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Bermudez Ron Anejo 1852

Review:  Bermudez 1852 5 Anos de Anejamiento  87.5/100
a review by chip Dykstra (Aka Arctic Wolf)
Posted May 2, 2010

Earlier this week I received a welcome call from Westway L. LTD., who are the importers of the Bermudez rums in my home province of Alberta. They had suggested to me about six months ago that they would be bringing the Bermudez rums into Western Canada, and as a way of introducing the rums into this area would like for me to review a few samples of the range.  The rum has arrived and will be released in Alberta with a few weeks.

The Ron Bermúdez Company, (as I guessed from the label on the bottle) has a long history that stretches back to 1852. This is almost as old as the Dominican Republic itself, and I think it is easy to suggest that the Ron Bermudez Company is an important part of the history of the Dominican Republic. Don Erasmo Bermudez apparently created the company’s first rum, sold as Bitter Panacea which quickly became extremely popular and provided the foundation for the company’s  success.

The Company is currently in its fourth generation of management, still represented by the Bermudez family. Don Carlos Alberto Bermúdez Pippa, is currently the management leader for the company.  At the time of this writing I have been unable to access the Ron Bermudez website but I leave the link here in case access is available at a future time.

In the Bottle  4/5

The Ron Bermudez Anejo 1852 arrives in a tall darkly coloured brown bottle with rich fonts and a bold style.  The label is entirely in Spanish which surprises me, but fortunately my Spanish is just good enough for me to decipher a five-year age statement on the bottle, and the 40 % alcohol by volume spirit strength.

I am disappointed in the black metal screw cap, but this is not an a super premium spirit so I have not deducted a major penalty for the inferior cap,  (just a minor penalty).

In the Glass 9/10

In the glass the rum is a nice clean amber brown colour.  The first aroma from the glass is crisp and gentle; a soft caramel and perhaps a mild vanilla.   I allowed the glass to decant a little longer than I would normally,  but I really liked the building aroma of baking spices which became  rich and fragrant with brown sugars and cinnamon.  This aroma became more assertive over time expressing a rich molasses and a spicy toffee.   There also appeared to be a gentle smoke in the air with vague scents of dried fruit and fresh oak.

When I swirled the glass, I was amazed that the rum possessed so much oil.  A thick layer of glistening oil coated the side of my glass and I watched as legs struggled to form and then ever so slowly crawled down back into the rum.

In the Mouth  53/60

The first taste of Bermudez gave me a bit of a start.  The style of the rum was more akin to whisky in the mouth than it was rum.  It possesses a clean mouth with crisp sharp oak  spices.  The rum flavours are there in spades, make no mistake;  rich caramel and butterscotch flavours lead out with soft ripe fruit following quickly.  A touch of citrus zest finds its way into the oak spices and the result is quite delicious.  There is just a hint of a slightly bitter smoke with ghosts of raisins and other dry fruit but this is very indistinct.  There is also a vague suggestion of something metallic sitting in the rum as well.  If you drink soda pop from a can rather than from a glass or plastic bottle you will recognize that metallic hint.  I find this rum sits just on the edge between a nice sipper and a great mixer.  I guess this means that I can do both with no regrets either way.

In the Throat 13/15

The rum exits the mouth with a rush of orange peel spice followed by a long finish of sweet butterscotch and caramel.  It is just a little harsh as it swats the tonsils on the way down but the burn is appealing.  An ever so slight bitterness creeps in at the end which tastes of that vague metallic flavour I noted in the mouth.

The Afterburn 8.5/10

This is really quite a rum.   It is perhaps slightly harsh in the throat; it has a vague slightly bitter smokiness;  and it has those hints of metallic flavours which all stop me from scoring the rum in the stratosphere.   However, I recognize that those slight flaws give the rum character which is very persuasive to my palate.  The rum also possesses  a full flavour profile which ensures I will return often.

If you are interested in comparing more scores, here is a link to my other published Rum Reviews.


Suggested Recipes

While I was sampling the Ron Bermudez,  I added a dash of Coca cola to the rum. (I do this with just about every rum I sample as Coke is my first mixer when exploring the range of recipes a rum may be suitable for.)  The Cola completely smoothed out the flavour profile, and eliminated all hints of bitterness from my glass.  I cannot help but recommend a rum and coke as the starter bar drink for the Ron Bermudez Anejo.  I will also suggest that it to be constructed in the Cuba Libre’ Style.

Bermudez and Cola

2 oz Ron Bermudez Anejo
Cola (Choose your favourite cola)

Lime slice for garnish

Build over ice
Add the Lime slice to the glass
Stir well and enjoy!

Since a traditional Cuba Libre’ worked so well with the Bermudez Anejo I decided to try a traditional Mojito as well.

A Dominican Mojito

1 1/2 oz Ron Bermudez Anejo
3  Large Ice Cubes
1/2  Lime
1  Tsp Simple Syrup (Dissolve a sugar cube in 1 Tsp hot water then let it cool)
4  oz sparkling water (or Club soda)
3  sprigs of mint leaves

Add the light Rum to a highball glass over the ice
add the simple sugar
Squeeze half a lime into the glass
place the rest of the lime into the glass
Add the sparkling water.
Gently bruise the mint between the fingers and add it to the glass
Stir lightly

This Mojito is delicious.  In my opinion it carries a richer rum flavour than a traditional Mojito made with a light rum.

And to top off my recipe suggestions I worked out a nice punch style drink that I think everyone will really enjoy.

Bermudez Punch

3 oz Ron Bermudez Anejo
Juice from one orange
Juice from half of one grapefruit
3/8 oz Maraschino Cherry Liqueur

Build over ice
Serve with a slice of lime for garnish!

When I  squeeze my orange and grapefruit I strain out the heavy pulp but leave some of the finer pulp in the mix.   This one is completely delicious!

And remember, the aim is not to drink more, it is to drink better!


You may (loosely) interpret the scores as follows.

0-25     A spirit with a rating this low would actually kill you.
26-49   Depending upon your fortitude you might actually survive this.
50 -59  You are safe to drink this…but you shouldn’t.
60-69   Substandard swill which you may offer to people you do not want to see again.
70-74    Now we have a fair mixing rum or whisky.  Accept this but make sure it is mixed into a cocktail.
75-79    You may begin to serve this to friends, again probably still cocktail territory.
80-84    We begin to enjoy this spirit neat or on the rocks. (I will still primarily mix cocktails)
85-89    Excellent for sipping or for mixing!
90-94    Definitely a primary sipping spirit, in fact you may want to hoard this for yourself.
95-97.5 The Cream of the Crop
98+       I haven’t met this bottle yet…but I want to.

Very loosely we may put my scores into terms that you may be familiar with on a Gold, Silver, and  Bronze medal  scale as follows:

70 – 79.5    Bronze Medal (Recommended only as a mixer)
80 – 89.5     Silver Medal (Recommended for sipping and or a high quality mixer)
90 – 95         Gold Medal (Highly recommended for sipping and for sublime cocktails.)
95.5+            Platinum Award (Highest Recommendation)

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