Rum Ranking

As time goes on and I review rums I will list them here, placing them into 4 categories and ranking them within each category in order of how I like them.

As when reviewing, rums will get placed on this list after considering Sweetness, Complexity, Smoothness, Flavor Quality, and Overall Quality. Though I always talk about Value when reviewing the rums I will try not to take this into account on this list, as it will be easy for you to compare the prices. (Prices listed are what I would normally pay, not the actual price which may have been a closeout or something.)

For the categories – 3 are self-explanatory. The “On The Edge” category really requires that you enjoy rum and have read the article. I liked them enough not to trash them, but I understand that these may take some special consideration.

Initially I will place the newly reviewed rum some place in the list – this means going by memory, which is a rotten way to do it. So when time and alcohol consumption allow I will then quickly compare those rums close in the list and rearrange them until I think they’re OK. I may go back and perform Shootouts – comparisons of 3 or 4 rums that are close to each on this list. After the Shootout the list will be re-ordered. I may even go back and re-taste a single rum, and my mood that day may make the order change.

All this means that this list will be extremely subjective, will change constantly, and is probably somewhat faulty in general.

For these reasons I do not suggest taking this list literally, but somewhat comparatively. If you see one rum directly above another then read both reviews and see which appeals to you more.

Also, this list won’t mean much until I get a large number of rums reviewed.

Please note: Numerous people have mentioned this following point, so I think I’ll get it out of the way… There are no El Dorado rums listed here. When I “discovered” El Dorado rums, I wasn’t blogging much and never got around to doing proper reviews for any of them. They are – all of them – fantastic. Complex but extremely well-balanced, flavorful, the older ones are quite tasty and smooth, and the younger ones are very mixable. And they are all quite reasonable in price. The 25- and 15-year-olds would land somewhere in my top 5 or 6 favorite rums. They are very highly recommended.

Highly Recommended
Pyrat Cask 23 – $240
Ron Zacapa Centenario 23-year-old – $40
Zaya Gran Reserva – $40
Flor de Caña 21 – $75
Khukri Coronation – Unknown Price
Appleton Estate 21-year-old – $63
Doorly’s XO – $33
Pyrat XO – $21
Pyrat Pistol – $18 (375ml)
Castries Peanut Rum Creme – $29
Appleton V/X – $17
Diplomático Reserva Exclusiva – $28
Appleton Special Gold – $12
Havana Club Añejo Blanco – Unknown Price

Recommended
Plantation Grande Reserve – low $20s
Kaniche Rum Martinique – $27
Ron Matusalem Platino – $17
Foursquare Spiced – $17
Fazenda Mae De Ouro – $27
Cruzan Premium Light – $11
Saint James Royal Ambre – $19
Palo Viejo White – $8
Mount Gay Special Reserve – $20
Pyrat Blanco – $16
Angostura 1919 – $26
Prichard’s Fine Rum – $36

On The Edge
Saint James Hors D’Age – $33
Clément XO- $140
Beleza Pura – $28
Angostura 1824 – $55
Gosling’s Gold – $12
Mount Gay Eclipse – $17
Brugal White Label – $10
Flor De Caña Extra Dry 4-year-old – $14
Cruzan Estate Dark – $12
DonQ Gold – $12
Palo Viejo Gold – $9
Bacardi Gold – $12
Cruzan Coconut – $9

I Can’t Recommend This Stuff
Parrot Bay Coconut – $10
Ron Botran Añejo – $14
Prichard’s Crystal – $26
Barrows’ Grand Reserve – $45
English Harbour 5-year-old – $22
Leblon – $25
Appleton White – $14
Bacardi Superior White – $16
Malibu Coconut – $11
Myers’s Platinum White – $14
DonQ Cristal – $12

84 Responses to “Rum Ranking”

  1. Dan Says:

    As an avid captain morgan fan, and a recent disciple of everything Pyrat, I have to thank you for your reviews. I drink for flavor, but I don’t like the harshness of whiskey and scotch, but I love rum. I have fallen in love with Pyrat Pistol, and have spent many evenings sipping it reading your reviews. I am excited to try the rums you reccommend, particularly the Foursquare Spiced.

    Thanks,
    Dan

  2. Scottes Says:

    I strongly suggest you try the Foursquare Spiced. It’s not like Captain Morgan’s at all, so don’t expect the same thing since many of the spices used are totally different. The natural tastes are wonderful, and it’s very sippable. I’ve also heard great things about Papagayo Spiced, but I have not been able to find it. Yet.

  3. Dan Says:

    thanks, as it is I’m having trouble finding the foursquare spiced. I live in oklahoma and the liquor stores here say they can’t order it. Any suggestions?

  4. Scottes Says:

    I think you’re out of luck until you do some traveling. It seems that Oklahoma does not allow shipments of alcohol, so you can’t order it from an online liquor store. And if the liquor stores you checked can’t get it then you’ll have to go out of state somehow.

    I know the feeling, sine Massachusetts is also a site that doesn’t allow shipments of alcohol.

  5. JoAnne Says:

    What do you think of the rum barboncourt, 8 or 15 year?

  6. Scottes Says:

    Well, the first time I had Barbancourt it was the 15-year-old which I tried about 3 years ago. I thought it was terrible. My friend Phil and I tried it – twice – and we agreed that it was not worthy, so we poured the bottle into the campfire. It burned quite nicely.

    However, I have since begun to get an appreciation for rum made from cane sugar or syrup, rather than molasses. So I’d really have to put Barbancourt back on my list of rums to try. I truly think that I’ll have a much better opinion of it, know that I know what to expect.

    For what it’s worth, I’ve heard from many people that the 8-year-old is the better of the two. That will be the one I try.

  7. Scottes Says:

    I tried the Barbancourt 8-year-old for the first time tonight. WOW! This is a rum that I will be hunting down to enjoy, review, and enjoy some more. Very very nice.

  8. Robert Burr Says:

    Scott,

    I enjoy reading your reviews. As a life-long rum enthusiast, I can appreciate the evolution of your taste buds. Every country that makes fine rum, adjusts it to the sensibilities of the local population, as do wine producers around the globe. Hence, the broad range of subjective opinions, taken in context, reveals much about each region, their philosophy and unique perspective on cane spirits.

    Your list of best rated rums includes some of my favorites also. Here’s a few that may make it on your list some day.

    El Dorado 12 from Guyana. If you enjoy Zacapa, it’s sure to please. Also, the El Dorado 15 and 21 are exception, bold, complex rums that earn top awards.

    Flor de Cana 18 is the best of breed from Nicaragua. The 21 in the blue ceramic bottle is not actually 21 years old.

    Abuelo 7 from Panama is a delightful blend.

    Santa Teresa in Venezuela makes excellent rums, especially the 1796 and their flavored rums — orange and Araku (coffee).

    Matusalem Gran Reserva 15 from Dominican Republic is sweet, smokey, buttery, smooth and quite delightful.

    From Martinique, try the Clement Cuvee Homere, a blend of three excellent vintage years. Also from Martinique, the JM VSOP is a satisfying blend. One of my favorites is La Favorite Rhum Agricole Vieux.

    Thanks for sharing your experiences and opinions. I, as well as others I’m sure, find them interesting, entertaining and valuable.

    Rob

  9. Scottes Says:

    Rob, we have some similar tastes! I have the El Dorado 15- and 21-year-old rums, but I haven’t gotten around to doing proper reviews for them. I broke out the 15 again this weekend, and recognized once again that it is simply magnificent.

    I recently got the Santa Teresa 1796 and it is great. I have been enjoying the Ron Matusalem Gran Reserva for several years now. Again, I just haven’t gotten a chance to give them full reviews, but all 4 of these rums go high on my list.

    I wish that I could get the Flor De Cana 18. I’ll keep looking. The 21 is great, so I’d imagine that another 3 years of aging would be very nice.

    I’ll keep a close eye out for your other suggestions since we apparently think alike. Many thanks!

  10. Tom Says:

    What in your opinion is the best Martinique produced rum?’

    Best,

    Tom V

  11. Scottes Says:

    Sorry, I really don’t have enough experience in Martinique rums to make an informed decision.

    I have had Clement VSOP, which I think is very good but not possibly “the best.” I’ve also had their XO, which is also very good. The Kaniche Martinique is excellent, but again not possibly the best possible. The last one of note – I’ve had the J. M. 1997, which is fantastic. Beyond these I’ve only had 3 or 4 other Martinique rhums.

    You might want to ask over to the Ministry Of Rum forums, http://ministryofrum.com/forums/index.php – there are several folks there who know agricoles and Martinique rums far better than I do.

  12. Dan Says:

    Well I do have some friends coming up from Texas next week, I’ll have to see if they can find the Foursquare Spiced.

  13. Dan Says:

    No luck, they couldn’t find it. They said they had heard that it might have been discontinued though! Have you heard either way? Very dissapointing if it has.

  14. Scottes Says:

    I *really* don’t think it has been discontinued. I’m not sure, of course, but I truly doubt it.

    This place has it, and they can ship to TX.

    http://www.cooperstownwine.com/

    I couldn’t find any place in Texas that carried it, though – not that this means it’s not available.

  15. Dan Says:

    Thanks for looking!
    I talked to my Dad in Monterey, Ca and he found a place that carries it in no time. I’m trying to move back to that area in Dec so I’ll be able to get it wheever I want.

    I just got a bottle of Pyray Casc 23 last weekend and WOW! I can’t believe how good it is. A couple friends and I had a little tasting with it, Pyrat XO Reserve and Pyrat Pistol. I’m not too good at picking out individual flavors and smells but I picked up a strong molasses aroma and eventually found it in the flavor. It’s so smooth, almost like your drinking candy, but not overly sweet. I’m in love. Thaks for your suggestions, I can’t wait to try more.
    -Dan

  16. Scottes Says:

    The Pyrat 23 is damned nice – though I don’t like paying the price!

    Glad you could find the Foursquare Spiced. It’s worth the wait. It’s a real eye-opener for what can be done with a spiced rum, and nothing like the more popular stuff. Enjoy!

  17. Chrissy Says:

    Mt. Gay Extra Old, Chairman’s Reserve (St. Lucia), El Dorado & Cockspur V.S.O.R, are the few that I consistently keep stocked in my cabinet. I’m not into cocktails or flavoured rums (so I have a set of them unopened ie. Tortuga Coconut), & I prefer my rum mixed with ginger ale. So I find those 3 go quite well unless I choose to mix with coconut water. I have a bottle of Admiral Rodney (Extra Old St Lucia rum), that I’ve yet to try, but I’ll let you know (the bottle is rather pretty & I don’t want to open it just yet).

  18. Fritz Says:

    I’ve been through my high-ticket rum snobbery phase, and have to say that — now that I’ve come back down to Earth — the best value I’ve discovered for my rum dollar is Mt. Gay Sugar Cane Rum (known as “Sugar Cane Brandy” elsewhere in the world, I’m told). I find it balanced, well crafted and far more, er, “elegant” than its modest price tag would seem to afford. The only problem I have with it is that I have to ask my specialty booze store to haul it out of the storeroom whenever I need to buy a bottle!

    Looking forward to your review –

  19. Fritz Says:

    I should mention that my preferred method of sipping my Sugar Cane Rum is on the rocks — I understand that this may disqualify me from opining on its simple, reasonably priced excellence, but there you go. Honesty is the best policy!

  20. Scottes Says:

    I remember drinking the Sugar Cane Brandy many many years ago, but it was so long ago that I don’t remember anything about it. I do have to re-visit that one, for sure…

  21. The Mayor Of Exotica Says:

    Are you familiar with El Cacique? It’s a Venezuelan rum, a favorite of mine. I haven’t tried mixing with it yet. Not the easiest rum to get, but I think people in NY can get it easily.

  22. Scottes Says:

    I have seen Cacique here in Massachusetts, and have heard from a few folks that it’s a good white rum, especially for the price. You’re the 3rd person to mention it in 2 days… I’ll keep my eyes open.

  23. Adam Says:

    Your highly recommended list is very similar to my top 10 list. I’ve got to add on there the Ron del Barrilito Three Star, Mt Gay XO, and our new friend Oronoco.

    I’ve really gotta try that Castries!! I’m DYING for it!!

    Just to throw out a brand I haven’t seen appear on your site is Arehucas out of the Canary Islands. Im working with their US Importer who is having trouble getting it placed in the US (PA and Nevada) as their bottles are all 700ml. They’re 12 year old is wonderful, they’ve also got a Honey Rum which is nice, a little too sweet though. Their top of the line is called Capitan Kidd, a blend of rums up to 20 years old that has a wonderful flavor and very complex, but then the finish falls short, not worth the $180 price tag it would be retailing for.

    • Steve Says:

      I was wondering the US Importer you were working with. What kind of problems were they having? Please write me back if you get this, I know it has been a couple of years.

  24. Fritz Says:

    A word or two about Ron del Barrillito Three-star:

    A few years ago, I had some friends over for an informal taste test featuring a bunch of $30-$40+ rums (I bought them cheap in Latin America), and the RdB *** came in top dog. I wish I could remember what the other rums were (I know one was Mt. Gay Extra Old, probably the “commonest” of the bunch), but I guess I had too much fun that night. The competition was fierce, though!

  25. Scottes Says:

    I’ve had a bottle of the RdB 3-star for a while now… I just haven’t gotten around to tasting it. One of these days…

  26. Adam Says:

    RdB-3… sounds like a great movie, with the smoothest best ending! haha

  27. chi Says:

    who knows where can i find cacique in nyc??

  28. Scottes Says:

    Beacon Wines and New York Wine Exchange both list it.

  29. Stella Says:

    Cacique is good, but it is definitely not a white rum… aged amber cane rum (2+ years I think is VZ law), as are most (if not all?) of the Venezuelan rums. Honestly I hated rum until I tried VZ rum.

    Until today I was convinced you couldn’t get it here in the US (thought there might have been some weird embargo) I am ecstatic to find out you can, and expecially here in NYC. Cacique is good, but so is Santa Teresa and Pampero. I like Pampero best, but Cacique is the favorite of my VZ friend.

  30. Randy Says:

    Hey Scott, got any ideas where to get some appleton estate masters blend legacy?

  31. Scottes Says:

    Randy,

    From what I’ve heard, and from what I can find, Legacy isn’t available in the US. Canada, or Jamaica… Bummer. I’ve been hoping to get a bottle myself.

  32. Bob Edwards Says:

    I am a fan of Palo Viejo, as it is a very smooth rum, good for sipping as well as mixing, and at an unbeatable low price. But the distributers in this area (Ohio-Kentucky) can no longer get it. Do you know what is going on with the availability of Palo Viejo in the US?

  33. Andre Says:

    Love your site, Since I was born and raised in the caribbean I have been a rum lover all of my life. Well since the age of 18. I must admit that had not heard of the Ron Zacapa 23 until I came across this site. I have since recently purchased it and find it heavenly.
    I have notice that a Ron Zacapa XO exists. This rum has been aged for 25years using the solera process and I was wondering what are your thoughts on this.

  34. Scottes Says:

    I have yet to try the XO, though I’m certainly looking forward to the day I do. From what others have said, the XO is a slightly finer rum, a touch smoother, a bit more complex. All in all, it’s probably not worth the extra price to buy it often. But I’m sure the XO will make a very nice treat from time to time.

  35. Chet Hansra Says:

    Cacique definitely tops that list for me!
    especially when your considering value for money!

    impressive ranking nonetheless!

  36. Kevinn Says:

    My friend brought me a bottle of RdB-3. It’s a very smooth rum with a hint of spice. Although, for all its smoothness, it hits the stomach with a little force.
    I find it best served after a meal, during the evening, with an outside temperature of 72 deg F.
    Question: is there a finer make of RdB? Maybe a 4-star?

  37. JP Says:

    Hi all, just brought back a bottle og Chairmans Reserve dark rum from St. Lucia. Its smooth and delicious. Any idea whether hard to find rums can be purchased on the web? regards, jp

  38. Michael Says:

    Hi – an excellent site. I have also been on a fairly exhaustive rum tasting exercise over the last 10 years and have tasted all rums reviewed here. Although I have been through phases over the years my most consistent favourite is Ron Zacapa 23 yo – one of life’s great pleasures.

  39. DK Says:

    Great site – I look forward to working my way through more of your recommendations.

    If ever in Canada you should give Bacardi 1873 a try!

    During my years living in the US I was always dissappointed that most establishments did not stock any great rums.

    I doubt Bacardi 1873 will make your list of recommended brands, but it is a fine “mainstream” product, with a very smooth taste AND it is commonly available – You can find it at every decent liquor store and bar in Canada. The U.S. needs something comparable in taste and availability!

  40. Greg F Says:

    Having been to Central America and St Lucia, I am abig rum fan. have friends who work and travel– they bring back Flor de cana: 7 and 12 yr old are quite nice. Been to belize with its One barrel (which is okay– a bit too sweet for me). Had an AWESOME homemade spiced rum in a restaurant in Gros islet St Lucia.

    Want to find where i can buy any of the Flor de cana gold (not light) varieties in New England. Any ideas?

  41. Scottes Says:

    Greg,

    I was just in a Kappy’s (Peabody, MA) and they had several Flor De Canas. I’ve also found it at Liquorland in Boston, as well as Cambridge Mall liquors near Alewife.

  42. Marlon I. Calero Says:

    Hey Scott how are you? I live in miami fl. but i was born in Nicaragua i am glad that you have taking a liking to Flor de Cana Centenario. i do not enjoy their regular rums as i think they are pure alcohol but i have to say that their centenario are the best all 3 of them however i do have to tell you that their 18yo Centenario is the best. I applaud you for taking the time to look out for all this Rums i suggest you take a trip to miami florida and i can assure you that you will not be disappointed if you do please let me know you have my email write me and ill give you my number you will find some of the best liguor stores out here since we latinos love our drinks. every once in a while i take a trip to nicaragua ill let you know and i can you everything dirt cheap i would like to see centenario high on that list of highly recomended.

  43. Nathan Says:

    First I would like to say this a fantastic site which I visit often. If anyone ever gets to try the range from Berry Bros and Murray Mcdavid, I cannot recommend it highly enough. I’m pretty sure they are both (uncertain about Murray Mcdavid) Scotch producers that have recented started bottling rums. Murray Mcdavid do a 13yr old pot stilled Jamaican rum from a now long non-existent distillery which has so much flavour and length it’s outrageous.

  44. Keith Says:

    Pyrat & Zaya all the way!!! Love ‘em.

    For every day mixed drinks – I actually like the Bacardi Select….thoughts?

    Keep up the good work Scott!

  45. Scottes Says:

    Yep, two of my favorites.

    I still haven’t tried the Bacardi Select though. Brand-shy, even though I’ve heard that it is one of their good ones.

  46. Enrique Says:

    So, Scott if you were able to buy any rum no mattet the price, which one would you preffer?

  47. Scottes Says:

    So far, from the ones I know, the Pyrat Cask 1623. There’s a Zacapa 25-year-old that I certainly wouldn’t mind trying though.

  48. David E Says:

    If you have a chance, you should get some master blender’s legacy from Appleton Estates. I like it even better than the 21 yr. I bought it at the distillery in Jamaca. I don’t know if it is sold here in the states. If it’s not, i need to drink it slower! :)

  49. Scottes Says:

    Drink it slowly, David! You can’t get it in the states – only Canada and some islands in the Caribbean.

  50. Meesterpaul Says:

    Have you tried the Ron Pampero?
    Here’s a review I saw recently:

    http://www.rumdood.com/archive/2008/06/04/rum-review-ron-pampero-aniversario.aspx

  51. Scottes Says:

    Though I haven’t written a review on the Ron Pampero Anniversario, I have been drinking it for years and find it to be an excellent rum. The Dood’s review is spot-on, as usual. I highly recommend it, and find it to be a good bargain for an excellent rum.

  52. David E Says:

    I just got a couple of bottles of four square of the 1.75 L variety. OH…..MY…..GOSH… this is great stuff!! Great in a fruit drink (for the wife)! Great as a rum and coke (I just put it in a route 44 with sonic ice)! I can’t wait to try it in my cooking. I have a great recipe for rum basted chicken. Why are two of the sites I go to discontinuing it?

  53. Scottes Says:

    Discontinuing it?? I want to know why more places don’t carry it! I can only find it at one store, and only occasionally. The Foursquare is great stuff.

  54. Pyratesurgeon Says:

    Have you come across the African Starr rum and given it a taste? It’s a white rum and refreshing to the palate.

  55. prakasam kannan Says:

    Dear Scott hi iam from india and a lover of rum.I wonder have you tasted any rum from my country?If you have tasted any rum whats your opinion?If you have not , try “oldmonk” rum .

  56. DarkNStormy Says:

    Scott I would be interested to see where you rank El Dorado….their 5 yr old up to 25 Special Reserve.

  57. Sean Says:

    Steve,

    Having lived in Barbados for some time I became an avid rum drinker. Over the years I have managed to pull together quite a list of rums from around the world (not all that different then yours). I appreciate your time and reviews.

    One question. I’m a fan of Zaya and the other day I picked up another bottle (since I was getting low). A peculiar thing I noticed. Instead of saying it was produced and bottled in Guatemala it now states it was bottled in Trinidad. The label and everything is the same just the name of the country is different. Have you heard anything about this?

    On another note…if you are ever in Las Vegas go to Mandalay Bay hotel….inside is the Rum Jungle…not only the best food around, but over 100 different rums to choose from.

  58. Scottes Says:

    Diageo took over distribution for the Guatemalan rums, and Zaya moved to producing out of Trinidad. I find this new version to be quite different, but still very good. I like the stronger presence of vanilla.

  59. Scottes Says:

    DarkNStormy: I *love* El Dorado rums.

    So far, the 12 is my favorite – it’s a bit bolder than the 15, and I like that extra boldness, which also helps when mixing. The 12 is also significantly cheaper than the 15, so it’s easier to buy. A friend has promised me some of the 25-year-old – I just have to drag myself to his house.

  60. Juan G Says:

    Dear Scott,
    I am currently in Jamaica, and I read your reviews, I agree completely that Zacapa 23 might be up there with the appleton. I do know for a fact, as I drank it. That Zacapa XO is actually better than 23. Smoother and sweeter than 23. At more than $80 a bottle, hurts in the pocket, but I didn’t mind one bit that it was gone in one night. it is that good!

  61. Capn Jimbo Says:

    Hello once again Scotte! I’m proud to announce that at The Rum Project (http://rumproject.com/) we recently posted our 100th rum review! A lot of fun but surely a ton of work, especially when we invest hours in tasting, and hours more in writing our reviews.

    Accordingly, you may interested in our top rated rums:

    1. Mount Gay Extra Old
    2. Seales 10
    3. Barbancourt Five Star
    4. Ron Matusalem Gran Reserva
    5. El Dorado 12 Year
    6. Appleton Extra (12 year)
    7. Prichard’s Fine and Select Rums

    It is also worth mentioning some amazing “best buys”:

    1. Rum San Pablo
    2. Doorly’s Five Year
    3. El Dorado Five Year
    4. Alleyne Arthur’s Special Barbados Rum (Seales)
    5.

    And some rums that you just gotta have:

    1. Pusser’s Blue Label
    2. Jack Tar Dark Rum
    3. Ron Santero Coffee Rum
    4. Wray & Nephews Cream Rum
    5. Wray & Nephews Overproof

    Best to you Scotte and Cheers!

    • Paul Says:

      Capn Jimbo, I have been following some of your post and reviews and thought I would reply with some info that might interest you. I am sitting on a large amount of San Pablo Rum from Curacao as well as some Wray & Nephew Overproof Rum from Jamaica. I am located in Florida and am in the process of selling it. I am currently in contact with a couple of potential buyers. Thought I would contact you to see if you have any input in regards to this.

  62. Jeff Says:

    Newby to the site. So my comment is for the first listings. I have a fairly large selection of my own and I agree with most of your rankings. The one I don’t understand is WHY Bacardi is even listed ?!?
    Have you tried Pitu from Brazil, I thought it was terrible tasted like bad tequila.

    • Scottes Says:

      I haven’t heard enough good stuff about any Bacardi rums other than the 8-year-old, and i haven’t been compelled to try it, really. There’s so many other rums out there… But I did review the Bacardi gold rum and gave it high marks – it’s a damn fine mixing gold.

      I tried the Pitu once, briefly. It is fairly bad IMHO.

  63. Thanos Prounarou Says:

    Amazing site(!), very interesting article.
    But what about El Dorado Rums?
    Respect
    Thanos from Baba Au Rum Bar, Athens Greece!

    • Scottes Says:

      Someone just asked this last week… I love El Dorado rums. They’re among my favorites, particularly the older ones. The 25 is rare, but unbelievable. I try to have a bottle of 12 and 15 onhand always. I just haven’t had a chance to do a proper review – I haven’t been reviewing anything for a couple years now.

      And sorry, no plans to travel to Greece. I still have 30-something States to visit!

  64. Greg McCall Says:

    The Guatemalan Zaya was excellent, then I found the Zacapa 23 year old, and now the Zacapa XO…wow! But good luck finding it. The only place I know to get it is the Mexico City airport duty free at $90US or two for $150US.

    I’m looking forward to an update of your rum ranking. Would love to know if this is forthcoming. Cheers, Greg.

    • Avery Harris Says:

      Hey Greg. I hope you’re still drinking RZC-23. The best price I’ve found was at the Santo Domingo(D.R.) airport. My last 2 visits(Sep & Dec 2012) I bought 4 bottles. 1 bottle for $52US and 2 bottles for $80US duty free. NO JOKE! What a steal! Oh yeah, I still have the receipts! Visit soon, and hang out with the locals a few days. The people are great!

  65. Mr Teach Says:

    Thanks for the list. I have been drinking rum as my favorite drink for 20+ years. Nothing compares to it in my world.
    I (finally) tried the Ron Zacapa Centenario 23 a few weeks ago and it instantly made the top of my list. I had tried the Pyrat Cask 23 before and I think the Zacapa is better overall.
    I have to say I disagree with you on one thing and that was the flavored rums. I use the Parrot Bay coconut 90 proof as a mixer when I go someplace with my flask. As a straight up sipper it isn’t anything special but as a quick and easy mixed drink it works well.
    Foursquare is available in Texas. If you have a Spec’s near you, tell them and they will get it if it isn’t on the shelf.
    OK, back to my original reason for posting… I wanted to thank you for this list. I have tried a lot of them but there were several I hadn’t yet and now I have incentive to give them a shot.

    FYI, If someone ever gives you Potter’s rum as a Christmas gift, punch them square in the mouth. That is the most horrid thing I have ever tasted that claimed to be rum. What was you worst ever?

  66. B. Brady Says:

    I just bought (based on excellent reviews) Cruzan Original Single Barrel Rum. I see other Cruzan rums listed and reviewed, but am most interested in your take on this particular rum.

    • Scottes Says:

      I like it quite a bit – though I have to admit that I tend to mix simple drinks with it more often than I sip it neat. It’s one of my favorite rums to mix with ginger ale and a bit of lime.

  67. Anonymous Says:

    interested to hear if you have tried other diplomatico rums and your thoughts….

  68. Andy Dodds Says:

    Hey Scottes,

    I am new to alcohol, but I already know that I will be a rum guy. I liked the bottle of bacardi gold I had better than gin, beer, or vodka so far. My first drink ever was Johnnie Walker Black, and that might be the only thing that comes close. I don’t have any knowledge of what is quality rum, but if you say bacardi is crap, then I believe you! My question is this: If you were to recommend two gold rums and two white rums that are under $20, what would they be? I’m a broke college kid who wants a versatile sipping/mixing rum =)

  69. Anonymous Says:

    I have 38 yr old Ron Matusalem rum for sale. If interested email me at m_noseworthy@hotmail.com for particulars.

  70. Shannon Says:

    Great site and covers a wide range of rums. In my experience I have to say that Zacapa Centenario 23 yr old is in the 3 top of my list. With all of my travels, i have been very fortunate to expierence some fine rums, including a rum from an oak barrel that the owner of a hotel in Barbados shared with me. It was quite interesting.

    In my travels, the most interesting rum comparison I was involved with a Guatemalan friend of mine who insisted that nothing was better than his Zacapa Centenario 23 yr old. We sat around and drank several rums such as Flor de Cana 15 and 18 yr old, Mount Gay Extra Old, Tres Esquinas, El Dorado, 10 Cane, Appleton VX and Estate, Barcelo Anejo, Havana Club Anejo, Brugal, Pampero Aniversario, and a few others that i rarely drink with a mixer and not worth mentioning. When all was said and done he became an avid fan of Angostura 1824 and 1919.

    I personally use Angostura 1824, Zacapa Centenario, and Flor de Cana Centenario are the basis for my comparisons to other rums. This is not to say I don’t enjoy other rums.

    I have to say Matusalem Gran Reserva is really a nice sipping rum. However, Angostura 1919 is still my everyday favorite.

  71. Anonymous Says:

    Hi, Great site.. just bought a bottle of Zacapa 23 year old, can’t wait to try it.. I’m a big fan of the El Dorado 15, 21 and single barrel.. whats your thoughts on El Dorado vs the Ron Zacapa 23 old..

    Thanks
    Tony

    • Scottes Says:

      Zacapa and El Dorado are two very different rums. The Zacapa is not as complex as the ED, much sweeter and smoother. I really can’t compare them – other than saying that the Zacapa is my favorite, but the ED 21 is not very far behind. They’re quite different though.

  72. Spossum Says:

    I just came back from Panama earlier this week and was very impressed by the whole Ron Abuelo line. I still need to try their Centuria however.

  73. Avery Harris Says:

    The Ron Zacapa Centenario 23-year-old is my all-time favorite. I will henceforth refer to it as “RZC-23″. I always drink it neat and at room temp. The fact that you could rate another rum even close to the taste and quality of RZC-23 means that I must now try Zaya Gran Reserva. Thanks for the review and recommendation!

    • juan Says:

      I got the Zac apartment xoxo for 50 bucks a bottle. Catch is you pay 15 dollars for up to 3 bottles for shipping so if you don’t mind having more than one or thinking of sharing it’s a great buy online
      Shoppers vineyard .Com

  74. Hugh Hill Says:

    I am a big fan of the Flora de Cana Gold 4 Year Old Aged Rum. But I recently discovered that they relabeled the rum “Anejo Oro” 4 Year Aged Rum. But I find this new rum to be darker and a bit more “malty” than the previous blend. The previous blend has a lighter color/hue and was better tasting. Can you tell me if the company changed the formula for the 4 year old rum? I am a bit disappointed in the “new” Anejo Oro! :o(


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