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Posts Tagged ‘Rum’

Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown #21 – Bermudez Ron Viejo Blanco

Posted by Arctic Wolf on December 4, 2016

2016rum_howler_badgeThe Ron Bermudez Company, has a long history that stretches back to 1852 with the Bermudez Distillery being the oldest commercial rum distillery in the Dominican Republic. In fact, both the company (and the distillery) are almost as old as the Dominican Republic itself, and I think it is easy to suggest that the Ron Bermudez Company represents an important part of the history of the Island. Don Erasmo Bermudez apparently created the company’s first rum, sold as Bitter Panacea, and it quickly became extremely popular providing the foundation for the company’s initial success.

bermudezronviejoAlthough the Bermudez Ron Viejo Blanco is not a typical clear white rum, the words on the bottle  ‘Viejo Blanco’ translate from Spanish to English as ‘Old White’. Unlike other white rums which may be aged a few years and then filtered clear, the Ron Viejo Blanco does not undergo a filtering process prior to bottling. Exactly how long the rum ages in oak is unclear to me, but based upon the colour of the rum in the bottle, I would guess it is aged anywhere from 3 months to a year.

Here is a link to the number 21 spirit in my Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown:

#21 – Bermudez Ron Viejo Blanco

” … The main characteristics of flavour are a firm but light oak spice, a mellow butterscotch, a hint of orange peel, dabs of cinnamon, and perhaps a smidgen of Apricot Brandy. Perhaps the apricot flavour was imagined, but I seemed to find it resting with light oak spices. When it comes to mixing cocktails, Bermudez Ron Viejo is outstanding. I ran the spirit through the gauntlet of quintessential rum cocktails. I loved the spirit served in a Cuba Libre; and when I mixed a Daiquiri and then a Mojito, I could not find fault with any of the cocktails …”

Stay tuned for more mixing rum revelations as I will be adding to this list each day until Christmas Eve.

And you can follow the rankings by bookmarking this page:

The Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown


Posted in Awards, Extras, Rum, Rum Reviews, White Rums | Tagged: , , , , , , | Comments Off on Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown #21 – Bermudez Ron Viejo Blanco

The Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown (#40 – #36)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 25, 2016

2016rum_howler_badgeAlthough I tried to compare all of the mixing rums in this countdown using similar cocktails, the truth is that occasionally I would go off the chart and construct servings which I felt suited a particular rum better than the standard cocktail for the category. This was the case with the #36 spirit, Gosling’s Black Seal. For those unfamiliar with Gosling’s, it is the standard rum for the Dark ‘n Stormy Cocktail. In fact if the serving is made with any other rum, it cannot properly be called a Dark ‘n Stormy.

Although Goslings Black Seal is a strange tasting rum which many people find difficult to mix, in the aforementioned cocktail it tastes so good, that I had to include the dark brooding rum on my list.

Along with the spirit from Goslings, here are the next 5 entries in my Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown.

SAM_0726 Cabot Tower 100 Proof#40  Cabot Tower 100 Proof Rum 

“… Cabot Tower is not a well aged dark rum, rather it is young and brash; however, it is also full of the wonderful flavours of a full strength Demerara rum. The only reason my score isn’t higher is that a large swat of treacle-like bitterness follows all that flavour, and that bitterness, not the heat and the spice, seemed just a little out of place. This is no sipper, (unless you are into self punishment); but, after trying out a few bar drinks, I discovered that all that flavour (and even that bitterness) works really well in long tall cocktails …”

Cruzan 9 Spiced Rum#39  Cruzan 9 Spiced Rum

” … I like that this spiced rum dares to be different. Not that it is revolutionary, it’s just that I am pleasantly surprised that the company chose to work on the more pungent side of the spice path just a little to the left of the more trodden slopes of vanilla and caramel. We have a little of that here, but we also have welcome doses of ginger, allspice, mace and juniper which makes the path they chose a little more challenging for the palate but also make it much more fun. I did a little mixing with cola at first, and found that I liked the spicy rum and cola combination. I also tried a recipe from the Cruzan Rum Company website, the Cruzan 9 Punch  which tasted really nice …”

Bayou Spiced and Cola SAM_1668#38  Bayou Spiced Rum 

“… As I sip, the spiciness builds, and for me the obvious way to enjoy the spirit is with a well placed ice-cube. I am not saying the rum needs an ice-cube; it does not. However for myself, the addition of the ice-cube mutes the sweetness just a tad and gives the spices more expression. I am a Rum and Cola nut; so I decide that I should also try that combination in my mixing glass with the aforementioned ice. I am hooked pretty much on the first sip, as the laid back deck drink has just enough attitude to be enjoyable without being demanding in any way …”

last-mountain-distillery-7#37  Last Mountain 306 Original Saskatchewan Rum  

” … the standard, rum and cola cocktail (Cuba Libre’) is enhanced in a big way by the firm fine oak spice within the 306 Original Saskatchewan Rum. In Canada (and throughout most of North America) cola is the standard mixer for amber rums, and the enhanced flavour provided by the oak spice is definitely a huge positive for this spirit. Adding a few bitters makes the cocktail even better …”


#36  Gosling’s Black Seal

“… I smell burnt caramel apples, intense hyacinth, and wisps of cinnamon and nutmeg. Maybe even a little allspice. At the same time the smell is earthy. It makes no sense to my nostrils to get this earthy smell but it is there in spades. (I hate to admit this; but in my imaginings I actually think of an old graveyard with freshly upturned earth, hyacinth and hibiscus on nearby graves and pungent burnt smells coming from the glass.) I find myself grabbing a bit of lime and some ginger-beer and making a strong Dark ‘n Stormy cocktail. For myself anyway, this classic Gosling’s Rum cocktail is the best way to enjoy their Dark Rum …”


Stay tuned for more mixing rum revelations as I will be adding five more rums to this list shortly.

And you can follow the rankings by bookmarking this page:

The Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown

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The Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown (#50 thru #46)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 21, 2016

2016rum_howler_badgeYesterday I began my Rum Howler Top 50 Canadian Whisky Countdown, and today I will begin my countdown of the Best Mixing Rums of 2016. During each of the past five years I have compiled a list of the Best Sipping Rums. And during each of those years, the list was dominated by premium rums whose prices were out of the reach of many of my readers. As a result, one of my readers requested that I change things up this year with a listing of the best non-premium rums.

I decided that compiling a listing of the best rums for mixing (aged less than five years) was the best way to approach this task. Of course this meant, the rums I would be analyzing and comparing would come from many different classes: White Rums, Amber and Anejo Rums, Spiced Rums, Dark Rums, and even Overproof Rums. Although these rum styles are quite dissimilar, there is one commonality that they all share. Each of these rum styles is normally enjoyed in a cocktail. Hence, my Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown.

And it is time to begin the reveal with Mixing Rums #50 thru 46:

mount_gay_rum_eclipse_silver# 50  Mount Gay Eclipse Silver

“… I made a simple daiquiri. Mixed with lime and simple syrup the Eclipse rum tasted much better (Very good!). The character of the Eclipse seemed to push through the daiquiri and made it more impressive. I will have to experiment a little more, but I can say with confidence that this rum is a very good daiquiri rum.  I had a similar experience when I made a mojito …”

blackheart-spiced-bottle-shot#49  Blackheart Spiced Rum 

“… I should note that although the rum is stated to be 93 proof, it is quite smooth. There is just a touch of astringency, but the rum is still sippable with ice. The rum works even better as a mixer bringing just enough rum and spice forward to bring a little brash attitude to your spiced rum and cola mixed drink …”

gold final#48  Tanduay Gold Asian Rum

“… I decided to add a splash of cola and some ice to the second pour. It was immediately apparent that I could easily relax with the Tanduay Gold in the evening mixed just this way. Next, I mixed the rum with some fruit juice (orange and lime) in a daiquiri style cocktail, and then I lengthened that cocktail with a splash of ginger-ale. Both variations of the mixed drink tasted very nice …”

El Dorado Dark Rum SAM_1434#47  El Dorado Superior Dark Rum 

“… For myself the rum is an obvious Rum and Cola mixer. In fact mixing 1 part rum with 2 parts of cola with a squeeze of lime juice results in a very tasty tall bar drink. I also mixed a few punch style recipes and was not disappointed in that format of cocktail either …”

Appleton VX# 46)  Appleton Estate VX Rum

“… The spicy flavours within the rum make the spirit an excellent base for many cocktails. The Appleton VX adds a really nice bite to a Rum and Coke, and the tangy oak flavour profile really adds depth to fruity cocktails like the Daiquiri …”


I hope everybody enjoys this years mixing rum countdown. You can follow the rankings by bookmarking this page which also provides some information regarding my ranking procedure:

The Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown


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Rum Howler Annual Rum Countdown (Best Mixing Rums)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 16, 2016

In addition to my Top 50 Canadian Whisky Countdown, I have been working on another special project during the year that is 2016 as I have been building, tasting and rating cocktails in secret throughout the year. As a result of these efforts, my annual 2016 Christmas Season Rum Countdown is going to be a little different from years past.


royaloakRather than building a list of the best premium rums this year, my Rum Howler year-end list will feature the very best rums (which I have tasted) which all of us love to serve in cocktails. (Those mixed drinks included the Rum Old Fashioned, the Cuba Libre, the Mojito, and the Daiquiri as well as libations specific to the class of rum I was rating.) Not only does my year-end rum list feature a completely different selection od spirits this year, it is also larger than ever with 50 spirits included for your cocktail enjoyment.

It is my intention that this list represents only those rums we love to mix. Therefore, all of the rums on this list would carry an age statement of less than 5 years. Additionally, if the rum was blended from spirit of different ages, then I used my best judgement to exclude any rum which would carry an average age of 5 or more years. Finally I also excluded any spirit which was marketed as a premium sipping rum. (Just to be clear, although these are all ‘Mixing Rums’, the truth is that many are just fine on their own as sippers giving the rum connoisseur the best of both worlds.)

As with any such list, there is always that one spirit which just missed being included. In this case it is Angostura Royal Oak Select Rum which landed in the #51 spot. And so today, as a sort of prequel to my Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rums Countdown, I thought I would re-introduce you all to this fine rum from Angostura:

#51 Mixing Rum of 2016: Angostura Royal Oak Select Rum

“… I mixed a few bar drinks in my examinations beginning with the quintessential cocktail for a young amber rum, the Cuba Libre’. I followed that up with a Rum and Ginger cocktail and then a simple Daiquiri. Although all of the cocktails tasted nice, strangely enough I preferred the daiquiri. Of course, when I referred to my original review of this rum which I wrote almost five years ago, I saw that I had come to the same conclusion …”

Please enjoy my review of the Angostura Royal Oak Select Rum, and stay tuned for my Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Mixing Rum Countdown!

The reveal begins on November 21st, Chimo!

Posted in Dark Rums, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , | Comments Off on Rum Howler Annual Rum Countdown (Best Mixing Rums)

Review: Ron Carupano Anejo

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 5, 2016

classic-sam_2858Ron Carupano Anejo Rum is produced by Destilería Carúpano, CA. This is a true  Venezuelan rum produced at Hacienda Altimira in Macarapana. According to the Ron Carupano website, Hacienda Altamira-Carúpano was established by the Spanish slave trader, Captain Felix del Fierro. (Not many rum companies are willing to recognize the common roots with the slave trade that rum possesses, and I applaud the Destilería for not obfuscating upon this matter. History should be learned from rather than forgotten.)  The Hacienda was closed in 1901, after the death of Thomas Massiani, one of the owners; however, in 1954 the Morrison family purchased the property and together with Alejandro Hernandez (owner of Industrias Pampero) created Destilería Carúpano, CA.

Ron Carupano Anejo is produced from molasses in a 3-column distillation process where distillate is rectified to 95 % alcohol by volume. After distillation, the rum is diluted with demineralized water to bring its concentration to 50% alcohol by volume. At this point the spirit is set down in white America oak barrels to age for up to 6 years.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Ron Carupano Anejo

“… The initial nose is light and clean. A light honeyed butterscotch sugar aroma along with firm fine wood spices rise into the air after I swirl my glass. Hints of orange peel and even lighter impressions of anise drift into the merry little breezes. A nice sweep of vanilla with a cinnamon accent settles itself into the air as well …”

Please enjoy my review of this Venezuelan rum which has just entered the Canadian marketplace, Chimo!

Posted in Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Review: Monymusk Classic Gold Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on October 27, 2016

classic-gold-bottle-750mlMonymusk Classic Gold Rum is produced in Jamaica by a new partnership called the National Rums of Jamaica. The spirit is produced at the Claredon Distillery (also called the Monymusk Distillery), near Lionel Town in the heart of Jamaica’s sugar cane producing region.

For those who are interested, National Rums of Jamaica (NRJ) is a partnership between three separate entities, the National Sugar Company of Jamaica (which is owned by the Jamaican Government), Goddard Enterprises (which is the parent company of the West Indies Rum Distillery in Barbados), and Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL) (the makers of El Dorado Rum in Guyana, South America). National Rums of Jamaica owns 73 % of the Claredon Distillery; the other 27 % is apparently owned by Diageo who have historic ties to Jamaica which is the original home of Captain Morgan Spiced Rum.

Monymusk Classic Gold Rum was produced from aged rum from both the modern column plant and the double-retort pot stills. This is a non age stated rum, but my best guess based upon my tasting notes, would be that it is a blend of 2 to 5-year-old rums. This new dark rum has recently been released in Ontario (distrinbuted by Woodman Wines and Spirits), and is available though regular LCBO outlets.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Monymusk Classic Gold Rum

“… The breezes bring me scents of molasses/licorice stained caramel combined with the rich aromas of Jamaican pot still rum. Orange peel, rich baking spice (vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and a touch of cloves), hints of resin-like camphor, hints of menthol, and a light but firm impression of wood spice all leap into the air giving the rum a rich and inviting nose …”

Please enjoy my review which includes a classic cocktail suggestion from the Stork Club Bar Book. Chimo!


(For those interested, I found this great article online written by Cocktail Wonk, which describes his tour of the Monymusk facility.)

Posted in Dark Rums, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off on Review: Monymusk Classic Gold Rum

Review: Seven Fathoms Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on October 20, 2016


Rum Old fashioned with Seven Fathoms

Cayman Spirits Co. began distilling spirits in 2008 at the George Town Harbour Distillery on Grand Cayman island. With a small single column still, the company uses local ingredients (including fresh cane juice from locally grown cane harvested on Grand Cayman’s East End) to produce their rum distillate in a batch style. The Seven Fathoms Rum distillate is then matured in American White oak bourbon barrels in a process that involves aging the rum seven fathoms deep under water in a secret location off the coast of the Grand Cayman island where the rolling waves rock the rum barrels in much the same way that they would be rocked in the cargo hold of a ship that was transporting the rum across the sea.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Seven Fathoms Rum

“… I notice a lovely butterscotch scent rising into the air above the glass accented by some nice dusty wood spices. I like how the two scents merge together as the glass sits which is an indication to me that the rum may be a little older than I first suspected. Vanilla and cinnamon baking spices appear as well as a nice almond scent which moves to marzipan as I am examining the glass …”

Please enjoy my review of this unique rum which includes a nice cocktail suggestion, the Rum Old Fashioned.



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Review: Captain Morgan Jack-O’ Blast Limited Edition Spiced Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on October 10, 2016

jack-oblast-sam_2843Captain Morgan Jack-O’ Blast has began to appear on store shelves throughout North America. The new spirit from Captain Morgan (apparently produced from Caribbean Rum, fresh pumpkin, cinnamon and autumnal spices) promises to deliver an insanely delicious shot. This is because the new limited edition spiced rum is (based upon the media information provided) designed to be ideal for the shot glass.

Coinciding with the release of this new pumpkin spiced rum, the Captain Morgan media team began to send samples and product information to media outlets (like The Rum Howler Blog) to write about their new spirit. Of course, I had to put it through the paces of my review system to see if it was all that Captain Morgan promised.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Captain Morgan Jack-O’ Blast

“… The aroma from the glass is very nice. I let my wife have a nice sniff, not letting her know what was inside. She immediately smiled and said my rum reminded her of her pumpkin spiced chai tea that she loves. I guess you could say that Captain Morgan nailed it! Pumpkin, caramel, and vanilla rise into the breezes accented lightly by cinnamon and cloves. The combination is wonderful and promises to be delicious prompting me to quickly steal a sip …”

Please enjoy my review of this new spiced rum from Captain Morgan.


Posted in Rum, Rum Reviews, Spiced Rum | Tagged: , , , , , | Comments Off on Review: Captain Morgan Jack-O’ Blast Limited Edition Spiced Rum

Review: Dictador Cafe 100 Month Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on October 6, 2016

Dictador Cafe SAM_2681Recently Dictador released what they call their 100 Month Series which includes four new rums all aged for 100 months. Unlike the more premium Dictador Solero Aged Rums, the 100 month series is meant to be a gateway series consisting of spirits which are meant to be embraced both as entry-level sipping rums as well as cocktail spirits.

The Dictador Cafe 100 Month Aged Rum was created to be a discerning spirit for the rum and coffee enthusiast. The base rum within the flavoured spirit is a continuous column still rum which was aged (for 100 months) in ex-bourbon oak barrels. At maturity the rum was filtered through Colombia’s most well know agricultural product, 100 % pure Arabica Coffee beans.

The final flavoured rum was then bottled at 40 % alcohol by volume.

Here is a link to my review:

Review: Dictador Cafe 100 Month Rum

“… The cafe aroma from the glass is inviting, however it masks the rum-like scents of butterscotch toffee, vanilla and baking spices (cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves). The absence of a cloying sweetness within the breezes is refreshing; however it does hint that a firm coffee-like bitterness may be present when we sip the flavoured rum …”

Please enjoy my review, and stay tuned for further reviews of some very unique flavoured rums and spirits in the coming weeks.




Posted in Flavouerd Rums, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Review: Eau Claire Gin Rummy

Posted by Arctic Wolf on October 4, 2016

gin-rummyEau Claire Distillery opened as Alberta’s first craft distillery in the summer of 2014. The facility is located 35 minutes southwest of downtown Calgary in the picturesque Hamlet of Turner Valley. The name ‘Eau Claire’ has historical significance in Alberta, meaning ‘clear water’, and is representative of the clear water from the nearby Rocky Mountains that is used as the water source of the distillery.

The folks at Eau Claire pride themselves in sourcing locally farmed ingredients, including grains and potatoes from neighbouring farms. Each ingredient is secured from suppliers who are known and respected in Alberta’s agriculture profession. Eau Claire’s Gin Rummy is an Albertan take on a classic drink which mixes the satisfying taste of both gin and rum, with winter spices added for a unique taste sensation. The spirit is hand crafted, barrel finished, and made only by Eau Claire.

Here is a link to my review of this unique spirit:

Review: Eau Claire Gin Rummy

“… The gin influence within the spirit seems to bring forward an impression of dark licorice which is almost Sambuca-like in its intensity. There are wisps of piny juniper and hints of both cardamom and coriander spice (and perhaps ginger) as well. Underlying these gin-like impressions is a lovely rum-like sweetness of butterscotch and caramel. There is also perhaps some wood spices mixed in with hints of clove and cinnamon rounding out the aroma. …”

Please enjoy my review, Chimo!


Posted in Liqueur, Liqueur Review, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , | Comments Off on Review: Eau Claire Gin Rummy

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