Chairman’s Reserve Strong & Spice Project

Chairman’s Spice Lab

Chairman’s Spice Lab is a competition where the bartenders were given the chance to conceptualize their own spiced rum using 6 mandatory spices – vanilla, dried orange, nutmeg, cloves, almonds, cinnamon – and by adding 3 more of their choice into the mix. More details on the Chairman’s website.

Me along with 10 other bartenders from the UK got past the preliminary round into the second round where I need to make my concept a reality and then promote it as if it were a real commercial product.

For The Perfect Punch


1 of sour,
2 of sweet,
3 of strong,
4 of weak,
5 of spice to make it nice.

The idea behind my Chairman’s Strong & Spice is inspired from the Caribbean rhyme for the perfect punch. I made the ideal dry spiced rum to use in a punch. The flavours work with the majority of sweet & sour combinations in order to make an effortless, multilayered drink. You only need a lime, some sugar syrup and maybe a dash of soda as the rum brings the Strong & Spice to the table/drink.

The 3 extra spices spices that I’m using for my spiced rum are:

Earl Grey Tea: tea was and still is a common ingredient in punches, that adds length to the drink and also flavour and complexity.
Pink Pepper: also an often element found in punches and some tropical drinks are cognacs, wines and fortified wines. I have found that pink pepper can work very well in simulating that kind of red, rich flavour profile while adding a very pleasant hot spiciness to a drink.
Lemon Zest: it adds a sharpness needed through all the rich, warm spices.

The Perfect Punch:
Lime juice – 25ml
Sugar syrup – 25ml
Chairman’s Strong & Spice – 50ml
Soda Water – dash

Shake all the ingredients except the soda and transfer to a highball glass filled with cubed ice. Top with the soda and enjoy!

Strong n’ Coke
Chairman’s Strong & Spice – 50ml

Add the rum to a highball, fill with ice then top with Coca-cola. Garnish with a lime wedge a few pink peppercorns.

You can follow Strong & Spice on Instagram for more ideas for cocktails/serves.

The Diamond of Dennery No.2 from Milk Bar, Reading

The Rum Barrel Take

Chairman’s Strong & Spice uses Chairman’s Reserve Rum Original as the base liquid which is then infused from 4 to 16 days with the aforementioned spices. The infusion happens separately and then they are blended after my own recipe and palate. Bottled at 40% ABV with no sugar added.

On the nose smells quite Christmassy with notes of kola nut, cinnamon and tea. Spicy and warm.

On the palate the pink pepper comes out quite strong giving a nice vermouth-y aroma along with some heat. Bit of citrus, plenty of cinnamon and cloves.

Finish is medium to short with black tea and a slight bitterness that makes you come back for more.