Asia’s First Rum Vault at Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui
Set on the edge of a 50-metre-long (165 foot) infinity lap pool, CoCoRum at Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui overlooks the islands that dot the horizon of the Gulf of Thailand. Designed by celebrated architect and landscape artist Bill Bensley of Bensley Design Studios, the laidback ambience of the bar affords a stylish beverage experience curated by the affable bar manager, I Made Dwiki Prayoga. With a passion for rums, having visited rum distilleries around the world to study the culture and traditions, Dwiki takes pride in creating the very best cocktails to reflect the tropical spirit.
Tracing Its Roots
“Our concept is a celebration of three unique beverage culture – Thailand, South American and the Caribbean,” shares Dwiki, acknowledging their long-standing partnership with Proof & Co. A combination of two words - coconut and rum – the bar reflects the history and culture of Thailand where the mainstay of Koh Samui is the quintessential coconut. Complementing the personality of the bar manager, the signature cocktails here explore the flavour of the island in its true sense. “The menu focuses on ‘tiki’ and tropical drinks made with locally-sourced ingredients with a focus on sustainability,” he confirms.
Yo Ho Ho …
In addition to decadent cocktails, CoCoRum is home to Asia’s first Rum Vault (and only the second in the world) with more than 150 unique rums in the collection. “Surrender to the spirit of the Caribbean or hop on a Thai rum trail,” suggests Dwiki. Drawing guests into the nefarious pirate-life, the Alcatraz prison door opens into a cozy room with a tasting table as its centrepiece, surrounded by a stellar collection of "imprisoned" rums from across the world.
“Savour an ever-growing list of cane spirits exclusive to Four Seasons with dedicated rum flights where five rums from different countries are paired with homemade accompaniments or even imported cigars for those who prefer,” he explains. What’s this bar man’s favourite? “Phraya Deep Matured Gold Rum,” he suggests. Crafted in the province of Nakhon Pathom in Thailand, it is the only luxury rum from Asia and is notable for the use of carefully selected top-quality rum. Undergoing a deep maturation technique, developed in accordance with Southeast Asian climate, and aged for 7-12 years, Phraya Deep Matured Gold Rum draws out an exotic taste for the palate. “Smooth, rich in flavour and perfectly balanced with notes of crème brûlée and butterscotch with an underlying fruitiness of fresh pineapple and citrus, no wonder it is recognised as the first Asian luxury sipping rum.” Other rums on Dwiki’s favourites list are Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva, Matusalem Gran Reserva 15, and Don Papa Rum.
Experimenting with flavours and techniques, the first batch of rum aged and bottled at the Rum Vault – El Presidente - is available in the private bar in the villas at the Resort. “Aged EL Presidente, which aged in CoCoRum barrel and homemade ingredients is inspired by the President Mario García Menocal, who ran Cuba from 1913 to 1921,” shares Dwiki. Mastering the fine art of ageing, the team of expert mixologists has infused a cask character into the cocktail mix of Diplomatico Mantuano and Macino Rosso with a splash of Joseph Carton Triple Sec and grenadine, letting it age for three months at the Rum Vault.
So, what can one expect at CoCoRum Bar and the Rum Vault? “Unparalleled service, full of personality and attention to detail,” smiles Dwiki.
Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui, Thailand