• Andrew Laird


In life you tend to have your favourite foods and drinks that make you happy, peak your interest and sometimes grow into passions and even obsessions. These obsessions create a desire to learn as much as possible about your beloved treat and to indulge in as much of it as possible in the ultimate search for perfection.


This is exactly the journey I am on. My passion for Rum and Fine Chocolate has become an obsession. I am constantly looking for new and interesting expressions of both, while obsessing over the details of process, ingredients and origins.


Foursquare - Zinfandel Cask Blend Rum

There are so many fantastic Fine Chocolate and Rum producers out there that, thankfully, I have only scratched the surface of both. However, I do already have my favourites. They will take some beating in terms of quality, history and complexity.


In terms of Rum, top of the pile for me currently are Foursquare Distillery, Barbados and Worthy Park, Jamaica. They both represent different styles of Rum but both are producing outstanding and complex expressions of the highest quality. I’m yet to try their full ranges but the Foursquare Zinfandel Cask and the Worthy Park Single Estate Reserve are the front runners of the ones I’ve had the pleasure of tasting.



With regards to Chocolate I have been enjoying bars from some of the finest bean-to-bar, or even tree-to-bar, producers recently. We are very lucky here in the UK as we have some very talented and passionate chocolate makers such as ‘Chocolate Tree’ – Edinburgh, ‘Chocolarder’ – Cornwall, ‘Dormouse’ – Manchester and ‘Duffy’s’ – Grimsby amongst others. I have also had the pleasure of trying some amazing bars from around the world including ‘Marou’ – Vietnam, ‘Omnom’ – Iceland and ‘Akesson’s’ – Madagascar.


These producers, along with many more, are producing chocolate that challenges the complexity of fine wines. The flavours from the origin beans are what shines through and their processes are completely focussed on showcasing these flavours in the finished bar.


What we have tried to do here at Cane & Bean is to create a product that showcases the quality of both elements. We have tried to strike a perfect balance between the rum and cacao to allow the quality of the Foursquare blend to shine with the added layer of complexity of the Peruvian Criollo Cacao. They were the perfect match for each other and our focus was on trying to perfect the process that would show them off in all their glory.

What we have produced is the result of my passion and obsession in a bottle.


But, as I said, the journey has just begun. Who knows where it will take us next……but I can’t wait to find out.


Watch this space as we will be releasing regular blogs about Rum, Chocolate, Pairings and Recipe Ideas.



We hope you will join us on our journey.