Miami rum festival events include The Mai-Kai, week of VIP parties

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Miami Rum Renaissance Festival

The highlight of the fourth annual Miami Rum Renaissance Festival certainly promises to be the two-day Grand Tasting events on Saturday and Sunday, April 21-22, when the Deauville Beach Resort in Miami Beach hosts thousands of enthusiasts and industry VIPs for two full days of sampling the best cane spirits from around the world.

But in addition to those festivities, a wide range of events and activities are scheduled under the banner of Miami Rum Week starting Monday, April 16. Among the highlights:

* VIP parties sponsored by leading rum companies will be held at the Deauville and other area venues. These include the Botran Bartenders Bash Kick Off Party on Monday, the Great Rum Challenge on Tuesday, parties by the Brugal and Barcardi brands on Thursday, plus more on Friday and Saturday. The general public can attend by purchasing a VIP ticket. The $250 pass gets you into all the week’s events, including early entry to the Grand Tasting events. Tickets to individual VIP parties are also available.

Bartenders work The Mai-Kai's kitchen service bar. The top shelf contains rare and collectible rums that date back more than 50 years. (Stop 5)
Bartenders work The Mai-Kai's kitchen service bar. The top shelf contains rare and collectible rums that date back more than 50 years. (Photo by Hurricane Hayward)

* On Wednesday, it’s Tiki Time at The Mai-Kai with a bus bringing attendees from the Deauville to the historic Polynesian restaurant and rum Mecca in Fort Lauderdale. Happy hour runs from 5 to 7 p.m., DJ Mike “Jetsetter” Jones will be spinning swank tunes, and festivalgoes are also being offered a specially priced dinner package that includes the legendary Polynesian show with preferred seating and a complimentary rum cocktail. It’s likely you’ll also run into early Hukilau attendees, with the 11th annual Tiki weekender taking place April 19-22 in Fort Lauderdale.

The Grand Tasting at Miami Rum Renaissance Festival, 2011
The Grand Tasting at Miami Rum Renaissance Festival, 2011. (Photo from

On the weekend, the Grand Tastings take center stage from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Deauville ballroom. Attendees can sample more than 200 rums, meet brand representatives, attend seminars, watch cocktail competitions, browse island lifestyle exhibits, and much more. Without a VIP pass, individual tickets are $40 per day. We’ll have a more in-depth preview of the weekend rum tastings, seminars and competitions in an upcoming blog.

And if you find yourself looking for a late night spot to twist the night away, look no further than the Deauville’s Jazz Club, where Mod Miami hosts “Rum-Rum-A-Go-Go” parties on Saturday and Sunday. These free events start at 11 p.m. on Saturday and 9 p.m. on Sunday.

Buy tickets, check the full schedule and more at and like the Facebook page.

Related posts
Mai-Kai Cocktail Guide | Hukilau 2012 preview

Past coverage
Rum Renaissance Zombie fest at The Mai-Kai

Rum Renaissance 2012 trailer

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