The Florida island of Key West is to get its first legal rum distillery, according to local reports. 

The company, Chef Distilled, is being set-up by chef and professional kiteboarder Paul Menta, the Miami Herald reported. The firm's premises is a 2,500 square-foot warehouse, belived to be one of the Coca-Cola Co’s earliest bottling plants. 

The labels on Chef Distilled's main product, Legal Rum, will carry mug shots of people arrested in Key West for bootlegging during Prohibition, the paper reported. “We want to use everything local, so why not local criminals?” Menta was quoted as saying.

Menta, who has a Facebook page for the company, and his partners are believed to have invested around US$300,000 in the business so far. 

Legal Rum will be distributed throughout Keys West initially, then rolled out to South Florida. A bottle is expected to cost around $21 in stores. 

A new law was passed in Florida in June allowing craft distillers to sell direct to the public. However the new law says consumers can only buy a maximum of two bottles a year. 

For insight into the US' booming craft distilling scene, click here

Expert analysis

Global Beer Tax Tables, 2012

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