The Rum Exchange in the heart of the Financial District, is the latest entry to the Toronto bar scene. Opening last week it is the only bar devoted entirely to the lively spirit of rum. Located at 67 Richmond St, a simple rum barrel marks the spot of this hip new bar that will surely be the new hangout for laid back suits and hipsters.
Manager Rumen Dimitrov (founder of Pravda and Troika), says that the Rum Exchange “will not only educate you and broaden your horizons” but will also be an authentically great time. Fifty-five rum selections will be on offer, including a number of top shelf bottles, like Flor de Cana from Nicaragua and Ron Zacapa, a premium rum produced in Guatemala.
A completely black interior is surprisingly cosy with its chandeliers and lit candles. The long space is lined with a single row cocktail tables made of rum barrels and a large U-shaped sofa at the very back. Lots of room to mingle and sway to the sounds of DJ Kayson, the resident house DJ.
The focus at The Rum Exchange is the return to the classic rum cocktail. Opening night rum tasting included Cuba Libres, Mojitos and their signature drink the Eye Opener accompanied by small tasting plates of charcuterie. Rum tasting can be reserved in advance and is a great way to learn about rum and get a lesson on mixing cocktails the right way and savouring rum the way it was intended.
The highlight of the evening was the tasting of the Ron Zacapa spiced rum, accompanied by a tasting plate of Cuban cheese, guava paste, salted chocolate with caramel. While the Rum Exchange is not a bar restaurant, a selection of small plates from local Caribbean suppliers will be featured accompaniments.
If you’ve got a long relationship with rum and are an aficionado or you’re just looking to discover the lively spirit that rum can be, The Rum Exchange needs to be on your list of bars.