Top sipping rums tasted

Rum, Rhum, Ron. Talk about your favorite sugarcane spirits in this rum forum.

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JaRiMi
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Mon Jan 05, 2009 7:26 pm

Which rums have you really enjoyed? And I do mean as themselves, not in a cocktail. I would be curious to hear other opinions. Doesn't matter if the rum is an obtainable one or not, rare or not.

I can start listing here some of my current & past favorites, not in any particular order (because the order may vary from time to time).

- Angostura 1824 12yo
Not the easiest rum in the world, I was stunned when I first tasted this at Angostura office in Laventille, Trinidad. Complex as hell, oily (hint of engine oil?) and robust, but also a beautifully layered rum which opens up slowly on your palate, exposing vanilla, dried orange peel, spices (nutmeg?) and warmth. Sturdy enough to make a good cigar rum, I have no idea how much this has varied in flavour from batch to batch. I think this beats the crap out of the 1919 rum, but I know many like the younger broter's vanilla-sweetness.

- El Dorado 21yo
Fabulously rich, rum-raisiny taste caresses the palate! Dry and slightly oaky but hey - it must be if the age statement is even close to true..! Fruity and rich, leathery - simply beautiful. Mainstream Demerara doesn't get better. I like the slight dryness in this very much.

- El Dorado 15yo
The very first El Dorado product I have ever tasted, and I have loved it since. Sweeter than the previous, slightly spicy but uber-rich flavours, brandy, raisins, plums..etc etc. Roasted sugar notes remind one of this drink's cane origin. I have never met any rum drinker who would have completely not liked this one.

Appleton 21yo

For me, the ultimate Appleton experience, and the only one in their standard line-up that I can truly say I love. (The younger Appleton's have a pungency and slight burned flavour that does not sit well with my palate.) Very dry and oaky, but oh so silky smooth and beautifully deep taste! Like drinking liquid mahogany mixed with cognac. Astounding.

Tanduay Centennial Rhum

Single barrels selected at age of 23 (some quotes say 24 - 26 years old) and bottled in 1-litre bottles to commemorate 100 years of Philippines independence. Rich, not as robust as the previously mentioned ones but with excellent finesse, marmelade, cedarwood notes that combine with orange peel and citrus, some clove? Bears some similarity to the Cockspur 12, but also to some Hispanic style rums in its roasted sugary notes.

Tanduay 18yo Barrel Rhum
Another winner from Tanduay, a super-smooth and silky medium-bodied rum. Touch of smoke, raisins, oaky - like a well-balanced ex-sherry barrel whisky. Lovely and quite different from the previous.

Santa Teresa 1796 Antiguo de Solera, 15yo
Very lovely and brandy-like, more sugary Hispanic style rum from Venezuela. Between this and Pampero Anniversario, I would probably take this. Easy drinking also, ensy to enjoy.

Mount Gay Extra Old

A very fine representative of the Bajan style of rums, this dry but easy-drinking rum is one of the most balanced products on the market. I do like the bajan style rums so!!

Doorly's XO

It's been quite a while since I had this one, not so easy to find these days. Another great rum from Barbados, the ex-sherry barrel maturation has added a richness to the flavours. Very good indeed.

Barbancourt 15yo
By far the best rum made directly from cane juice in agricole-style that I have found (most tend to be a bit bitter and have a sharply alcoholic note in flavour to my palate). Smooth and the only rum I could really describe as creamy in taste! Amazing stuff indeed. Again, a unique taste and personality.

Rockley Still 16yo (finished in ex-fino sherry casks), Bristol Spirits
The most difficult by far out of the rums on this list, but so distictly different! Wax, pine sap, smoke. Amazing!!! Not your every-day tipple, but definitely worth a try. Anyone who thinks rums are bit one-note in flavour should try this.

English Harbour Extra Old
One of the most dry rums I have come across, this is a stunner in its own right. Oaky notes make it even a touch bitter, but the rum seems very old and leathery, warming. Very well balanced, many whisky lovers have found this truly outstanding - as have I. Hard to find these days.

Special Old Cask 10yo, Caroni 1975 Ltd.
To me this holds a special place in my heart as it reminds me always of how Trinidad rums used to taste in the 80's. Light and beautiful, really easy to sip and enjoy, light-bodied as ever.

Ron Varadero 15yo
I do enjoy this dry and tasty older Cuban rum, far far better than say the sugary nonsense we call Havana Club 7 anos. very reasonably priced also. Somewhat atypical for a Hispanic rum, dry and slightly woody also, but medium-bodied.

JaRiMi
Posts: 152
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2008 7:23 pm
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Mon Jan 05, 2009 7:41 pm

Oops, I could have added to that the Pussers 15yo Navy rum, in its own right a fabulous product.

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Dood
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Mon Jan 05, 2009 8:33 pm

I see nothing wrong with that list. I'd probably add a few:

Clement XO
Rhum JM VSOP
Oronoco

Those are the three that spring to mind. On any given day though other rums can join the list.

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Count Silvio
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Tue Jan 06, 2009 5:23 pm

At this moment my top sipping rums consist of these though I may add more to this thread later:

El Dorado 15

I like this because it never lets me down, because it is amazingly robust, because you can drink it at any given moment.

Appleton Estate Extra

One of my favorites, can't say I can find much burned flavour that would bother me. A solid sipping rum from a solid series.

Cruzan Single Barrel

This is another rum I like very much, it is easy to drink and while not overly complicated its comforting flavours will satisfy me at most times.

Angostura 1824

Like J, I prefer this one much to the 1919. Not a rum I often get the chance to enjoy due to the expensive price at the liquor shop and the bars but nevertheless a rum I've grown to love whenever I've tasted it.

J Wray & Nephew Overproof 17 Year Old

Absolutely sublime overproof rum. Exquisite flavours and unfortunately very unavailable to the public. Apparently this rum made the perfect Mai-Tai but I would drink this stuff neat.

I hope they find a stash of this rum hidden somewhere in the Wray and Nephew cellars and send one my way. Would love to write decent tasting notes of this rum, may be wishful thinking as this is an extremely rare rum. Don't know if I ever get to try it again.
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Count Silvio
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Fri Jan 09, 2009 11:00 pm

I'm going to add Tanduay 18yo Barrel Rhum to this list.
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