Looking for a straightforward website about product reviews and cocktail recipes? Take a peek—or more likely, a deep dive — into The Rum Howler Blog. While it won’t win any awards for modern aesthetics, as it looks very much like a blog launched in the 2000s, The Rum Howler remains a much-viewed, much-referenced source on the best spirits, wines, and cocktails.
Author Chip Dykstra has your typical blogger’s background. Writing in other forums about his passion for rum, he generated reader interest and soon was authoring product reviews for other blogs. He launched his own site in 2009 and has been posting his thoughts on all manners of booze and mixed drinks, generating more than 10 million views.
Of particularly interest to Better Bartending readers will be the website’s extensive cocktail list. Dykstra began including a recommended cocktail or two with his reviews and, years later, this has morphed into a comprehensive list of drink recipes for white rum, dark rum, spiced rum, gin, vodka, Canadian whiskey, cachaça, and beyond.
Professionally, Dykstra runs a memorabilia store in Alberta, Canada. By his own admission, the content on his blog “represents more of a knowledgeable layman’s perspective than that of a professional taster.” But his considerable knowledge is undeniable, making his blog an excellent source of reviews and recipes for any bartender.