It’s that time of the year again, folks. Some love it, some dread it. We’re neither here or there. But easily swayed should our lovely readers decide to bless us with one of these which would of course make it a very merry christmas indeed.
We know it can be hard to decide on christmas presents. There’s just so many “what-if’s” and “but’s” and “maybe’s” these days. So many wonderful gifts to choose from. And let’s not forget something here. We as human beings have evolved. We’re no longer happy with any old ale from yonder offy’s shelf. We’re more refined. We want the best ale there ever has been. So, what do you do when writing your christmas list to Santa? or when you’re shopping for that all-important gift to put you in the good books of your girlfriends dad? You turn to your friends over at Cut The Cap of course. We’ve all been there. We’ve made the mistakes of what not to get. We’ve spent years of fine-tuning our christmas shopping and here’s the first part of our gift to you; The Christmas Gift Guide: Rums.
Had a ‘Meet The Parents’ moment last time round to your girlfriends mum and dad’s house? Here’s 3 bottles that’ll warm even Jack Byrnes’ heart.
1 – Appleton Estate 50 Year Old Jamaica Independence Reserve – Expect to pay around: £3,500
What could be more special than a rum as old as a nation? Apart from the fact the Apple Estate 50 Year is a piece of history, it also tastes great too with a powerful oak bouquet infused with rich vanilla, layered in cinnamon, maple and orange peel finishing in a smooth honeyed oak to really pay off that investment of blending rums with a MINIMUM age of 50 years. This is not for the now-and-then occasional rum drinker. This is the bottle that all aficionado’s will want. Oh! And it’s a limited release of just 800 bottles so get yours quick!!
2 – Havana Club Maximo – Expect to pay around: £1,200.00
The premium rum that introduced us to premium rums as a whole, here at Cut The Cap. Havana Club have long been one of the finer rum companies with a great reputation and the Maximo does nothing to hurt that. Not only is the Maximo undoubtedly one of the finest rums EVER MADE (Epic!), it comes from the promised land…Cuba…so we’re sure it’ll go great with a full-bodied cigar. A well-balanced nose of oak, pear, coconut and dried fruit with a palate accenting the woody notes, cocoa, and fruits.
3 – Rhum St. Barths Authentique – Expect to pay around: TBC
Which rum collection would be complete without one of the hottest new rum companies in the world? Rhum St. Barths Authentique is one of the smoothest rhum agricole’s we’ve ever had the pleasure of tasting and and with the passion of it’s owner (former Manchester United and Arsenal footballer Mikael Silvestre) for rum, we can see how Rhum St. Barths has grown in to one of the finer brands today. Enjoy this rhum agricole neat, and you will love the long-lasting finish smoky finish which is preceded by a vanilla, cherry and liquorice taste on the palate.
While slightly less expensive than our top-end selection, the mid-range are still not for the newbie rum drinker. Some of the finest and more affordable rums sit in this category which any rum aficionado would be proud to own. Created by only the best in the industry, here’s our favourite 3;
1 – Havana Club 15 Year Old – Expect to pay around: £120.00
One of our all-time favourites since we began our journey into the world of fine rums, the Havana Club 15 Year Old is not just any rum. It’s 15 years of maturing, blending, and carefully creating a delightfully smooth, rich and fruity palate which finishes off with a beautiful brown sugar and spice finale.
2 – Diplomatico Ambassador – Expect to pay around: £200.00
There’s something quite fitting about talking about a ‘flagship’ product when discussing the drinks of the new world. And the Diplomatico Ambassador is a fine rum to mention it with. The flagship of the Diplomatico brand, the Ambassador is created by Golden Barrel Awards Master Rum Blender of the Year 2011 winner Tito Cordero. What sets this rum apart is the maturation in bourbon barrels followed by 2 years in Pedro Ximenez casks giving it a refreshingly sweet finish.
3 – Ron Zacapa XO Centenario Solera Gran Reserva Especial – Expect to pay around £90.00
The Ron Zacapa XO is as great as the name is long. With not one, but TWO awards in its year of release, this beauty is not only one of the best extra old rums, it also brings to the table that sweet characteristic of most Ron Zacapa rums coupled with toffee, spice, tobacco and woody notes.
Our go-to bottles. Here lies some of the best, yet more affordable bottles that you should never look down upon. A rum for the everyman.
1 – Ron Zacapa Centenario 23 Year Old – Expect to pay around: £50
This, dear friends, is OUR personal favourite. For a relatively low price, the Ron Zacapa SS23 is pound for pound (literally) one of the greatest rums we have ever tried. It’s the reasons we love Fridays…and Saturdays…and Sunday afternoons in the man-cave with a nice full-bodied cigar. While some of the more expensive rums are great to drink on occasion when you can justify the cost, usually we require a rum with a more palatable price tag, and no compromise on quality. This is that rum. A rum that really brings out that caramel goodness from the sugar cane from whence it came with cocoa and oak for good measure and just a hint of spice.
2 – Elements 8 Platinum – Expect to pay around: £30
Ok, so we’ll admit that one of the reasons the Elements 8 Platinum is on here is because it just looks so sexy in any amateur mixologists bar. But that’s not the only reason. It’s also one of the smoother silver rums we’ve had the pleasure of trying and is fantastic in cocktails which means it can be enjoyed by more than just the rum-lover.
3 – Havana Club Añejo Blanco – Expect to pay around: £17
Yes, Havana Club makes it in to ALL THREE of our categories but who can blame us? One of the all-time favourite rum brands with those serious about rum. The Anejo Blanco is perfect for mixing with cola and lime (Cuba Libre, anyone?) or just about any other soft drink. And at 17 quid a pop you just can’t go wrong.
And that’s it from us for the rums, folks. Stay tuned as we have further gift guides to follow in the weeks leading up to christmas. Just 4 weeks left! Blimey!