The Rum Howler Blog

(A Website for Spirited Reviews)

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Contact Me

How to Contact The Rum Howler to have your Spirit Reviewed!

If you are a member of the spirits industry, and wish to see your spirit reviewed on the Rum Howler Blog, then here is where you should make your initial contact. My email address for such inquiries is:


Please leave a short message regarding your inquiry. If you wish your contact request to be kept confidential, please indicate this in your email. Although I am located in Canada, I have made appropriate arrangements to receive samples from the US and abroad.

Please read my Sample Policy found here (Sample Policy) before making contact.

I also provide specialized consulting services to spirit producers and distributors to help assess the quality of their products. My fees for this sort of service are very reasonable (at least I think so), and you may use the above email address to contact me in confidence about such matters.

(Please Note: The email address indicated above is for industry contacts only. I will not respond to other inquiries. If you have questions or comments regarding my reviews, my recipes, or other matters relating to the blog then please use the comments section provided at the end of each article I publish.)


Republishing My Work

Copyright is inherent when an original work is created. This means that the producer of original work is automatically granted copyright protection. This copyright protection not only exists in North America, but extends to other countries as well. This means that all of the work produced on this blog is protected by copyright, including all of the pictures and all of the articles. These original works may not be copied or reused in any way whatsoever without the permission of the author, Chip Dykstra.

If you are a producer, advertiser or publisher and wish to use, or republish any of the materials or pictures on this website (in full or in part) or have myself submit new material to you for publication, please be advised that all of my articles/reviews/photographs are my intellectual property. Please contact me using the email address above. And yes, I expect to be compensated for such use.


About Me

I have been writing reviews of distilled spirits for about 7 years now. It began when I posted a few mad ramblings on the Ministry of Rum which gave my views on a few of the more popular Rum Brands. Soon after those ramblings were published, I was contacted by the owner of a website called Rum Connection. He was wondering if I would be interested in writing a few reviews for his website. I decided to give it a try, and the result was my first published review. The folks at Rum Connection apparently liked what I wrote, and during the next year I published about 15 reviews for them.

Reviewing rum was so much fun that I decided to create my website, but not just for Rum. I made the decision that I would discuss all distilled spirits, and when I opened this website in October of 2009, I made sure I added a few Whisky Reviews, some Gin Reviews and a couple Tequila Reviews such that most of the major distilled spirit categories were represented. (Since opening the website, I have expanded the range to also include Vodka Reviews, Liqueurs, Port and Dessert Wines, Brandy and Cognac.) Although my focus is primarily upon Rum and Whisky, it is my belief that acquiring knowledge and skill with respect to all spirits serves to broaden my perspective and is beneficial to my over-all understanding of distilled spirits.

For what it is worth, people (and industry) seem to like what I write. Since opening the website, I have  been asked four times to act as a Spirits Judge for the annual Canadian Whisky Awards; as well I have twice been asked to join the international panel of judges for the International RumXP Competition at Rum Renaissance in Miami. Having said that, I think it would be true to state that the reviews on this website represents more of a knowledgeable layman’s perspective than that of a professional taster.

I hope you enjoy the reviews on my website and find value in them; but always remember that an opinion is just that, an opinion. Do not take my writing too seriously, for opinions vary and in the end, only you can really decide if a spirit gives you enjoyment. Use my reviews as a guide, but trust your own tastes and preferences as well.


Note: I sometimes receive comments and messages from persons who wish me to comment on the value of bottles of whisky and rum that they have in their possession. And from persons who wish to use my blog as a means to sell such bottles. Although I thank you for reading my blog, I cannot help you in these matters. My suggestion for you is to visit or the Ministry of Rum where it appears help in these matters may be  provided.


445 Responses to “Contact Me”

  1. Norma said

    Chip, I am doing a scotch tasting presentation next week at our little scotch club and was looking for tasting notes and reviews on some products when I came across your blog. I like your ratings scale and would like to refer to it and quote some of your opinions in my presentation. (Eg. DeVine’s Ancient Grains Cask Strength) There are few tasting notes available on this product and while you it is just an opinion and we should all trust our own judgement, at least you have tasted it and as yet I haven’t. Is this good with you that I refer to your comments on the blog? No publication, just referencing.

    • Hi Norma

      Sorry It took so long to reply. I have been very busy with other pressing matters. I hope you tasting went well, and in the future feel free to refer to my tasting notes if they help you! Cheers!

  2. Dave King said

    Haven’t received any reviews since last Aug/22, so I was wondering if you are still doing them? Hope you are and all’s well. Dave King

    • Hi Dave

      Yeah its been a while since my last published reviews. Let’s just say that life has been happening, mostly in a good way. I just started up my tasting group again and we should be tasting and I should be publishing reviews again soon.

  3. Nikolas said

    Hello I read your review on the alberta distillers 25 year old from 2006 and wondering how hard it is to find a bottle these days and if it’s at the same price point thank you Nikolas.

  4. Mean Dean said

    Chip! Great to see you’re back in the saddle again! I was wondering if you had any personal favorites/recommendations for a good cocktail rye. When a recipe like a Manhattan calls for a rye like Sazerac or Rittenhouse over bourbon, which Canadian or US rye whiskies would you recommend? Cheers!

  5. Alex said

    Hi Chip! Great blog. I’ve found it very helpful on my spirits journey of the past few years.

    I’m getting into Cognac and Armangac these days, but I am price conscious. So I liked your reviews of non-“ngac” French brandies St. Remy VSOP and XO, and was pleasantly surprised by your high score for the XO relative to its cheap price.

    I just saw that they released a new offering a year or two ago…St. Remy Signature. I’d love to know what you think of that one and especially how it compares to the XO.

    It’s a few dollars more, I think because it is new and matured in two different types of oak casks. But I can’t figure out whether it’s meant to be more premium than the XO or not. And I can’t tell how long it’s been aged. But most importantly, I’m wondering how the Rum Howler would describe the taste! If I could only buy one, should it be the XO or the Signature?

    Anyway, just a thought! Your blog rocks!

  6. Have you tasted it

  7. gtt55 said

    Hello Chip…Are you doing alright? I have followed your blog for years and am very concerned about your lack of posting. Hope everything is OK. For we don’t give a damn for any old man who don’t give a damn for us…

  8. David said

    My sentiments are perfectly echoed by Alex’s post (January 14, 2021). I often refer to your writing as a very reliable and stable reference when trying to choose a rum, and have very much enjoyed reading your reviews over the years. Like Alex I too live in Quebec and am also challenged by a rather limited supply of sipping rums (read jealous of the variety you enjoy!). I’m writing you first to thank you for this opus you have created from your passion, and also to ask you a question. For years I’ve been interested in forming a rum tasting club, or at least gather fellow rum tasters. I live in Montreal. Would you have any contacts or leads or ideas of how I could connect with other rum lovers here?

    Thanks so much!

  9. DonnaB said

    Thanks for everything you do. Yours are practically the only revews I will go to and use as a guide for new purchases. I appreciate the depth and breadth of your tasting and assessment.

    If possible, I hope you can do a review of the Black Fox Mustard Gin. Odd concept but thinking it may have some merit due to the spice of mustard.

  10. Jeffrey K said

    Great reviews Chip. Any plans to do Canadian Club 100% Rye?

  11. Mike W said

    Great to read your reviews and try new rums! I’ve never been disappointed with buying a new rum based solely on your scores! Thank you for that.

    Wondering if you know what is happening with Appleton Estate? I no longer see any of their 15yr or older rums, and the price of the 12yr has shot up drastically in the last couple years. Their website only shows the signature, 8yr and 12yr.

  12. Bill Beard said

    I am a devoted admirer of your blog, and am constantly poking around in it. I am wondering if you have any plans to review the Highwood “Liberator” line of spirits that have shown up in Alberta liquor stores. There is a rye (which I like), and also a gin and a vodka.

  13. Alex said

    I really enjoy your reviews and your site is a great resource. It seems like Alberta is much better than many other Canadian provinces for buying spirits, and with a greater variety. I lived in Ontario before, and I live in Quebec now. Buying spirits in Ontario was terrible. Quebec is a little better but very difficult to find good rums in both Provinces. Looking forward to more reviews. Take Care.

  14. Stefan schulhof said

    Have you noticed any difference between the old label Appleton rum and the new label

  15. Jeff Hardy said

    Just wondering if you update your Reviews Lists for the spirits that you rate. Thanks

  16. Pat said

    Just curious, Are you still active with this blog? Seems like nothing new in the last several years. I enjoy this blog and based many of my purchase from your reviews. Keep up the good work.

  17. Martijn Van de Weerd said

    Thank you for your comprehensive work. Im just starting to explore the world of Rum, but this is very helpful.

    Is there anywhere a rating (your ratings) vs price guide available? I know prices differ from location to location, but it would interested to see what is the best value for money.

    Thanks in advance, have a good day!

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