Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

A story begins with a time and a place. This is an interesting story where the time and place begins on the Caribbean Island of Barbados back in 1703.

A story about Barbados and its Black Gold Rum.

Our story begins 314 years in Barbados today with an opportunity to join Mount Gay Rum’s -Rum & Pairing Tour, in the name of research of course. We just could not leave Barbados without trying out its most famous export – Mount Gay Rum.

After checking in at the Mount Gay Visitor Centre which is also Mount Gay’s Shop full of rum and rum products such as Mount Gay 1703, we settled into the Bar area to wait till the tour began. Bottles of old rum winked at us from behind the bar and exotic cocktail menus tried to lure us, but we resisted and we were so glad we did!

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados – Rum Pairing Tour

Where is Rum From – Let’s Start at the Legacy Museum

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Legacy Museum – Chancee explains the history of Mount Gay Rum Barbados

The tour started and we headed out of the Visitor Centre to the Legacy Museum where we sampled our first rum – nothing better than an ice-cold Barbados Rum Punch to start a Rum Tour. Our guide, Chancee, explained the historical significance of rum in Barbados through old photos and original documents as well as explaining the importance of the ‘red cap’. (A little on this later)

Back in 1703 John Sober, a friend of Sir John Gay, inherited a rum distillery in Barbados.  Sir John Gay was an accomplished businessman on the island and John Sober asked him to manage the rum distillery for him. Sir John Gay refined the processing of rum production and ran a successful operation, so successful for John Sober and his family that he changed the name to Mount Gay Rum in honour of Sir John Gay on his death.

Originally called “Kill Devil” rum is distilled from Molasses which is a by-product of sugar cane.  In 1642 the Dutch introduced sugar farming to Barbados and it quickly became its major export.  Mount Gay Rum was recognised as superior quality rum and was even known as ‘the rum that invented rum’. The oldest rum in the world.

Sailors were great rum drinkers and English sailors were known to bring back bottles of rum from Barbados to prove that they had sailed the Atlantic. It was also found that rum after travelling across the globe, in oak barrels, improved.

When Lord Nelson died in 1805 in the Battle of Trafalgar, his body was preserved in the cask of his favourite old rum until he was able to be buried.

Mount Gay Rum Barbados and Sailing have a long history together.  Bridgetown was the main port where the Mount Gay Rum Barbados Race started its journey across the world.  Today the company sponsors over 110 regattas around the world and is a major sponsor of the United States Sailing Association.  Now, what about that ‘red cap’!  If you have raced and completed in a regatta that has been sponsored by Mount Gay Rum you are awarded a ‘red cap’, this represents recognition of accomplishment in the sailing community. The ‘red cap’ is never to be sold!

We moved into a small theatre to watch a short film that lasted 7 minutes 11 seconds – just enough time for Chancee to set up our glasses and bottles of rum for our tastings. Chancee has everything timed to perfection so that we can end our Rum Tour on time at the bar.  We all agreed that this was very important.

Mount Gay Barbados Rum Tour –  Tastings Room

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Tasting Room – Mount Gay Rum Products

Could this be the highlight of our tour? Chancee had the group in stitches of laughter with her stories of the consumption of Mount Gay Rum over the years. She blended her own personal family experiences with stories of local consumption.  This is one girl who knows her rum or knows other persons who know their rum.

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

So much rum to choose from, what would be your tipple. Mount Gay 1703?

Glasses of Mount Gay Eclipse Rum was passed around and we were not allowed to let a drop touch our lips before we swirled the glass, checking the colour and the ‘legs’ which showed the viscosity of the rum. What could we smell? We all agreed that we could smell bananas, vanilla, and even apricots.  Apparently, Eclipse Rum was named after a solar eclipse over the South Pole in 1910. For those of us in the group who were not rum drinkers we definitely felt the ‘back of the throat’ burn.

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Black Barrel Tasting

Mount Gay Black Barrell Rum was next.  A rum that had been matured twice in charred aged oak barrels from the US.  Whereas Eclipse Rum gave a good burn at the back of the throat, Black Barrell was definitely a lot smoother with hints of vanilla and caramel.

Mount Gay XO (Mount Gay Extra Old) was the smoothest of the 3 rums tasted having been aged for anytime between 8 and 15 years.  Master Blender Allen Smith, who by the way, must have the best job in Barbados or even the world, when asked how long XO needs to be aged for, answered – ‘it is ready when it is ready’.

Production Hall

Our next part of the tour took us to the Production Hall.  Photography is not allowed in this area.  We were able to see the bottling process where 1500 cases of rum are bottled and packed in a day. It is incredible to think that  Barbados Rum is shipped to over 80 countries in the world from this small Caribbean island.

Mount Gay Rum Bar

Our group was ushered to the Mount Gay Rum Bar.  The group arrived to find more glasses filled with more rum – this time it was the Mount Gay Silver Rum used mostly in cocktails (my type of rum tasting). Fragrant notes of banana, peppermint and citrus could be smelt as we swished and swirled and smelt the rum before tasting.

For those who could handle more Rum, the last tasting for this sector of the tour was the Mauby Rum. We were given the opportunity back in the Tasting Room to smell the bark of the Mauby tree which, to be honest smelt very earthy like a guinea pig cage.  We had already had a taste of Mauby at a restaurant in Bridgetown and all we can say is that it is definitely an acquired taste, even with a hint of citrus peel and cloves.

If you are enjoying our article you may want to PIN it for later:

Now for the Rum Pairing Part of the Tour

For those of us in the group who had booked the Rum Pairing Part of the Tour, we were seated in the outdoor covered restaurant where we sat admiring the turquoise blue of the Caribbean Sea in front of us. Mount Gay Visitors Centre, Restaurant and Bar has one of the best locations on the island overlooking one of the most beautiful Barbados beaches – Brandon’s Beach.

The description in the brochure for the Rum Pairing Tour states 3 small plate pairings with handcrafted cocktails created by our Chef and Mixologist. Small must have a different meaning in Barbados, the dishes that were presented were definitely not small, we would advise you to eat only a small breakfast before this tour.

Now, before we could enjoy the 3 dishes and cocktails that matched the dishes we had a lesson to learn.

Whenever the most important word of the day was used ‘Rum’ we all had to yell ‘more rum’, now, if it was not loud or passionate enough we would have to repeat ourselves till Jamal our Chef was happy that we had it just right.  We lost count after the first 100 ‘more rums’ – maybe it was the Rum!

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Beef Sliders cooked in Mount Gay Rum

Our first dish prepared by Jamal was Beef Sliders (similar to a Beef Burger but of course made with Rum).  We won’t spoil your fun and tell you all the ingredients, as you really have to experience it yourself.  The Mount Gay XO Rum hit the spot in this dish!

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Old Fashioned Cocktail

You can’t enjoy a dish like this without having a Rum Cocktail to compliment the tastes. Adrian, our first Mixologist, prepared for us a Mount Gay Rum XO Old Fashion Cocktail.  We all agreed that it complimented the dish very well and we were eager to see what was to come next.

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

King Fish in Rum

Jamal excelled himself with our next dish of Pan Fried King Fish, pan fried in Mount Gay XO Rum.  He explained that other types of fish could be substituted such as Sword Fish, Mahi Mahi, Dorado or Snapper.

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Mojito preparation

“What Mount Gay Rum Cocktails would be suited for our Pan Fried King Fish?” Ryan our new Mixologist asked our group, as we were all new to this pairing, all we would say was ‘rum’ which meant we had to shout out again ‘more rum’.  What a giggle!  “How about a Mojito?” asked Ryan, our group nodded enthusiastically.

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Our mojito perfect with King Fish

Our refreshing Mojito was made from Mount Gay Pure Silver White Rum – a perfect rum for cocktails. Mojitos were a great choice for fish.

At this stage, everyone had eaten plenty and were all quite full.  What could be next? A savoury dish or a sweet dish whatever was on the menu more Rum was going to be consumed.

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Pineapple Pudding with Rum

Jamal throws some rum into a hot pan and within seconds has created a delicious sauce to go with our Pineapple Rum Pudding.

Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Coconut Slipper Cocktail

One last cocktail for the day – a Coconut Slipper made with Mount Gay Silver Rum with a drizzle of blue curacao, coconut cream, evaporated milk and vanilla essence.  A perfect cocktail to finish off our 3 dishes.

We would recommend a visit to the Mount Gay Visitors Centre and one of their signature Tours as one of the top things to do in Barbados.


Tours Hours and Mount Gay Rum Pricing

Signature Tasting Tour

Discover the history of Mount Gay and taste a selection of their finest rums.

Mon – Fri 9.30am – 2.30pm

Saturdays (winter) 10.30am – 2.30pm

BDS$30 USD$15

Storied Barbadian Lunch Tour

After a tour and rum tasting, enjoy traditional Bajan fare with signature live stations while relaxing on the deck.  Transportation included.

Tuesdays & Thursdays 12 pm (noon)

BDS$140 USD$70

Storied Cocktail Tour

Following a tour and tasting, their mixologists will guide you in crafting your own signature cocktail.

Transportation included.

Wednesdays & Fridays 1.30pm

BDS$130   USD$65

Barbados Rum Tour – Pairing Tour

Includes a tour, followed by 3 small-plate pairings with handcrafted cocktails created by their chef and mixologist. Transportation included.

Mondays 12ppm/ Saturdays (winder) 12pm

BDS$140   USD$70

Mount Gay Barbados Visitors Centre Gift Shop

Mon – Fri 9am – 5pm

Saturdays (winter) 10am – 4pm

N.B. It is recommended to make reservations in advance for the tours.

Barbados Map


Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Barbados Map showing Mount Gay Rum


ADDRESS: Exmouth Gap, Brandons, Spring Garden Highway Bridgetown, Barbados

TELEPHONE: 425 8757/227 8862/227 8864

Mount Gay Rum Barbados email:

WebsiteMount Gay Rum Barbados

Barbados Hotels

We can recommend a range of Barbados Hotels for you:

#1 Hotel in Barbados is: Sandy Lane Barbados

#1 Barbados all inclusive is: Sandals Barbados

Other hotels that you may want to consider check prices and availability here:



Mount Gay Rum Tour Barbados

Barbados Restaurants

From fine dining oceanside restaurants to local Bajan bars, Barbados has a range of restaurants for all tastes and budgets.

Some of our favourite restaurants are:

The Tides Restaurant in Holetown

Tapas Restaurant Barbados

Sitar Indian Restaurant Barbados

Tripadvisor is a great resource for restaurants, bars and cafes in Barbados.


Barbados Weather

The temperature in Barbados is the same throughout the year.  Lowest temperatures range from low to mid-20s to high temperatures of up to 30 degrees.

The rainy season is between May and December which also coincides with the hurricane season in the Caribbean.


Getting Around Barbados has a range of cars available in Barbados.


We would like to thank Mount Gay Rum for our complimentary Mount Gay Rum Tour. As always our opinions are our own.

We would like to thank Hasani Lynch for organising the tour for us and Chancee our guide for an enchanting time.

We would also like to acknowledge the skills of our Chef Jamal and our two mixologists Adrian and Ryan.

P.S. We would like to congratulate Ryan Adamson who has just won Bartender of the Year.  It is a well-deserved win!

We spent over 3 months in Barbados and enjoyed taking advantage of the many tours on offer.  You can read more of our adventures here:

Barbados – An Insiders Guide

Lickrish Food Tour

Action Charters Lunch Catamaran Cruise

Williams Tours – Round Island Tour

Island Tour with Glory Tours

Banks Beer Brewery Tour


Disclosure: Certain links in this post are affiliate links. This means that should you make a purchase via our link, we will receive a commission which will not affect the price you pay. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to,, Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of, Inc. or its affiliates.


how can we help you travel more



  • Maggie says:

    What an awesome experience! I love taking tours that show you how local things are made. The food here looks really good too, Im a huge fan of king fish! My rum loving husband would have loved this!

    • Hi Maggie
      Thanks for your comments. The Rum Tour was so much fun and the food amazing. Definitely a great day out when visiting Barbados.
      Cheers Jane and Duncan

  • Cat says:

    This history behind rum is fascinating. I want to be like Lord Nelson and have my body preserved in my favorite old rum. Too bad I won’t be around to experience it.

    On a separate note, I want to try the Eclipse Rum, simply because of its scent of bananas, vanilla, and apricots.

  • Anda says:

    Hahaha, I could not have left Barbados without trying out their rum either, Jane. I don’t drink rum as such, but I love cocktails and a refreshing Mojito sounds like heaven! If we ever make it to Barbados, I’ll make sure to go on this rum tour.

  • Bhushavali says:

    I like these kinda places. Been to Scottish Whiskey Experience, Heineken Experience and a few more. It’s always fun to learn the history and process of a drink!
    Isn’t it a bit weird that his name is ‘Sober’! I wonder what kind of drinker was he!!!
    Tour included dishes tasting with rum? That’s new!

  • Amy Chung says:

    What a fun tour to go on. I’m not a rum fan but I can certainly imagine how awesome it would have been for you. Love all the cool history and learning where it all originated from. Very cool fact about Lord Nelson being preserved in a cask of his favourite rum! The tasting room looks amazing with all the barrels stacked so high.

    • Hi Amy
      Thanks for your comments. It was a fun day out, we learnt so much and enjoyed the Rum and the Food pairing part of the tour.
      Cheers Jane and Duncan

  • blair villanueva says:

    One of the things I always on ears is visiting vineyards and distilleries. I am just an occasional drinker, but visiting these places is an amazing experience and a privilege. Not all travelers are into visiting vineyards and learning how they make their top rum.
    Wine and rum tasting is even better when done in its home distillery per se.

  • Medha says:

    I’ve been on beer tasting tours, wine pairing tours and even whiskey tasting but ever actually heard of or experienced Rum tasting. Not that I’m much of a rum drinker, I’m not a fan, to be honest, but the whole experience, especially the pairing part, sounds really intriguing. Barbados Rum Punch has to make for a great start of the tour I’m sure, and the beef sliders look so inviting. I can imagine they must’ve tasted amazing with the rum.

  • Aareeba says:

    I do not drink but looks like it’s a must do thing when visiting barbodas. I am definitely gonna share this with my friends who loves to try these . I love the sound of Eclipse Rum as I love banana-vinilla combinations. Thanks for sharing this great piece of info

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.