The Fernandez family didn't exactly mean to start selling rum. They've been living on their estate in Puerto Rico since it was deeded to their family by the Spanish Crown in 1797 (talk about a fancy pedigree!). They grew sugarcane, so, of course, they made rum. They were pretty good at it, but they made it only for their own enjoyment, to share with family and guests.
Then, the patriarch's great grand-son, Pedro Fernendez went to university to study engineering in Paris and fell in love with Cognac. He brought back Cognac rectifying equipment to process rum like the aged brandy he adored. This special process led to name “Ron del Barrilito” which means “rum from the little barrel”. Fernandez decided that the family rum was simply too good not to sell.
The family still uses the same equipment before aging their rum in French wine barrels, all on the remaining part of the family estate. Their office is in a windmill which used to generate power for the distilling process. The business is now run by Fernando and Manuel Fernandez with a small staff that does most of the work by hand.