There’s a rumble within the rum world. As soon as this spirit was routinely dismissed by individuals who ought to know higher as nothing greater than a tough booze with pirate associations, however having been tipped for giant issues in recent times, it lastly seems to be set to realize mass attraction.
Spiced rums, of which there at the moment are a whole lot, have helped open the market to the cocktail crowd and other people at the moment are discovering the large depth of types and flavours that conventional rums can supply. From aged sipping rums of the Caribbean and Latin America, to vibrant white rums that carry any cocktail, by means of to the distinctive grassy flavours of Rhum Agricoles and Navy rums loaded with flavour (and booze), it could possibly be argued that rum offers extra selection for drinkers than most different spirits.
And rum manufacturing isn’t simply confined to tropical places, with British producers arising everywhere in the nation, every hoping the spirit would be the subsequent gin. Whereas most of those outfits are serving up blends and spiced rums, there are a couple of distillers doing it from scratch, together with Manchester Nonetheless Inc, Scotland’s Sea Wolf and London’s Bimber Distillery, who’ve made a powerful white spirit that proudly boasts its “London Rum” credentials on the label.
There’s nonetheless a treasure trove filled with rums that commerce on salty sea canine tales of pirates and journey, however there are numerous extra progressive producers, like Bimber, who’ve forged these previous connotations apart within the hope of interesting to a extra trendy, discerning drinker.
That will help you select a couple of rums, we’ve examined the perfect of the previous and the brand new to convey you this record containing our favourites and, whether or not you’ve pirate aspirations or not, we reckon there’s lots right here you’ll take pleasure in.
Rums are listed in worth order.
Greatest: Mild rum for cocktails
Key specs – ABV: 40%; Quantity: 700ml; Nation: Cuba
That is an important merchandise for cocktail followers, not only for the contents however as a result of few merchandise look nearly as good on the shelf as Havana Membership’s basic label. The important thing to the spirit’s success is its easy perfection and affordability.
It has a light-weight contact with delicate notes of vanilla, oak and almonds, and the alcohol is crisp, relatively than harsh, making it a should for mojitos and nice in nearly some other rum-based cocktail you care to combine.
Greatest: All rounder
Key specs – ABV: 43%; Quantity: 700ml; Nation: Barbados
Should you’re trying to discover the world of rum and are eager to see the way it shapes up in cocktails or sipping neat, this discount bottle is a good way to start out. Handcrafted in Barbados since 1703 (making it the world’s oldest rum producer), it’s a mix of pot and column nonetheless spirits which were aged in charred bourbon barrels.
This oak and charcoal mixture lends a toasty heat to the vanilla and spice flavours, whereas dried fruits and a caramel sweetness add a wealthy and clean complexity that aids regular sipping. Do this for starters and also you’ll probably return to it repeatedly.
Greatest: Navy rum
Key specs – ABV: 57%; Quantity: 700ml; Nation: Guyana and Scotland
57 per cent is the magic quantity for navy rum, the power of alcohol that was allowed aboard British Navy ships and was known as 100 English proof (for an “overproof” rum take a look at Wray & Nephew’s white rum bottled at 63 per cent).
Regardless of being such a excessive alcohol booze, Wooden’s model is remarkably clean and may even be loved neat with out it shredding your insides. It incorporates a mix of Guyana demerara rums which might be aged in Scotland for no less than three years, and though it has some punchy booze and peppery oak flavours, it’s principally characterised by a brown sugar sweetness and darkish toffee mellowness.
Greatest: Flavoured rum
Key specs – ABV: 35%; Quantity: 700ml; Nation: Principally Guatemala
This class is as closely contested as spiced rums with producers hoping to seek out the subsequent massive factor by sticking virtually something into their booze. Of these examined, we have been most impressed with Diablesse Clementine Spiced rum (we might sniff the boozy orange-drop aroma all day); Plantation’s Pineapple rum, including a tropical fruit edge to a very good high quality dry rum; Ronmiel Aguere Classic Honey rum – candy and sickly but unusually interesting; and Spytail’s warming Ginger rum.
Our prime decide is a white rum blended with coconut water and toasted coconut, a a lot much less candy selection than most others and with a variety of nutty depth, doubtless because of the toasting. The rum itself is sweet sufficient to face out in cocktails, whereas the coconut additions will deliver their tropical flavours and aromas with out overpowering the remainder of the components.
£25.80, Grasp of Malt
Greatest: New rum
Key specs – Quantity: 40%; ABV: 700ml; Nation: Jamaica and England
Reduce’s overproof spiced rum, bottled at a whopping 75.5 per cent ABV, has been inflicting jaws to wag (and knees to wobble) with some rave critiques, however we’ve opted to point out off its equally adventurous smoked rum.
Utilizing a base of three-year-old Jamaican rum, the London producers have infused it with flavours from espresso beans and burnt wooden chips to create a brand new and thrilling spirit. The aroma is of candy espresso liqueur, which continues on sipping, earlier than delicate flavours of ash and tobacco start to take centre stage. A brown sugar and vanilla sweetness stays whilst some dryness kicks in, producing an uncommon spirit that’s best for drinks making experimenters on the lookout for their subsequent rum-based cocktail twist.
Greatest: Darkish rum for cocktails
Key specs – ABV: 40%; Quantity: 700ml; Nation: Bermuda
If you wish to make the basic rum and ginger beer cocktail, often known as a Darkish ‘n’ Stormy, then you definitely’ll need to pay money for a bottle of Black Seal as a result of makers Goslings has trademarked the Darkish ‘n’ Stormy identify.
However that is nobody trick rum – its wealthy treacly flavours can fire up a storm in an entire vary of drinks mixes. Aged in closely charred barrels, it’s filled with fruity depth with plums, figs and oranges all within the boozy mix, whereas cinnamon and spice helps it to earn the “Christmas cake” cliché.
This wonderful flavour-packed rum doesn’t merely rework cocktail drinkers to their Caribbean goals, it additionally makes a positive nip for those who’re setting out on a wintry journey to, or from, the pub.
£35.95, The Whisky Change
Greatest: Spiced rum
Key specs – ABV: 40%; Quantity: 700ml; Nation: England
There are such a lot of spiced rums available on the market that we assembled a particular weekend tasting group only for this class. We have been on the lookout for one thing that had a superb rum flavour at its core and featured a robust mix of spices – too many bottles relied closely on candy vanilla that masked the spirit it was flavouring (though if candy vanilla appeals, we will advocate Pirate’s Grog Spiced, a Honduran rum with extra complexity than most).
Of these we loved most, Aldi’s Sea Canine Black Spiced offered a superb mixture of rum and attractive espresso spices however our favorite was Devon’s Lugger.
Though it options some up entrance vanilla sweetness, the senses are shortly engulfed by vigorous spices, crackling with pepper and cloves, however they nonetheless permit respectable rum flavours to shine by way of, even when plunged right into a glass of ginger beer for our favorite spicy cocktail mixture.
£39.45, The Whisky Trade
Greatest: Sipping rum
Key specs – ABV: 40%; Quantity: 700ml; Nation: Guyana
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Very similar to whisky, with regards to sipping rums each fan has their concept on what makes an ideal spirit and can argue endlessly over the deserves of their favorite. El Dorado rums will function in a number of these arguments as a result of it’s the best choice of many, together with judges at quite a few worldwide rum awards.
For us, what makes its 12 yr previous so particular is its smoothness, with complicated flavours that absorb candy caramel (an excessive amount of for some), vanilla, oak and spices, with some darkish fruit richness and delicate charred notes. There’s a lot happening that each one you must add is ice.
£44.33, Grasp of Malt
Greatest: Rhum Agricole
Key specs – ABV: 40%; Quantity: 700ml; Nation: Mauritius
Rhum Agricoles are somewhat totally different to different rums. Distilled from sugarcane juice, it’s stated that, very similar to wine, the terroir can affect the top product excess of different sugar sources, leading to a variety of distinctive flavours.
This restricted version bottle is a mix of pot nonetheless rums which were aged between three and 7 years in American and French oak barrels, giving it a deep golden color and a few softly warming gingery spice.
The aroma has a dusting of chocolate powder, which additionally sweetens up the flavour. Following a medley of fruity and citrussy notes, the distinctive recent grassy flavour of agricoles slowly emerges to the end.
Greatest: Solera rum
Key specs – ABV: 40%; Quantity: 700ml; Nation: Venezuela
Solera is a technique of steady ageing and mixing liquids to supply a constant, completed product that’s generally used for sherry and balsamic vinegar. It’s not that always a function of rum manufacturing so Venezuela’s Santa Teresa 1796 is a uncommon deal with, simply sneaking beneath our £50 threshold at some retailers.
The rums are aged between 5 and 35 years and it’s tremendous clean, with nutty oak spices mingling with candy orchard fruits, and it has a gently warming dry end. A superb solera sipper.