Captain-Jack-at-Miami-Rum-Renaissance-Festival-2015-Jared-WigandThe event takes place in Miami, as the name suggests, and it’s only a couple minutes away from South Beach, but this isn’t a gathering of spring-breakers chugging cheap rum, this is rum for grown-ups.  For consumers, the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival is one of the world’s premier international rum events, as hundreds of rums are displayed, offering an unprecedented and exciting opportunity for rum enthusiasts to sample, discern and learn about the world of fine rums. For professionals, this is the world’s largest and most important trade exposition for rum.  Furthermore the event offers the opportunity to rub shoulders with dignitaries, notable experts, and more.  And while very little rum is actually made in Miami, rum reputations are.  The weekend is a who’s who of notable rum celebrities and icon’s from across the globe.  The events organizers are Robert and Robin Burr, who with their son Rob Jr. form one of the most expert teams of rum aficionados in South Florida.  Their wisdom manifests itself into the pages of Rob’s Rum Guide, one of the most authoritative and respected rum guides today, both in print and on the web.  Robert’s mission of the festival is clear, as he puts it, “We’re challenging the mistaken assumption that Rum is ordinary. In fact, Rum is fascinating.”  And what makes this 3 day festival one of the best in the world?  “Rum is fun.  And rum people are fun people.”
Miami Rum Renaissance Festival tasting glassesIn a new addition to this year’s Miami Rum Festival and Trade Expo, host Robert Burr has announced the addition of a VIP Tasting Bar, featuring a selection of outstanding samples from his own private collection. “We want to share with rum fest participants some of the most interesting and exquisite rums that we’ve collected from our travels around the world. This is splendid opportunity for rum enthusiasts to better understand and appreciate these limited edition, vintage and rare collectibles,” said Robert Burr.
The grand finale of the event is the RumXP Competition, in which Yolo Rum placed as a RumXP Gold Medal winner in 2015.  The annual RumXP Tasting  is among the most prestigious events of its type in the world, bringing together a host of experienced rum judges from around the globe to evaluate the finest cane spirits from every region, every style and every category of the rum world.  The RumXP International Rum Expert Tasting Panel is one of the most respected collection of experts in the spirits world and their collective expertise as a group of judges is unrivaled.  Their combined experience spans many dozens of countries and hundreds of brands. They are an all-star collection of authors, lecturers, trainers, historians, journalists, consultants, collectors, proprietors, mixologists and promoters of rum.  The RumXP judges are sequestered in a tasting room for three days on blind tasting trials. All rums are grouped and judged in categories according to their style.
Yolo-Rum-Francisco-Don-Pancho-Fernandez -Miami-Rum-FestivalTickets start at $75 for Single Day General Admission, and go up to $125 for full 3 day VIP admission.  Click here for full ticket information.
For all of the details about the festival, check out the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival website, and stay updated by following them on Twitter.
Additional photo’s courtesy of RumScout (Rob V. Burr Jr.).  Check out the full 2015 Miami Rum Renaissance Festival Photo Gallery.  Follow: RumScout on Instagram or RumScout on Twitter.

Denver International Spirits Competition 2016 Awards Yolo Rum Two Medals


Fifth annual Denver International Spirits Competition recognizes Yolo Rum as one of the best, awarding medals to both Yolo Gold and Yolo Silver.

The 2016 Denver International Spirits competition took place March 11th through the 13th at the Omni Interlocken Resort in Broomfield, Colorado.  The event is now in it’s fifth year and has continued to see a huge growth in entries and exposure, as the competition saw a 5o% increase in entries over 2015, with product offerings from distilleries all over the world.  The spirits competition is a “double-blind” format based on a 100 point scale and the spirits are categorized and judged by price.  This years event was judged by 15 of America’s most respected spirits authorities, as well as guest judge and internationally recognized whiskey columnist Blair Bowman from Edinburgh, Scotland.  The event is the premier international spirits competition in the Rockies, and it is the largest competition of its kind in the region.  The Denver International Spirits Competition is organized by Wine Country Network Inc., producers of the highly respected Denver International Wine Competition and the Denver International Beer Competition.
Yolo Rum was once again proud to be recognized amongst the competitions most elite, being awarded medals for both the Yolo Rum Silver and Yolo Rum Gold expressions.  The Silver was able to score a bronze medal in this year’s “White Rum” category, while Yolo Rum Gold was awarded with a silver medal in the “Extra Aged Rum” category.  While this result was not as favorable as our 2015 Double Gold Medal at the Denver International Spirits Competition, it is a testament to the consistent quality of this fine cane spirit produced by the hand of one of the world’s greatest rum makers, Señor Francisco “Don Pancho” Fernandez.  With a 2016 judging panel comprised of many new experts from the 2015 competition, there are sure to be differences of opinions about tastes as well as different preferences.  The element that remains unchanged are the competiton results that continue to show that Yolo Rum is regarded by experts as a superior spirit, regardless of that competition panels make-up.  The palates and taste buds of spirits industry veterans the world over continue to agree that Yolo Rum is one of the best in the category.

The Judges for the 2016 Denver International Spirits Competition were as follows:

2016 Competition Chairs

Darcy R. Davies
CO-Founder, President
Wine Country Network, Inc

2016 Judges

Larry Wilcox
Certified Spirit Sommelier & Spirits Judge
Topshelf Liquor Consulting, LLC

Blair Bowman
Columnist for Scottish Field Magazine
ScotlandNow and Unfiltered Magazine
Edinburgh, Scotland

Adam Douglas
Spirits Industry Veteran
Director of Operations
Peak Beverage

Jonny Ode
Award-winning mixologist
Host and Creator
The Burns Pub, Broomfield, CO

William Davis
Food & Beverage Industry Professional
Advanced Sommelier
Court of Master Sommeliers

Dave Elger
Spirits Industry Brand Developer
Host of the HotMixology TV Show

Kimberly Naslund
Cocktail Judge
Columnist for Microshinner and Distiller Magazines
Assistant Distiller at Dancing Pines Distillery

Jim Burrus
Professional Beverage Judge
Food and Beverage Columnist
YellowScene Magazine

Jim Denier
Professional Beverage Judge
Littleton, Colorado

John Haven
Professional Beverage Judge
Fine Spirits Collector

John Allison
Professional Beverage Judge
Boulder, CO

Justin Gillman
Manager & National Wine Buyer
Lucky’s Market
Niwot, Colorado

Andrew Burton
Seasoned wine and spirits judge
Liquor Buyer
Argonaut Wine & Liquor

Chris Kirk
Professional brewer and distiller
Assistant Distiller
Mile High Spirits

Former Colorado Buffalo Chad Brown Enjoys his Yolo Rum Gold on the Rocks

How does Chad Brown, former linebacker for the CU Buffs, Pittsburgh Steelers, and New England Patriots enjoy his Yolo Rum?

During a recent segment airing on Mile High Sports Radio AM 1340, former Colorado Buffalo Chad Brown spoke about his affinity for Yolo Rum.  He went on to detail his road map to a perfect evening of enjoying Yolo Rum cocktails.  Chad likes to start his evening with a Yolo Rum Silver mixed drink, then transitions to sipping on the complex and bold flavor of Yolo Rum Gold, accompanied by a single ice cube for that nice cold chill.

Chad Brown was a four-year starter and two-time first-team All-Big 8 Conference selection as a member of the Colorado Buffaloes.  Chad Brown was also a prominent member of the National Champion Colorado University team of 1990 as a sophmore, playing alongside fellow Yolo Rum lover and former Denver Bronco Alfred Williams in the 1991 Orange Bowl.  Brown was originally drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the second round of the 1993 NFL Draft.  Brown went on to play in the NFL for 15 illustrious seasons as a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Seattle Seahawks and New England Patriots.  In Browns 15 year career, he appeared in 1 Super Bowl with the Pittsburgh Steelers, 3 Pro-Bowls, and was an NFL All-Pro in the 1996 and 1998 seasons.  In 2010, Brown was named as an honorary member of the Seattle Seahawks 35th anniversary team.  Today you can catch Chad Brown on a number of various media outlets offering his gridiron expertise as a football analyst on Mile High Sports Radio AM 1340, The Pac-12 Network, ESPN and 104.3 The Fan.

We salute you Chad Brown.  A world-class athlete deserves a world-class rum.  Enjoy responsibly, enjoy in moderation, but enjoy the heck out of your Yolo Rum.

#YoloRum | Fan Submitted Photos | Yolo Rum Bottles

How do you enjoy your bottle of Yolo Rum?

For this batch of #YoloRum Fan Submitted photos, we feature a handful of submissions from fans as they show-off how they like to enjoy their bottles of Yolo Rum!


@amoreno2158 enjoys Yolo Rum after a hard day.


@_kay_luh enjoys Yolo Rum while she watches the game.


DJ John Stewart enjoys Yolo Rum while he’s in the studio.


Mike Bolte enjoys a bottle of Yolo Rum when he’s in the VIP.


@mpgomez_09 enjoys Yolo Rum while relaxing for the night.


@_cowboy_tone enjoys Yolo Rum with some wings.


@mars_burleska likes to get creative with the versatility of Yolo Silver in her signature Yoloberry cocktail.


@mars_burleska likes to get creative with the versatility of Yolo Silver in her “smack my basil” cocktail


@2b_88 enjoys Yolo Rum and a Fat Tire while playing video games.


@barberhoa and his clients enjoy Yolo Rum at Salon Joa. 


@d3vonthadude enjoys bottles of Yolo Rum and beer with friends.


@ericmfulton enjoys bottles of Yolo Rum Gold and Silver while he entertains guests.


@nightlifedenver knows what it means to live the top shelf life.


@kg__33 enjoys a good old fashioned Yolo Rum and Coke.


Roman is just getting his night started.


Colorado Radio personality Buhrm Gotti enjoys Yolo Rum on a Friday night with the crew.

Hashtag your photos with #YoloRum to show us how you like to enjoy Yolo Rum!

You Only Live Once…
Enjoy Responsibly

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