While there’s no indication that Jonah did any drinking while he was sitting in the belly of a whale for three days, the Biblical story has become tied up with the popular idea of swarthy sea dogs tipping back bottles of alcohol between rounds of pillaging and looting booty. Rum and pirates go together like Forrest and Jenny, so it isn’t surprising to find a brand of rum named “Jonah’s Curse.” In the Biblical story, Jonah wasn’t exactly cursed; he was punished by God for trying to flee to Tarshish instead of warning the Ninevites of their imminent destruction as he was commanded. That punishment involved sitting in the belly of a whale for three days until he repented.
The label of the bottle depicts a very large whale rising out of the water and towering over a ship with three masts. The whale could nearly swallow the ship in one gulp, which is a nod to the Biblical story. A whale would have to be very large for a person to live inside it for three days, after all. The rum is 47% alcohol per volume, so it is not for the faint-hearted, much like the task of walking into a major, populous city and announcing that God is going to smite them.
According to “Total Wine,” a sales website, the rum is “a rich, caramelized Caribbean run blended with 12 traditional spices. Vanilla, cinnamon and oaky notes on the nose – roasted pineapple, mangos and bananas on the palate.” The user “nezumitoo” on Instagram (also where I snagged the cropped portion of the above image) noted that Jonah’s Curse goes down smoother than The Kraken Black Spiced Rum and would be his first choice for any future purchases. The next time I pass by a liquor store, I will be stopping in to see if I can pick up a bottle myself.