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Dos Maderas (5+5) PX

Review: Dos Maderas (5 + 5) PX    88.5/100
A Review by Chip Dykstra (Aka Arctic Wolf)
Posted On April 19, 21012

The Dos Maderas (5+5) PX is a rum of Caribbean origin (Barbados and Guyana to be exact), which after first aging in for five years in American oak casks in the Caribbean, is then transported to Spain to spend an additional five years in Spanish oak (sherry casks). This additional aging occurs in two stages. First the rum spends 3 years in Palo Cortado sherry casks, and then the rum spends the final two years of aging in Pedro Ximénez sherry casks.

This three-step aging process is very unique and brings to the rum a very interesting new taste profile. While ‘Sherried Whisky’ has a long tradition in Scotland, a ‘Sherried Rum’ is a relatively new (and relatively exciting) development. This product is being brought to my market by Philippe Dandurand Wines Limited.

In the Bottle 4/5

The Dos Maderas (5+5) PX arrives in a clear glass bottle which (in some markets) is encased in a nice cardboard canister. I like the presentation especially the nice corked enclosure. My only quibble is that my bottle has a clear plastic label (rather than the darkly coloured brownish red label shown to the left). This label allows colour of the rum inside the bottle to interfere with my ability to read it. Maybe I am getting old and need new glasses, then again, maybe I wouldn’t need new glasses if labels are designed with proper colour contrast in mind.

In the Glass 9/10

The rum displays itself as a rich brown coloured spirit which is obviously displaying the characteristic hue of a ‘sherried’ spirit. The aroma which rises from the glass is full of rich caramel, pungent dry fruit, and sweet candied baking spices.

As the glass breathes the aroma seems to ooze a certain luxury and class. Vanilla, cinnamon, allspice , nutmeg and marzipan all seem to find their way into the breezes as does a nice impression of toasted coconut and orange marmalade. The aroma of sherry is melded into the molasses, and I would not disagree very firmly with someone those who believes the nose should have been scored even higher than I have done.

In the Mouth 53/60

This is probably the most fruit filled rum I have tasted thus far with flavours of raisins, prunes and dates pouring out onto the palate. Molasses and baking spices jump out as well, and in particular the flavour of vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg seem to reach out at me. Underneath all of this flavour is some spicy orange peel, cloves, and allspice. Even further inside the rum are dollops of coffee and dark chocolate.

The sweetness and the flavour of the Pedro Ximénez sherry cask remain at the forefront as the glass breathes. In fact, I can taste the sherry so clearly that my feeling is that rather than the sherry casks acting to enhance the flavour, the sherry is at times pushing the rum aside and dominating the spirit. I like what I am tasting (a lot actually), but my feeling is that the PX Sherry and the Rum battle for my attention rather than coexisting. On some days this tastes more like a sherry, and on other days it tastes more like a rum.

In the Throat 14/15

The rum is smooth all the way down. I taste a lingering of sherry and rummy baking spices well after the glass is gone.

The Afterburn 8.5/10

The Dos Maderas 5+5 PX almost reaches the status of rum super-stardom… almost.

What is keeping the score from pushing up into the 90s is that the rum tastes just as much like a sherry as it does like a rum. In fact, if I tasted this spirit blind, it might be hard for me to decide whether I was sampling a rum or a sherry. I would probably come to the conclusion that I had received some sort of hybrid mixture.

And that, to be honest, is how I view the Dos Maderas (5+5) PX. It has its charm; it has very interesting flavour; it is even well worth the shelf price in my locale; but, after three years in a Palo Cortado sherry cask, and two more in a Pedro Ximénez sherry cask, the rum has become just a little lost and the sherry a little too dominating.

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


My Final Score is out of 100 and you may (loosely) interpret the score 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)

7 Responses to “Dos Maderas (5+5) PX”

  1. Bryano said

    I finally tried this rum yesterday and think I will really enjoy it, it’s nice and smooth and it helps to have some notes to go along with it so that I can see how the tastes would be described. I’m just curious, you say that it tastes very much like sherry (something I know very little about), what brand of sherry would you recommend to someone who enjoys the Dos Maderas? I really like the rum, and I am interested in exploring its counterpart.

  2. Josh Miller said

    Thanks for that review, Chip! I’ve been intrigued by this one given the novel ageing approach you described, but I’ve yet to taste it. I myself rather enjoy sherry once in a blue moon (as well in cocktails) so I’ll probably pick up a bottle for the collection. Cheers!

    • Cheers Josh!

      I think, based upon some of your previous comments, that you will really enjoy this one. Let me Know how it goes!


      • SeldomSeen said

        I have to agree with your review Chip,… for the time being anyways. This Rum has a fair share of fans on the Ministry as well as Forrest’s recommendation at High Times, which I took on my last field trip there. Initially, it promised to be a new member of my galley staples…… nice rich nose, full body, classy presentation etc…… but like you, something in the flavor profile just left me confused. Is this Rum or Sherry??? While many of my favorite Rums have spent some time hanging out in used Sherry casks, they haven’t lost their primary identity as a RUM. For my palate however, the Dos Maderas 5 + 5 has lost it’s RUM identity. And I can pick up a nice sherry for a lot less than the $40 the Dos Maderas set me back. But I do still find it somewhat intriguing. While it may not be an immediate staple choice for my galley, I have filled a 10 ounce bottle of it to revisit at a later date. Experience has taught me that perhaps the most consistent thing for my palate to do, is to change it’s mind.

        • Hi Seldom

          You are absolutely correct in your assessment that palates change over time, and I look forward to you letting me know if you warm up to this one. Like you have a small portion left in a small bottle to revisit later, and if my impressions change I will note it here on the website.

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