The Barbadian rum shop is an integral part of the country’s history and culture. This is fitting, as Barbados is said to be the birth place of rum.
In Barbados, rum shops are regarded as a place to gather and, as the locals say, lime all while enjoying rum and other spirits. Here you will find rum sold by the bottle, and at considerably cheaper prices, than that sold in bars – which typically sell their drinks by the glass or shot. The bottles differ in size, ranging from minis to flasks to pints and half bottles. To complete your beverage, you will get ice, the mixer of your choice and a cup for each person in your group.
In addition to liquor, many rum shops also sell dry goods and delicious, ready-to-eat foods such as pastries and cutters (sandwiches made from buns typically stuffed with ham, cheese or fish). Some also sell the traditional local delicacy of pudding and souse (picked pork with steamed sweet potatoes) on Saturdays.
One of the remarkable characteristics of rum shops is their social element. In these laid back places, you will find locals exchanging gossip and discussing various topics such as: politics, current events and sports while firing a drink. You will also find men playing draughts (checkers) and dominoes.
While rum shops do not have any “bells and whistles”, they offer visitors a truly Bajan experience. So if you are looking for things to do in Barbados and want to experience local culture, Lickrish Food Tours encourages you to check out a rum shop or two. There are hundreds across the breadth and width of the island and they can be easily identified by their brightly coloured exteriors – many of which bare the names and logos of popular alcoholic beverages.