Museo de Ron
The Fundación Destilería Havana Club, or Museo de Ron (Museum of Rum, Av. San Pedro #262, e/ Muralla y Sol, tel. 07/861-8051, www.havana club.com, Mon.–Thurs. 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Fri.–Sun. 9 a.m.–4 p.m., CUC7 including guide and drink), two blocks south of Plaza de San Francisco, occupies the former harborfront colonial mansion of the Conde de la Mortera. It’s a must-see and provides an introduction to the mystery and manufacture of Cuban rum.
Your tour begins with an audiovisual presentation. Exhibits include a mini-cooperage, pailes (sugar boiling pots), original wooden trapiches (sugarcane presses), and salas dedicated to an exposition on sugarcane, and to the colonial sugar mills and factories where the cane was pressed and the liquid processed. An operating mini-production unit replete with bubbling vats and copper stills demonstrates the process that results in some of the world’s finest rums.
The highlight is a model of an early 20th-century sugar plantation at 1:22.5 scale, complete with working steam locomotives. Your tour ends in the Bar Havana Club.
Hemingway once favored Dos Hermanos (Av. San Pedro #304, esq. Sol, tel. 07/861-3514), a simple bar immediately south of the museum. It was closed for renovation at the time of publication
© Christopher P. Baker from Moon Cuba, 5th Edition