BACARDÍ brings Cuban spirit to life with graphic novel

‘The Spirit of BACARDÍ’ tells the incredible stories behind the Bacardí family who faced earthquakes, fire, revolution, prohibition, and exile – none of which could tame their irrepressible spirit.


BACARDÍ has released a graphic novel, The Spirit of Bacardi, to celebrate the iconic brand and its origins in Cuba.

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For 150 years BACARDÍ has been an incredible brand with amazing stories to tell.

Since 1862, the Bacardí family has faced earthquakes, fire, revolution, prohibition, and exile, none of which could tame their irrepressible spirit.

To bring these stories to life, BACARDÍ has collaborated with two of the most iconic names in the world of graphic novels – writer Warren Ellis and artist Michael Allred – to create The Spirit of BACARDÍ.

The graphic novel focuses on Emilio Bacardí – son of founder Don Facundo Bacardí Massó – and his tireless work for Cuban independence in the late 1800s.

Emilio Bacardí was repeatedly imprisoned and exiled for his belief in an independent Cuba, but persevered, eventually becoming the first freely-elected Mayor of Santiago de Cuba.

The Spirit of BACARDÍ novel also touches upon early challenges the Bacardí family faced and overcame – including an earthquake that destroyed their city and a fire that ravaged their distillery – and ends with the creation of the original Cuba Libre cocktail in 1900.

In true, bold BACARDÍ style, drops of BACARDÍ Gold Rum were added to the ink Michael Allred used to illustrate the novel.

Allred said: “Working on this project gave me the chance to bring to life a time and a place I’ve never worked with before – Cuba in the late nineteenth century.

“I loved the idea of adding BACARDÍ rum to the ink to make it a real part of the graphic novel’s DNA. It’s something I have never done before and makes the artwork unique.”

Ellis added: “Storytelling requires great characters, and in Emilio Bacardí we have exactly that. Emilio was a patriot, passionate about his homeland of Cuba. My focus was to bring his drive and determination to life.”

Andy Gibson, Chief Marketing Officer of Bacardi,  said: “We see The Spirit of BACARDÍ as a fantastic way to tell the stories behind “BACARDÍ Untameable Since 1862,” our new global marketing campaign that inspires consumers to pursue their passions no matter what—much like the Bacardí family did—encouraging camaraderie and strength of character.

“Authenticity is increasingly important to our consumers, especially millennials. While first and foremost we want the graphic novel to be entertaining, we are also saying something important about our brand; that we have the heritage to back up our attitude.”

In 1862, in the city of Santiago de Cuba, founder Don Facundo Bacardí Massó revolutionized the spirits industry when he created a light-bodied rum with a particularly smooth taste – BACARDÍ.

The unique taste of BACARDÍ rum inspired cocktail pioneers to invent some of the world’s most famous recipes including the BACARDÍ Mojito, the BACARDÍ Daiquirí, the BACARDÍ Cuba Libre, the BACARDÍ Piña Colada and the BACARDÍ Presidente.

BACARDÍ rum is the world’s most awarded spirit, with more than 550 awards for quality, taste and innovation. Today, BACARDÍ rum is made in Puerto Rico and Mexico where it is crafted to ensure the taste remains the same today as it did when it was first blended in 1862.

LIVE PASSIONATELY. DRINK RESPONSIBLY.

CHAPTER 8

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For the next chapter, click here.

Find the full story at The Spirit of BACARDÍ.