Dead Man’s Fingers – rum done differently


THE world’s been upended for far too long, but one thing remains undeniable – our spirit to claim and own who we are and how the planet perceives us. This is where Dead Man’s Fingers (DMF), a premium rum, created in a famous seafood joint in Cornwall, UK, is changing the way we distinguish and savour rum. In its quest to have us resist the usual, DMF’s arsenal embraces a further taste-bud-teasing, first-to-market range of original ready-to-drink choices, each one ready to rock the status quo.

Bold and brave

Besides delivering a premium quality liquor, with a higher alcohol percentage on the spirit aperitifs scale than its competitors, what’s immediately apparent about all things Dead Man’s Fingers is its distinctive and original packaging, along with its coated and beautifully embossed bespoke bottles. Nothing about it is obvious, beyond the blend.

DMF welcomes the passionate and adventurous, the vocal and opinionated who juggle life but always know when to stop and take a sip of something that rewards their uninhibited commitment to kicking convention to the kerb.

Arriving in the market with three varietals, Dead Man’s Fingers’ current offering is set to grow beyond its original Spiced, Dark and Coconut varietals’ introduction. Think Coffee and exotic Pineapple and the path to celebrating your true, unapologetic self just got a whole lot shorter.

A taster of Spiced delivers with its eye-teasing warm amber. As to its popularity, that’s confirmed when this spirited crowd-pleaser meets your nose, delivering notes of vanilla, orange, raisin, and demerara sugar, all before your taste buds get a look in. The nectar rewards your palate with hints of saffron cake, Pedro Ximénez ice cream, caramel and vanilla with cinnamon, nutmeg, and orange notes.

Next in the mix is Dark, one that South Africans will most certainly gravitate towards, given its healthy local market share. “Spiced is the flagship in the UK,” Johan Oosthuizen, managing director of Halewood Artisanal Spirits South Africa confirms. “In South Africa’s rum category, dark rum is a significant portion of the market, and we therefore responded and included it. Then we acknowledged the so-called ‘flavoured rums’ (spirit aperitifs) are emerging and creating excitement in the rum category, in the same way as flavoured gins did for its class.”

Blending in is tropical Coconut, clear to the eye; coconut, mango, clove, and runny caramel on the nose; while on the tongue, a taste torrent ensues, delivering coconut-ice and a touch of lime peel. “Coconut is very versatile for cocktail mixing and equally familiar,” Oosthuizen endorses.

Add pre-mixed cans, offering an instant throw down shy of a bar, and suddenly there’s an encore. Think ready-to-drink, crack-and-consume options to the range of flavours – Cuba Libre (rum & cola), Rattlesnake (rum & raspberry) and Dead Mule (rum & ginger). 

These three bespoke flavour and taste combinations are a South African exclusive, offering a perfectly blended and well-balanced thirst quencher, all within a loud and proud, ready-to-drink can that conspicuously sets it apart.

The soon-to-be-added Coffee and Pineapple lend themselves to another style of drinking – shooters – thus opening the brand’s serving versatility. “During the lockdown and the ban on alcohol, consumers reverted to home brews like pineapple beer, and that, in turn, reinvigorated the desire for pineapple flavoured alcoholic drinks,” Oosthuizen concludes.

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