Chocolates and Rum

186 Choclates and RumA man is a little bit careless when he dates the lady of his heart for the first time. Or actually, he is not careless but confused when he ought to choose what to bring her as a small gift and then, where and how to spend the evening with her. Well, it’s not that difficult, guys. 🙂 It’s a general notion that women have a very strong inclination to flowers and chocolates (oh, yes, and after eating a single chocolate, they spend hours in the gym 😀 ). As to the ideas of spending the evening with her, no worries … A splendid idea is a romantic night spent at a beach-bar, near the sea and under the sparkling stars and the shining moon, with some Habanos. Two internationally giants will help you, for sure. And who are they?

When it comes to chocolate, the fair sex prefers gianduia. Maybe now you’re wondering what gianduia is and what it stands for. I even guess that you don’t know how it’s pronounced. Well, let me say a few things about it, then. In the beginning Gianduia [zhan-DO-yuh] was a marionette of the Commedia dell’arte during Napoléon’s regency in the 18th – 19th centuries. The puppet was a peasant from the Northern Italian region of Piedmont whose capital city is Turin. This character symbolized civic pride and honesty, as well as indulging in food & drinks. And all of these features made Gianduia a favourite and main character of the Carnival at the riotous times of 1865. During these pre-Lent feasts gianduiotti [zhee-an-DWO-tee] were “born”. They were individually wrapped plump confections that were very soft and made of chocolate and a hazelnut paste with sugar added (but without milk). Or in other words, gianduia is that creamy chocolate-hazelnut combination that is so widely used in the confectionery nowadays, especially by the world’s biggest producer of chocolate – Ferrero (established by Pietro Ferrero in Alba, Piedmont, Italy in 1946). So you might surprise her (well, not with Kinder or Tic Tac 😛 ) with a box of either Raffaello or Ferrero Rocher confections. The coconut-almond spherical wafers with milk and no chocolate will meld her heart. While the hazelnut-creamed chocolates with milk and chopped hazelnuts in gold-coloured wrapper will simply “rock” her.

See …. The first part of exercise is easy. You are already done. Now it’s time for your both to give full respect to rum-based cocktails in the moony night.  In the 19th century rum had still been considered a low-quality drink and not that refined. It was cheaply made and wasn’t served in upmarket locals. And then a true passion for rum was created by the Bacardí family and the founder of the world’s largest privately-owned spirits company. The family-owned business was established by Facundo Barcadí Massó. He was Spanish-born from Sitges (Catalonia). The Spanish wine merchant immigrated to Santiago de Cuba in 1830 and laid the foundations of today’s company that is internationally recognized.

Unfortunately, the earthquake of 1852 ruined entirely his business but the entrepreneur didn’t give up. Just on the opposite, this natural cataclysm encouraged him to go on and it didn’t tame the strong passion of Bacardí family. Don Facundo developed an unknown production method of making aguardiente (the rum was often nicknamed as “The Firy Water”) lighter, milder and refined. And he succeeded. In 1862 Barcardí Superior rum was born and it was the first aged, light rum in the world. Their business flourished but again it faced an obstacle. In 1880 a fire incinerated the distillery of the Bacardí Family. Even this fatal incident didn’t discourage them to pursue their passion.

Following chronological facts, it should be mentioned the Prohibition in the United Stated when the production and sales of alcoholic drinks were banned, the Bacardí family found a solution to that as well as started inviting Americans to legendary and never-ending weekend parties. Then, some decades later, more specifically in 1960, the revolutionary regime in Cuba confiscated illegally the whole property of the Cuban family-owned company and forced the family to leave the country. Barcadí family lost both their home and business but not their spirit. Again their passion helped them rise like phoenix and start their business from scratch at a new place.

Here is last thing about the famous family. It has chosen a free-tailed bat as a logo for their rum for two reasons. Sugarcane is used in the production of rum and Mexican free-tailed bats are its true pollinators because they eat insects that destroy it. Secondly, fruit bats lived in the rafters of the shop set up by Bacradí family in Santiago de Cuba and these creatures inspired the founder to choose a free-tailed bat as a log that has been extremely recognizable up to now.

So, after this great “chocolate-rum” evening you could be sure you have impressed her. 😉 Good luck. 😀

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  1. Pingback: The Bitter Water | Smile...Laugh...Travel...Love...Be yourself...Enjoy Life

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