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Tasty, but not quite great
I'm generally not a big fan of American rums, but the Bayou (and also the Koloa) is one of the best.
Smells and tastes slightly sweet with sugar, spice, maple, oak, and perhaps a light hint of bourbon.
This is a nice rum that might do even better with age. The bottle doesn't say how long it's been aged, but I suspect it's still very young.
At first pour, a sipper with a small bite. After sitting for a bit, the bite is subdued and the slight astringency has disappeared. This will be a very good rum in 5 more years i think.
This rum has so much potential but falls just a tad short. The color is a deep amber. It has a bit of an edginess in aroma...stinging the nose a bit. Hints of being harsh. It initially has an interesting molasses flavor with a little vanilla but fades into a bit overly hard oak tone. The burn is a bit harsher than I like. It's a good mixing rum especially in sweeter drinks (the dry aftertaste would counter the sweet well) and does well in Coke Zero but needs to be aged several more years to raise it to sipping rum status. This rum has so much potential and I sincerely hope they have more barrels of this in reserve to bring out in several more years.
I've tried their other rums (Silver, Spiced, and Satsuma) since they are readily sold locally here in this section of Florida. The Select is not and I had to go to Louisiana to get a bottle. It's pretty good stuff but I think it would be much, much better if aged longer.
I'm usually a molasses man, but I do like to expand into sugar cane, and this is a good, inexpensive expression. Not so refined as the French ones, but to me that's not necessarily a bad thing. Burst of sweetness on the body is appealing and not so typical of cane rums, but its nice. Smooth and easy to drink. Not the greatest rum, but very drinkable AND when the price is taken into account, not bad.
I always like to have different rums on board. It gives me a break from the great ones that I have and makes me appreciate them more when I come back to them. Having said that, that's a bit negative about this rum as its more than acceptable.
There is a problem though.... the Bayou Single Barrel which is only a little more expensive.
I have long put off trying this one from Bayou since I was not at all pleased with their Spiced and Satsuma. Since I am now experimenting with Martiniquan agricoles and this one from Louisiana was on sale for $27, so I figured why not. I honestly was not expecting much when I got it home.
It starts off with 100% sugar cane juice from Louisiana and it is fermented with cane yeast. It is then distilled in copper pots before aging in American oak barrels. My bottle is from Batch 1704. Agricoles tend to pick up too much of the charred barrel taste, so lengthy aging times are not necessary. This one was wisely aged just right, but there is no age statement. My guess would be 3-4 years. Others have stated that it needs more aging, but that would indeed ruin this rhum. It has minimal vegetal and floral notes. The aroma and taste remind me of a toned down version of Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva, which is maybe why I like it. The sweetness is perfect with only an estimated 9 gpl of added sugar, which qualifies it to border on being semi-dry. This added sugar also would disqualify it in being a true rhum agricole. It also does not make a good Mai Tai.
I was pleasantly surprised to find this rum today, Bayou spiced is one of my favorite rums. I have enjoyed everything that the Bayou company has put out so far, and this one is no exception. For a little less than twice the price of the regular Bayou you get a very smooth flavorful sipping rum. I do find this one to be more of a classic rum flavor than the regular spiced Bayou, but don't let that fool you, this rum tastes better than anything else at this price point. This reminds me of a rum I bought in Costa Rica, Ron Centenario Anejo Especial. Great rum to sip on in the winter.
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