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Thread: Rum Forum

  1. #441
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    Re: Rum Forum

    Ha. Well, a dialogue clearly did not develop here

    Since my last post, I gave another shot to one of the lower end Flor De Canas (7yr or something) - still don't like what is to me a bitter and empty profile. I can see it's lack of sweetness playing out well in mixing, which I had not considered before.

    I have found more dusty Pusser's. Seems not to be that much of a challenge. I'll buy any that I see though - the stuff is delicious. And 94.5 proof, as opposed to the 92 proof of today.

    Also tried a Myer's 10yr aged anniversary release from the past. A nice dark rum, but still a dark rum, not really suitable for sipping. Also had a bit of a nasty bite to it which I'm not sure isn't the beginnings of bottle taint or just a characteristic of the aging. Hard to know without any frame of reference.

    tbt

  2. #442
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    Re: Rum Forum

    Quote Originally Posted by The Black Tot View Post
    I was a rum expert before I started my quest to be a bourbon expert.

    Thought I'd post some of my findings, for your consideration.

    I was an early adopter of Zacapa 23, and eventually the XO. Hard to go wrong with these.

    Over time and the development of my palate, I have gravitated towards the Demarara rums.

    Notably, El Dorado 21 is just fantastic, and has that great Demarara burnt molasses style that I got into.

    My favorite recent find has been a dusty Pusser's rum from 1994. This is a TOTALLY different animal from current production Pusser's, which is a bit irritating, since Pusser's is sold under the idea of the continuance of a traditional recipe. The bottles I have found can be recognized not only by a weird block logo (I've attached a photo), but also by lettering in the bottom of the bottle that states "Tortola, British Virgin Islands" on it.

    This old Pusser's is a musty, earthy, smokey, molasses-soaked complexity bomb that just screams "sailor". Which is cool, since I work at sea. The new one is flat and one-dimensional compared to it, with a more chemical sweetness.

    I tried the Smith And Cross mentioned above, but gave my bottle away last week. For me, it was too bitter. Although I agree this can be used well in cocktails where the sweetness comes from somewhere else.

    I have found that the best rums for mixing are the non-sweet rums - the rums that have more of an empty, spicy taste to them. Since most rum cocktails are mixed with other elements that have sweetness to them already, I find that sweet rums stack sweet on sweet and end up cloying. My current fave for mixing is Vizcaya rum, which lets the sweetness of the mix come through umolested, and adds the rum spices at the top end of the spectrum.

    If ever I find a rum that doesn't have much sweetness, I designate it a good potential mixer.

    My dark rum of choice is Coruba, which came from a recommendation by Rumdood, whose original Hurricane recipe is a favorite around our house. I have found a lot of dusty Coruba around town looking for bourbon, but have done a taste-off and can't discern a taste difference - the new version costs less, and is therefore the better deal, although the old label admittedly looks more fun in a kitschy way.

    I also use Lemon Hart 151 to spice things up if that is called for.

    The best value rum I have found was the Plantation 20th anniversary, which tasted like buttered caramel and could be drank all day long for $20/bottle. When that isn't available, I like the Atlantico Gran Reserva, the Diplomatico Gran Rerserva and Pampero are also great value for that buttery Venezuela thing. Cacique 500 is also elegant in this vein, if you can manage to get some (difficult in the US, but available easily abroad).

    I haven't yet seen the appeal of Flor De Cana, although they have released some new stuff since I gave up on the brand.

    Dogs I have tried have been Matsulem, Sea Wind, Zaya (vanilla overload), and many others that I have been fortunate enough to forget.

    Well, that ought to be enough to start a dialogue...

    tbt
    May have missed this when it was originally posted. I don't claim to be an expert in anything. I only know what I enjoy and what I don't!

    For what ever reason I find Zacapa to be more cloying than the El Dorado line, even though both have lots of added sugar, so I tend to stick with ED as a primary sipper.

    I tend to give Pusser's the cold shoulder because of the whole Painkiller issue. Don't think a company should be able to "buy" a drink name and demand exclusivity, especially when they didn't create it to begin with, despite the protestations from Pusser's. I have a somewhat similar feeling towards Goslings and the Dark & Stormy.

    I agree with the broader notion that drier rums tend to be better for mixing unless you want a sugar overload or are making a drink without another source of sweetness although there are many drier rums I like just fine as a sipper, with some of the rhum agricoles near the top of my list. Smith & Cross is one of my favorite mixers but not one I would routinely choose as a sipper.

    I like the Plantation line as well (one of my favorites being the Plantation Guadeloupe 1998) and the 20th Anniversary is a very nice option but again towards the sweeter end. They only shortcoming is a lack of proof except for the Plantation Dark overproof. Some of the Bajan rums from Barbados like Mount Gay and Seale's or the more whiskey like Jamaican rums like Appleton are also nice options. The Venezuelan rums are OK but also fairly sweet thanks to added sugar in my opinion, contrary to what the distilleries might claim. Indeed any claim made about rum has to be taken with a huge grain of sugar since there is so little regulation and even less oversight.

    In addition to the usual suspects like most Bacardi rums a real dog for me is the Pyrat rums. Nothing but sugary sweet, orange flavored blandness.

    In the rum world there probably too many dogs to mention me so it pays to experiment and find what you like, especially when seeking out a sipping rum.
    That yella whiskey runnin' down my throat like honey dew vine water and I took another slash…

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  3. #443
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    Re: Rum Forum

    Hmm.

    I know I replied to this. But a lot of my posts seem to be disappearing of late. I seem to be stuck at 222 posts, despite posting at least 5 times a day.

    I don't THINK I'm being controversial.

    short recapitulation:

    -I seem to like my rums a touch sweeter than you do, which is cool.
    -I have little to no respect for the modern incarnation of the Pusser's company either, and didn't know about the painkiller patent, lol.
    -I still will be loving my Pusser's dusties. Pusser's doesn't make me think of Pusser's Inc, it makes me think of naval history and the Caribbean.
    -Agree Pyrat is a dog.

    tbt

  4. #444
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    Re: Rum Forum

    Got inspired by a rum discussion on another thread and picked up a few new rums this weekend.

    DUNY order Aug 14.jpg

    The two Samaroli's are rums acquired in the Caribbean but aged in Scotland. The 1995 Demara is a 16yo single still product from the Versailles single wooden pot still but hasn't been colored and gussied up with sugar like the El Dorado's are. Overly pricey but what the hell. The Caribbean 2003 rum is in fact traveling incognito because it is 7-8yo Cuban rum (In Europe the label says Cuba 2003)

    Caribbean rum 2003 1.jpgCaribbean rum 2003 2.jpg

    And finally, a bottle of the Neisson Reserve Speciale which is a blend of rhum agricoles up to 10 years old.
    That yella whiskey runnin' down my throat like honey dew vine water and I took another slash…

    Nullum Gratuitum Prandium
    Ne Illegitimi Carborundum

  5. #445
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    Re: Rum Forum

    VERY cool, Tanstaafl2.

    I have had an awakening earlier this week and have learned more about additives, etc.

    My first dip in a much larger pond, that it seems you're already in. Cheers!

  6. #446
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    Re: Rum Forum

    Hmm.. a RUM dusty question from me:

    I just picked up some early 80's tax strip Myers "Golden Rich" Jamaican rum and a Bacardi 151 (ca 1989?) that has a pink cap and label. Not sure about them yet. I bought the 151 because it was $15, not for sipping. The store with the Bacardi also had Bacardi Gold Reserve, and some old Bacardi black/dark (maybe Superior??). The Myers store also had white Myers rum.

    I'm sort of "meh" on Bacardi in general, so I'm really in the dark about these older ones. I inherited some old, old 60's Bacardi bottles and they were really bad, but they had been open so I'm not judging too much.

    And yes, I did find a reference in this thread to the Gold Reserve, but there wasn't a lot of info on whether it was worth it. I think the guy will deal. Maybe $15 a bottle? Maybe less..

    I cracked open the Myers and I may just be "meh" about it also. It has some sort of funky taste to it, and I'm not sure if it's the rum or the 30 years on the shelf. Maybe I'll give it a day. It's also not super complex either. For $15 I can get Evan Williams BIB!

    Can any of the rum guys share their opinions? I hate to post this in the bourbon dusty thread!

    Much obliged.
    Last edited by bmajazz; 08-31-2014 at 23:49.

  7. #447
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    Re: Rum Forum

    I have mixed experience with older rums.

    Never tried the two you have. I'd say any overproof major label product at 151 ought to still "work", in the sense that at that ABV, I don't think it has much chance of being tainted.

    I've got a Myer's Legend bottle that I'm not sure if it's off or not, since I've never tasted a new one. Same as you with the Myer's Golden Rich (great name, I'd have tried it, too).

    But hey, if it sucks, then thanks for letting us know. I'll steer clear!

    Most of the older rums I've bought to experiment with have been more boring than offensive, which is fine - they'll still go in a cocktail.

  8. #448
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    Re: Rum Forum

    My pick of the Bacardi line is the current 8 year old. I have a dim recollection of Bacardi Gold Reserve but not enough to make meaningful comments. Do recall the girl I bought it for though.

    I don't think those dusty rums have gone off (absent being corked), rather the funk was probably there from the beginning which is the nature of the beast. Overall I think rums are much more consistent now than in years past.
    We're Bourbon Geeks, it's who we are, it's what we do.

  9. #449
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    Re: Rum Forum

    Critically sipping Rum is a relatively new phenomina in the USA. Rum has typically been thought of as a mixer or a cocktail ingredient. Your best bet at finding really interesting dusty Rums is in the European market. Agricoles and Demeraras are the most likely prospects.

    As far as dusty Bacardi products, there are two that are worth seeking out but probably neither is worth spending much money on, so skip the secondary market but pick up shelf versions if you find them. Bacardi Black is the most likely find - it has a briliant red triangle in the lower left of a black label with the Bacardi Bat logo in it. It will hold it's own with a lot of rums and is an interesting, if not terribly complex, sipper. They can be found for around $12 to $15 if they haven't been re-priced. The other one is much more obscure but is the best sipper Bacardi bottled until the new ultra premiums were released. Ron Casa Bacardi comes in a decanter style bottle and I have been told it was only available in military PX's and at the gift shop in the distillery. The label is all in spanish so it obviously has never been imported.
    Both are interesting but neither are so good you will lament their passing.

  10. #450
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    Re: Rum Forum

    I have been enjoying the Clement line of rhum agricole in a "critical" manner lately. After discovering the Barrel Select at Tales of the Cocktail, I picked up the 6 and 10 year. I have to adjust my expectations when sipping them, as it's so different from whiskey, and I should not taste for things that only whiskey can deliver. However, it's a nice change of pace, and has deepened my interest in the category.

 

 

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