Last night my friend Phil and I sat back and sampled several outstanding rums.
We started with Gosling’s Family Reserve – heavy, dark. Very good but I’m not such a fan of dark rums like this.
Next came Appleton 21-year-old. Excellent stuff, quite complex, but the strongest burn of the bunch.
Then Santa Teresa 1796 – excellent, quite excellent. Definitely one of the top rums I’ve ever had.
We cracked the Zaya Gran Reserva next – oh, this is beautiful stuff. I have had it before, and I don’t remember it being this good. In fact I’ve considered it over-priced for some time, but last night it was magic in a bottle.
The Zaya reminded us both of the Ron Zacapa 23, so Phil grabbed his bottle from the fridge. Also fantastic, as usual. I really do love this stuff – sweet, smooth, rich, decently complex… great stuff.
But we couldn’t decide between the Zaya or the Ron Zacapa, so we went back and forth between the two several times, taking little sips, trying to decide which was better. After 6 or 8 little samples over time, neither of us could decide which was better. The Zacapa is a little lighter and sweeter, the Zaya a bit heavier and richer. Both are absolutely fantastic.
I know that I owe some full reviews on all of these rums – well, the Appleton 21-year-old has a review listed to the left. But I haven’t had time to sit each one down and give it a thorough tasting. There’s no doubt that all of these belong in the “Highly Recommended” category, but they also deserve an appropriate amount of time to discern all the subtleties.
I’ll also have to go back and compare the Ron Zacapa and Zaya again. Was it just last night? I don’t think so, though. We definitely spent some time sampling the two back to back… But a full review of each may bring out some things.