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Tasty, but not quite great
I was looking for something new to try and saw the series of Porteño Solera rums from Columbia. The price point was good for a 15 year so I bought a bottle.
First nose, it smells much younger than 15 years. A Solera rum doesn't always come across as old, so no strikes there. It's a clean golden color, coats the glass well, with slow thin legs. After sitting a minute or two, the aroma softens. It does not smell sweet.
On the tongue... Soft. Then a little harsh. Sightly spicy, alcohol bite. Tastes of an unsweetened, unflavored (unaltered) rum, which is pleasant. But it also tastes like it was aged in new (previously unused) barrels, it's missing something. I don't have the taste buds to name the flavors. It's not overly complex, taste does not jump out. It's a subtle, soft, slightly biting rum. Pleasant to drink. But tastes more like an 8 year rum than a 15, it's just missing the complexity and expressiveness of an older rum. (Man that sounds pretentious! Lol)
I'm not sure if I love it. I don't dislike it, and I'm pouring another glass as soon as this one is done. I need to get a bottle of the 8 and 21 to compare.
I was excited to try this 15 year sole rate. I was expected a much smoother rum but I still enjoyed it. After the first taste you can never go back for another first impression. It interested me enough to try and find the 21 year bottle.
Tried Porteno 15y Solera rum from Colombia since its a new addition to the ABC Liquor selection. At $33 a bottle, it is suspiciously cheap for a 15y Solera rum. Jack Daniels aging has impacted the nose and palate test to be nothing but wood. Some burn at the end being such a dry rum.
More than a month ago, I found their 8 Year Solera aged rum and bought it. Today, I found the 8, 15, and 21 year solera aged rums all for sale. Thinking about the overwhelming aroma of Jack Daniels on the 8 year, I was reluctant to buy any. The 21 year was really dark and priced at around $40. Since this 15 year was only $3 more than the 8 year, I gave it a try and bought it. I emphasize Solera Aging, which all bottles specifically state.
Amazingly, there is no aroma of Jack Daniels on this 15 year solera. It is dry and naturally sweet with no added sugar. It is smooth and crisp with no bitterness or burn. The oak flavor from the barrels is kept to a minimum. At only $33 per bottle and now being relatively easy to find, this may wind up being a rum that I could grow to love even more. Fans of rums by R.L. Seale owe it to themselves to give this one a try. Heck, the 21 year solera is also affordable, so go for it.
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