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Havana Club 3-Year rum is produced from molasses and aged for 3 years in white oak barrels before filtering and bottling.
Havana Club rum is produced in Cuba, where the company was founded in 1878 by José Arechabala. The company was nationalized in 1959 after the Cuban Revolution and now jointly owned by Pernod Ricard and the Cuban government.
Easily consumable in a bind
Early 2000 Havana Club was introduced in Belgium and became quickly my favourite rum to mix with cola.
To be honest I've put it aside the last years to discover other rums, but it's always nice to come back to this solid reference as a mixing rum!
There you have it. I am not expecting much nor do I want to staple this rum. It is just that I have a Conde de Cuba 3yo waiting and since that is advertised as a rum that also can be sipped I simply wanted to be able to make a comparison. Some say this HC 3yo can only be judged as a mixer but that is nonsense in my book; every rum out there is a sipper, or it is not. I don't mix. Ever.
This is an almost white rum with a sweet nose with some fruity notes (orange peel, very light) and a vague vanilla. But most of what I get is alcohol. On the palate it all remains very light. Partly because it is so young it didn't get the chance to pick up flavours but also because I think it was designed that way (some young rums have an abundance of taste). If I didn't had the bottle to check I could have mistaken this for a light Limonnaya (citrus-vodka). Aftertaste is short with mostly alcohol, a bit of citrus and a wee, wee bit of oak and vanilla.
A tad fiery due to its age and a bit sweetened (8gpl) but all in all certainly not undrinkable.
Nothing to look out for but it has a crisp and clean taste without the rough edges of the 7yo.
To make it more fun I compared two classics. Botucal(German Diplomatico) and this 3yo Mixer. I made a Cuba libre with a coke light.
You can taste a clear difference there. It was a blind taste. Botucal libre is clearly smoother and you can taste the extra sweetness. Surprisingly good harmony with coke light! Havana libre has a fresh fruity taste but is also harsh and dry. Let's say it was good enough. But I'd prefer Botucal libre.
This is one of my favourites for mixing. I enjoy it far better then Bacardi. The taste is warm and smooth, I would not sip it but some friends do. I use it only for cocktails and then it's great.
It's a smooth rum, very smooth. With not too much burn and a slight wooden finish that makes it a very decent middle point between a gold and white rum. And, while far from perfect (that 7 could easily be a solid 6 or high 5) it might easily become a staple of your liquor cabinet.
It is actually quite drinkable neat - by no means great, but not bad either. Clearly it's mainly meant as a mixer, particularly with coke, but it does have some decent flavour and considering the price, it's a bit of a bargain.
"Havana Club 3-Year rum review by The Ultimate Rum Guide"
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