This rich, forbiddingly dark Demerara style of rum developed in Guyana and became the heart of Navy rum, often alongside the punchy rums of Jamaica, although a Navy rum such as Lamb’s might combine as many as 18 rums in its traditionally tannic, foursquare blend, including spirit from Trinidad.
Sailors were given a daily tot from 1655 until the ration was abolished, as recently as 1970. Originally it was given to sailors neat when the beer ran out (water was not safe to drink as it became rancid very quickly at sea and it was often taken from polluted rivers, such as the Thames).
They called the ration Pusser’s rum because the ship’s purser (pusser is the slang for it) was responsible for issuing the it. Pusser’s became the original rum of the British Navy.
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