The Cape Coral-based rum distillery is launching RumShine, a 100 proof rum product infused with Fresh From Florida fruits.
After more than a year in development, Wicked Dolphin Rum has started distilling RumShine, which complements the company's award-winning silver and spiced rums, as well as its barbecue sauce and hot sauces.
"I wanted to have a total Florida feel and taste," said JoAnn Elardo, owner of the rum distillery. "As a product it should feel like authentic Florida."
RumShine will come in roughly 26-ounce and 33-ounce Mason-like jars — depending on the flavor — the latter of which will include the fruit the spirit is infused with. The first flavors to launch will be blueberry, strawberry and apple pie, but more flavors are on the horizon, Elardo said.
She began developing the product after being inspired on one of many trips to the east coast of Florida, and the sugar cane fields she drove past. It got her thinking of the early sugar cane plantation owners who would bring in immigrants to work the fields, the glades men, she said.
"These were the men that cleared the sugar cane fields in the late 1800s and early 1900s," she said. "These guys were taming the wilderness and planting the canes."
Wicked Dolphin Rum, at 131 S.W. Third Place in Cape Coral, plans to launch RumShine at its distillery and at local businesses in June, with plans to open it up for distribution in July. For more information, visit wickeddolphin.com or call 242-5244.
• Rolling Stone Libation Co. at 1175 Homestead Road in Lehigh Acres has closed. Former owner Bruce Keisling can be found at Maria's Pizza & Pasta at 1129 Homestead Road N. during dinner service Mondays-Saturdays. Call 368-2020.
• Lamoraga, a contemporary Spanish restaurant serving tapas and entrees, opened at 3936 Tamiami Trail N. in Naples in April. For more information, visit lamoragarestaurant.com or call 331-3669.
Beer summit and dinner at Crowne Plaza
Sample brews from SweetWater Brewing Co. at a beer summit and dinner today at Shoeless Joe's at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Fort Myers. Located at 13051 Bell Tower Drive, the event kicks off at 5:30 p.m. featuring a guided tour of Atlanta-based SweetWater's beers and ales paired with a seasonal four-course menu prepared by Crowne Plaza's executive chef Hector Garcia. The menu includes barbecue shrimp wrapped in apple wood-smoked bacon, a mixed salad of baby greens, arugula, honey-roasted pecans, sun- dried berries and flash-fried goat cheese; grilled New York strip served with artichoke au gratin potato, grilled pencil asparagus topped with a beer mushroom demiglace; and a chocolate trilogy cake with raspberry sauce, whipped cream and fresh berries. Space for the special event is limited. Tickets are $55 per person, all inclusive. To reserve, contact Jim Larkin at 210-2460 or email@example.com.
Craft beer dinner at Agave Bar & Grill
Beer aficionados can delve into the world of craft beer at Agave Bar & Grill at 2380 Vanderbilt Beach Road in Naples, when the restaurant hosts a four-course craft beer dinner on May 21. The event, which starts at 6 p.m., features Victory Brewing Co. brews. Chef Andrew McLaughlin Jr. designed the dinner to showcase Agave's American menu, including items such as the agave blend beef slider served on a mini kaiser roll with bacon jam, heirloom tomato relish and crisp romaine lettuce, paired with Headwaters Pale Ale or the citrus-cracked pepper marinated salmon presented over wilted spinach, paired with Prima Pils. The craft beer dinner is $50 per person plus tax and gratuity. Space is limited and reservations are required; call 598-3473. For more information, visit AgaveNaples.com.
Tap takeover at Matzaluna Italian Restaurant
Raise your glasses in honor of American Craft Beer Week at Matzaluna Italian Restaurant at 1200 Periwinkle Way on Sanibel. Through Friday the restaurant will offer special craft draft beer and pairing menu, as well as a "Paddle and Pizza" promotion for $20. Started by the Brewers Association, a nonprofit on behalf of a majority of U.S. breweries, American Craft Beer Week celebrates the culture and community of craft beer and gives breweries and beer businesses the opportunity to connect with fans. Matzaluna is part of the Prawnbroker Restaurant Group. For more information, call 422-1998 or visit matzaluna.net.
Best alternative burger award
Sundial Beach Resort & Spa was named the winner of the Best Alternative Burger in the recent Burgers & Bubbles competition at the Promenade at Bonita Springs with executive chef Criss Menassa's creation of the Ahi Tuna Burger. Criss initially obtained a recipe from a master French chef for a ground tuna burger, blending it with a Vietnamese street food sandwich. Her Ahi burger is Asian inspired, with garlic, chili pepper and fresh ginger infused ground tuna, seared and topped with Napa cabbage and Wasabi Aioli on an artisan whole-wheat roll. About 500 people attended the inaugural event — billed as the area's first burger competition. For $45, guests could sample all the burgers and beer they could handle from 10 area restaurants. With all resort restaurants open to the public, guests can dine at the Waterview for Gulfview fine dining, Sea Breeze Café featuring al fresco dining and The Pool & Beach Bar. For more information, visit sundialresort.com.
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