Captain Morgan is bringing back this seasonal favorite

How do you plan to celebrate Halloween this year? Are you going to go out and party like it's 1349? Yeah, if you want to know how well partying in plague times works out, you might want to check out a fun little story called "The Masque of the Red Death" by the ever-cheerful Edgar Allan Poe. Or, if you're more of a movie person, there's always the bundle-of-laughs Roger Corman-directed version. The top comment on YouTube dates from last March: "This is the earliest I've ever decided on my Halloween costume."

Whether you decide to go out (perhaps garbed as a plague doctor) or stay inside where it's safe as long as you don't admit any mysterious strangers (be they vampires or trick-or-treaters), you might want to celebrate — or medicate — with an adult beverage. Well, if you want something appropriately seasonal that also doubles as a Halloween decoration, you couldn't do better than Captain Morgan's seasonal favorite, Jack-O'Blast.

Yes, it's pumpkin spice rum

The most noticeable thing about Jack-O'Blast is its bottle, which, according to the press release announcing its 2016 debut (via PR Newswire), "simulates the look of a carved pumpkin when illuminated under a black light." It's flavored with pumpkin and cinnamon and "other autumnal spices," and it's good stuff, too. Drizly users gave it an average 4.9 rating (nothing but 4 and 5-star reviews), and some of the comments on that site include: "Perfect taste! Very smooth!," "ABSOLUTELY the best rum I have ever tasted!!!," "literally the best rum flavor EVER!!," and "You can't beat the spice flavor and it's very affordable." (Drizly lists the price as $16.99 for a 750-millileter bottle, which puts it in the mid-price range for non-rotgut rums.)

One thing many of the comments brought up was the fact that this rum is only available seasonally, with regrets being expressed that it's not available year-round. As to its window of availability, that most likely depends on your liquor store — they bought what they bought, and they'll sell out when it's gone, so if nobody likes it, it could be on the shelves 'til Easter. Since it does seem to be pretty popular, though, you're better off picking these pumpkins sooner rather than later.

Jack-O'Blast makes a great mixer

While this rum is tasty enough to drink straight, it also goes well with fall-themed cocktails. The original press release includes one recipe for a drink they call the Apple Jack-O. This drink couldn't be simpler: just add 1.5 ounces of pumpkin rum to 4 ounces of chilled cider, throw in a few ice cubes, and let the autumnal imbibing begin. (The recipe seems to call for sweet cider, but you could always use a hard cider such as Angry Orchard for a higher-octane version.)

If you're a fan of more complex cocktails, Joe's Daily lists several more recipes from Captain Morgan. The Captain's Cauldron involves mixing 1.5 ounces of Jack O'Blast with 2 ounces of orange juice, 1 ounce of cranberry juice, and an optional splash of club soda and then serving it over ice with a lemon wedge. The Mutiny Mule is a simple twist on the classic Moscow version, mixing 1.5 ounces of the pumpkin rum with 3 ounces of ginger beer and half an ounce of lime juice. The Rum Howler Blog takes this recipe and tweaks it a bit to make it more pumpkin-forward and less gingery. Their version calls for 2 ounces of the rum, 3/8 an ounce of fresh lime juice (that's 2 ¼ teaspoons), a dash of simple syrup, and 2 ounces of ginger ale.

You can even use it for a party punch

If you are planning that (hopefully very small and socially distanced) party, Captain Morgan suggests serving their Smashed Pumpkin punch (via Facebook). 

To make this punch, you'll need their original spiced rum as well as the Jack-O'Blast. Take 10 ounces of each rum and combine them with 1.5 ounces of aromatic bitters, 10 ounces of apple juice, 10 ounces of fresh-squeezed lemon juice, 10 ounces of fresh-squeezed orange juice, and 10 ounces of pumpkin puree. Stir until all the ingredients are combined and then pour them into a Halloween-themed punch bowl or, better yet, a hollowed-out pumpkin of sufficient size. Add ice and then top the punch off with 20 ounces of ginger beer. Serve each individual cocktail garnished with cinnamon and leaves of fresh sage.

Plus it goes great in coffee

Another two-rum cocktail, also courtesy of the Captain, is the cold-brew based Pumpkin Spiced Shotte (via Facebook). This one's a simple, single-serving drink. All you do is mix one ounce of Jack-O'Blast with one ounce of Captain Morgan's coconut-flavored LocoNut and half an ounce of cold brew coffee and then top it all off with lots and lots of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

And, of course, you can always make the Shotte with a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew (either Starbucks' version or this homemade copycat one) or else just spike your Pumpkin Spice Latte for double the pumpkin-y goodness. Yummy! Thank you, Captain, you may have just saved Halloween (at least for the grown-ups).