Thanks so much for submitting a report. It has been emailed to the Rum Captain and will be actioned shortly.
Zaya Gran Reserva Rum is a blend of rums distilled from molasses in a five column still, the rums are aged in white oak barrels for a up to 12 years.
Zaya rum was initially distilled by Industrias Licoreras de Guatemala in Guatemala. The brand was acquired in 2008 by Infinium Spirits and is now produced in Trinidad and distilled by Angostura.
Notes of butterscotch and vanilla, but cheap candy versions predominate along with heavy clove spice flavors. It’s sweet and lacks subtlety.
Ok, but tastes better when cut with ice/water. Heavy vanilla flavor overall. Rich, but look elsewhere if vanilla notes are not your thing.
Line this up next to rums that are two to three times the price, do a blind pour, and have people you respect rank them. The Zaya will be in the running every time. I did this with Ron Zacapa XO, Appleton Estate 21, and Ron Abuelo Centuria. People picked Zaya in their top two and three. It never beat the Abuelo. The taste along with the price, elevates the rating for me.
This review is for the old formula which they have apparently changed - and unfortunately not for the better. The old formula comes in a bottle with a woven wicker sleeve, cursive writing, and a cork top. So if you find a bottle of Zaya with a wicker sleeve, get it; if it doesn’t have the wicker sleeve pass it over for now. This was my favorite rum until I tried Plantation XO. If you didn’t know any better and picked up a glass of this blindfolded you could be forgiven for thinking you were drinking a smoother more subtle version of vanilla cherry coke with a hint of oak. My only issue with it is the finish. Towards the end of a glass it leaves a slight pucker but it otherwise an outstanding rum. I have heard the new formula is not nearly as good and is overly sweet. This review is for the original formula which Zaya should return to, hopefully.
*Post edit: I tried the new variation and it is definitely sweeter but not overly so. I still find it delightful. The new variation I would rate a solid 7.9. Only slightly too sweet to be an 8 but still leagues better than most rums.
This rum is great for mixing and the price. If you like sipping rums I guess this could work but I like it with a splash of mexican coke. It has added sugars and is a bit thick but it’s a great value rum.
Pour les débutants, mais pas pour les amateurs de rhum. Facile a boire avec des arômes de vanille très prononcée. Rhum foncée assez rond et parfumé. Beaucoup trop sucré.
This is a commonly seen rum in local bars, so I decided to give a bottle a shot. I ended up using this exclusively as a mixer, and not my favorite at that. There are other rums out there for the same price which are much tastier in either situation.
The sugar cane in this is gorgeously developed, I love every sip of this. I prefer this rum neat most often than not, it is so smooth and bold with age that it should really be meant with nothing added to it.
Ratings are all over the board on this one. It really depends on your taste. Sweet cane nose. Very sweet flavor with hints of caramel and vanilla. Not terribly complex but not at all as bad as some of the ratings make it out to be. I think this is more of a middle of the road rum. Not world class but definitely not swill. Warming approaching hot. Slightly bitter finish but not unpleasent. A decent sipper if you really like it sweet and simple but it would be much better served with cocktails wanting a fuller bodied sweet rum.
Edit 9/25/19 - rating above is for old Guatemala rum. Recently tried the new Trinidad version. Not at all the same. Over sweet and artificial. No depth just sweet vanilla. Sadly this is giving rum the wrong reputation. I lower my rating for the new formula from a 6 to a 4. If you like real rum do not spend $30 on this.
Advertisement | Go Premium to remove
"Review by Chris Carlsson of Spirits Review"
"Zaya rum review by Matt at A Jigger of Blog"
"Zaya Gran Reserva rum review by The Ultimate Rum Guide"
Easily access Rumratings while on the go by adding a shortcut to your home screen. All you have to do is click the icon and then Add the RumRatings App