The Petroleum Club hosted Bayou Rum for a tasting party and spirits seminar. The handcrafted, hyper-local rum comes from Lacassine and uses only Louisiana cane. “We’re hoping to be the national brand,” said Bayou spokesman Skip Cortese. “We support local sugar cane farmers and they get a boost as well.” Bayou is a new distillery that’s been around for about a year and produces both silver and aromatic spiced rum. In addition to fermentations, syrups and sugars, distiller Jeff Murphy taught everyone the expert way to taste spirits — exhale when you swallow, it decreases the burn. Letting those Bayou Breezes blow were Sharon Yeomans, Leslie and Minor Domangue, Mella and Raoul Viera, who knows good rum when he sees it, Jerry Brice, Jysele Jones, Danny Jones and Bayou ladies Lisa Cortese and Stacy Murphy. What we loved: That it’s American-made, Louisiana strong, and only 66 calories an ounce.

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Patricia Gannon covers society for The Acadiana Advocate. She can be reached at or at