ON THE SIDEBAR
While 2021 showed a scattering of timid rum festival openings after the ravages of COVID, it was 2022 that showed that the world had reopened with a bang. By the time the year drew to a close, my initial post for that year listed 60+ festivals around the world which either focused exclusively on rum, or had it as a major component of the show – and it’s a fair bet I was undercounting smaller regional festivals which only received local exposure and weren’t widely advertised.
These rum expos ranged from the cricket club party atmosphere with just a few brands of the Guyana Rum Festival, to the behemoths of Paris, UK and Berlin. Granted the whisky expos were bigger (Paris’s WhiskyLive was larger than anything I’d ever seen before) but the sheer amount of rum-based exhibitions, festivals, shows and fairs on display around the world was astounding. Australia had two, Africa debuted in the Ivory Coast, there were at least four I know of in France, the Caribbean had a few, I’m sure there were some in Latin America I never heard of, and the USA had at least ten. Canada is the odd man out in the Americas with none, though given the prevalence of maritimers and West Indians in the east of the country I’m sure it’s just a matter of time.
Below is the best listing I was able to put together, of all the rum festivals and associated trade fairs or other shows which feature rum in some significant way. The dates are as per any online postings or private messages people have provided. For those events which did not update their sources or respond to queries, I have placed their entries below the main body, with notes on the last time they were held for reference: I’ll be checking regularly to see if they have confirmed a show or not. Also, not all of them are true rum-only-specific, laser-focused festivals that are done on a weekend: some are weeklong cultural events where rum, food, music and other spirits feature, others are parties (of varying sizes) where rum is drunk – so ensure you know to which you are going, and why you’re attending (and if you want to know how to survive one, read this article on how).
So, then: for those who like to plan their attendances, save up the pesos, placate (or warn) the significant other, book travel tickets and make other rum-related plans as far in advance as possible, you have enough here to be going along with. Hope to see you all, in at least one of them. And, as always, if you see I missed one, or got a date wrong, by all means let me know.
- 26-28 Hanse Spirit Int’l Trade Fair, Germany
- 07-12 Hopetown Music & Rum Festival, Bahamas
- 10-12 Miami Rum Congress, USA
- 18 West Palm Beach Tropical Rum Fest, USA (FB)
- 18 Montreal Rum Fest I (FB)(IG) (see September for Part II)
- 25-26 Guyana Rum Festival, Guyana (FB) (IG)
- 05-06 Craft Spirits Berlin Festival, Germany (Trade)
- 19 I Hart Rum Festival, Melbourne Australia (FB)(Tickets)
- 19-21 Prowein Trade Fair, Germany1
- 25 Taste of Rum, San Juan, Puerto Rico (FB)
- 01 Australian Distillers Festival, Australia (IG)
- 01-03 Paris Rhumfest, France (FB)
- 11-16 Madeira Rum Festival, Madeira (FB#)(FB)
- 14-16 BorderShop Rum & Whiskey Festival, Denmark
- 22 Chicago Rum Festival, USA (FB)
- 03-05 1st International Rum Summit, Paris *Trade/professional conference
- 06 Oslo Rum Festival, Norway (FB)
- 07-09 The Rum Day (Sugar Cane Experience), Milan, Italy (IG)
- 13 Stockholm Rum Festival, Sweden (FB)(IG)
- 20 Prague International Rumfest, Czech Republic (FB)
- 21 Bar Show Budapest (Hungary) (FB)(IG) (*Rum + other spirits)
- 02-03 Lucerne Gin & Rum Festival, Switzerland (FB)(IG)
- 10 New York Rum Festival, USA (FB) (includes Trade session)
- 10 Leeds Gin & Rum Festival, UK (FB only)(Tickets)
- 10-11 Bordeaux Rum Festival, France (FB)(IG)
- 12-16 Bonaire Rum Week, Bonaire (FB)
- 13-14 Bar Convent Brooklyn, USA (Trade)(FB)(IG)
- 23-24 4th Rum Love Festival, Poland (FB)(IG)
- 24 Birmingham Rum Festival (FB)(IG)
- 03-04 Imbibe Live (Trade), UK (FB)(IG)
- 08 Manchester Rum Festival, UK (FB)(IG)
- 08-09 Berlin RumFest, Germany (FB)(IG)
- 14-15 TWE RumShow, UK
- 23-28 Tales of the Cocktail, USA (FB)(IG)
- 12 Brooklyn Rum Festival (FB)(IG)
- 16-18 Panama Rum Festival (FB)(IG)
- 19 Alabama Rum Fest (FB) *To be confirmed
- 27 Fukuoka Rum Fest, Japan *Website and social media to come
- 01-02 Sugar Cane Days, Hamburg, Germany
- 02 Scottish Rum Festival, Edinburgh, UK (FB)(IG)
- 03 Singapore RumBellion (FB) *To be held in Bali this year
- 08 Los Angeles Rum Festival & Congress, USA (FB)
- 09 WhiskyNet Rumshow, Budapest (Hungary)(FB)(IG) *To be confirmed
- 15-16 Whisky N Rum Show, Denmark (formerly Nordic RumFest) (FB)
- 16 San Francisco Rum Festival & Congress, USA (FB)
- 16 Montreal Rum Fest II (FB)(IG)
- 22-23 Vienna Rum Festival, Austria (FB)(IG)
- 01-02 ShowRum, Italy (FB)(IG)
- 07 Zeewicjk Whisky Rum an Zee, Holland (FB)(IG)
- 09-11 Bar Convent Berlin (Trade only)
- 13-15 Abidjan Rum Festival, Ivory Coast (FB)(IG)
- 14-15 Nantes Spirits Festival, France (FB)(IG)
- 14-15 UK Rum Festival, UK (FB) (16th is unconfirmed as Trade Day)
- 14-15 Salon Du Rhum, Belgium (FB)
- 19-22 Barbados Food & Rum Festival, Barbados (FB)(IG)
- 21-23 WhiskyLive, France (Paris)(FB)(IG)
- 30-31 Barbados Rum Experience, Barbados (FB)(IG)2
- 31 Caribbean Rum Awards/ St. Barth Rum Festival (Day 1 of 6)(FB)
- 01-05 Barbados Rum Experience, Barbados (FB)(IG)
- 01-05 Caribbean Rum Awards/ St. Barth Rum Festival (Days 2-6 of 6)(FB)
- 03-04 Danish Rum & Whiskey Festival, Denmark (FB)
- 11-12 Miami Rum Renaissance, USA (FB)
- 25-26 The Craft Rum Show Manchester, UK (FB)(IG)3
- 10 Caribbean Food & Rum Festival Hollywood, FL, USA (FB)
Tours / Mutiples / Other
- Gin & Rum Festival (around the UK, various dates)
- WhiskyLive (around the world, various dates – not all have rums, but where this is known, an entry will be added above)
- July 01-31 Japanese Craft Rum Cola Festival, Japan *Website and social media to come; all month long events
- Singapore Cocktail Festival is 5-21 March, 2023: rums are featured but not central.
Not Yet Scheduled
The events below have not been updated for 2023 so far, but have a good expectation of being held. (Last checked for updates January 12, 2023)
- Brisbane Rum Revolution, Australia (FB) (last held November 2022)
- Finest Spirits Festival, (FB)(IG) Munich (last held September 2, 2022 – DELAYED to Feb 2024)
- Jamaica Rum Festival, Jamaica (FB) (last held June 25, 2022)
- Seattle Rum Festival, USA (FB) (last held September 2, 2022
- Sola Rum, Food & Wine Festival, USA (FB)(IG)(last held October 15, 2022)
- Taipei Int’l Wine & Spirits Festival (FB) (last held November 18-21, 2022)
- Taiwan Rum Fest (FB) (last held September 18, 2022)
- Think Rum Trade Day, London (FB)(IG) (last held November 8, 2022)
- Whisky Live Singapore (+ Rum)(FB)(Ticketing) (last held November 19-20, 2022)
- Singapore RumFest in July, awaiting confirmation.
Dormant / Cancelled
Older or non-recurring Festivals (not held in 2022; occasionally checked for updates, just in case)
- Cologne Spirits, Germany
- Glasgow Rum Festival, UK (link is a FB search)
- Toronto Rum Festival, Canada (postponed from 2020)
- Rum Love Festival, Poland (FB) (last held 2019)
- Milan Rum Festival, Italy (last in March 2020)
- Mostly wine but significant rum and spirits booths
- BRE is a one-week tour and educational symposium for Barbados rum promotion, plus events and participant parties; it is not, strictly speaking, a festival.
- This is part of the year long gin festivals program organized by the “Gin To My Tonic” people. The full 2023 schedule, mostly gin related, is here.
Thank you for this article. I just finished planning my calendar the moment you posted it.
Have you already planned which festival you plan to visit?
I would be honored to meet in person…
Chris – Rum Explorer
Honestly have no idea yet, as I’m upending my life (again) in 2023, and will not be as close to Europe as formerly. If Canada ever gets one, I’ll definitely attend that; might try Seattle or Chicago because they’ll be closer. But if I can, I’ll be doing Berlin and Paris and hopefully TWE in UK. I’ve always had good times in all three.
Hello! Awesome list! I am working on Singapore Rum Fest right now for July 2023. Possible to add into the list? Would love to get that in the calendar.
Without question. Send me date(s), website and social media link, and I’ll add it right away.
Thank you for curating this list. The Whiskynet Rum Show in Budapest is planned for 9 September this year. There no communication about it yet.
There is going to be a Budapest Bar show as well with some rum representation on 21 May 2023: http://bar-show.hu/
Hope to see you somewhere in person 🙂
Don’t know what plans are for later in the year with my travels…but I live in hope.