Ryu is currently caught up amid the vodou and the bokors and the hounfours of Haiti. It’s an exhausting business, as you’ll see in Chapters. So, I decided it would be a good idea to do what I think everyone should do when the going gets rough: break for cocktails. And in Haiti and on other Caribbean islands that means rum, the liquor made from cane sugar, Mon.
Rum kept the British Royal Navy as well as just about every other seagoing group (including pirates) afloat, fueled the slave trade, and might just have instigated the American Revolution, since it’s well known that some of those “founding fathers” were running rum, and we all know how fired up a group drinking kill-devil, demon water, Nelson’s blood, or screech can get.
There are numerous grades and variations of rum—light, gold, spiced, dark, flavored, overproof, and premium—and many countries produce similar, sugarcane-based spirits. But in Haiti, as well as other Caribbean nations, the liquor of choice is rum. Haitian rum is dark or “black” and full of flavor. It’s great for cocktails: Cuba libre, daiquiri, pina colada, mai-tai, mojito, painkiller, and … yes, of course, the zombie.
—Erin Orison, DEAD LOVE/The Daily Slice