Gin producer Hayman’s brings rum production back to London

The family behind Hayman’s Gin is launching a rum-blending house – the first to be based in the City of London in over a hundred years – as it unveils its first rum.

Hayman’s have launched Charles Merser & Co., London’s first rum blending house for over one hundred years.

James Hayman said the company was proud to be bringing the lost craft of rum-blending back to the city of London, with the launch of new blending house Charles Merser & Co. The blending house, which will be open to the trade and consumers from the middle of October, is based just off the Strand in the City of London. It has set up the new rum venture as a subsidiary of parent company Hayman Group Limited, having registered the trade mark in the UK and Europe back in January this year.

Hayman said the move marked a return to the family’s historic involvement in London’s rum trade, which at its height had seen a network of merchant rum blending houses, sourcing stock from West India Docks to create their own proprietary blends.

“We’re proud to play a role in bringing the lost craft of rum blending back to the city,” he said, adding that the merchant’s skill lay not in distilling but in the sourcing, blending and secondary maturation of the rum/

“With Merser’s we aim to explore that history, to bring back those lost traditions and to encourage a renaissance of interest in London rum,” he said.

Brand director Jonathan Gibson said the role of gin in London’s social history was well known and well documented, but that rum’s story had largely remained “untold”.

“London was for a long time at the heart of the global trade in rum, with blending houses playing a vital role in creating the finished rums that were widely enjoyed in the 18th and 19th Centuries,” he said.

“With Merser’s we aim to explore that history, to bring back those lost traditions and to encourage a renaissance of interest in London rum.”

The company’s first rum, Merser’s Double Barrel, will be launched in Waitrose next month (RRP: £38), with further blends planned to follow over the coming months.

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