You Could Call it a Quartet. I Call it a Rum Line.
Usually my spirits posts are titled “On the Rocks” but for this one I couldn’t resist.
Ron Zacapa 23 year old Sistema Solera Rum, Guatemala
This sugar cane rum from Guatemala has a rich, buttery, nutty, toffee-like aroma. The flavor, though, is much more complex than even the nose implies with nuances and character that comes from many years exposed to wood. Those 23 years bestow upon this rum a uniquely smoky, earthy almost peated scotch-like character that melds with the bright classic rum flavors to create something new and different. A real treat.
El Dorado 12 year old, Guyana
El Dorado has a sharp, apple butter aroma to go with its smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Its flavor is much more rum-like than the Zacapa having only (Only!) aged for 12 years. El Dorado is very rich and seems as if it should be thick and viscous but manages a lightness to its mouthfeel that is refreshing. It finishes with very nice white stone fruit, honey and caramel notes.
Cruzan Single Barrel, U. S. Virgin Islands
Probably the easiest of these rums to get your hands on it pours a pale, pale straw color and smells like smoky roasted cashews and buttery toffee. The taste, however, has an herbal, almost vegetal cast that carries through to a pleasant finish that seems almost slightly salty.
Diplomatico Reserva, Venezuela
The appearance of this rum is incredible. It pours a wonderful, warm honey color that looks very inviting. The smell is also unique, a blend of caramel and cinnamon hard-candy with a nice nutty background. It is very, very smooth. The flavor starts off with a medicinal twang that mellows quiclky on the mid-palate. After that is a very rich, liquid-peanut-brittle-in-a-bottle flavor that is delicious and extends through the loooong warm finish.