Thanks so much for submitting a report. It has been emailed to the Rum Captain and will be actioned shortly.
Excellent flavour, pairs very nice with cane cola. Smooth with subtle notes of Carmel and vanilla. Smooth finish as well. Reminds me a bit of the original smoothness of the first Zaya, before the distillery moved, but something else I can’t put my finger on yet...more testing required!
This is a very nice rum, good carmel toffee aromas. A go to for me now.
First, I'm fairly liberal. I figure I'm not the final word when it comes to judging what others will like. But the Zaya Grande Reserva 16 Year deserves to be called out. First, make sure it's the new green necked/labeled iteration that we are talking about and second, it's NOT A 16 YEAR OLD RUM! It is a solera rum. They are being quite cute by putting the "16 Years" in a much larger font than the tiny print of the warning, "A blend of Rums aged up to".
It seems that the move from Guatemala has resulted in a continued loss of positive character in this sad Rum.
Don't get me wrong. I agree, a solera rum can definitely be a good rum. But it's insulting to other correctly labeled rums to hide behind a tricky label.
That said, the Zaya Grande Reserva I tasted was sickly sweet and overpriced even for $26. But, if you are someone who mixes all the flavors at the Slurpee machine and would pay $26 for that, I apologize.
The older version (Zaya 12) was a sugar bomb too, but this one is even sweeter. Like liquid candy.
I jumped on it because of a significant price reduction... now I know why.
Very sweet, easy to drink and good value at under $30
Zaya Grande Reserva 16 year old rum is a great starter rum for your rum collection. Reasonably priced at $28 per bottle and now easily available in most liquor stores. Original Zaya 12y was pretty good, but now the new version struggles to earn a 7 since it's very overpowering sweet flavor profile. Zaya 16y is definitely on the sweeter side also, plenty of vanilla and butterscotch for sure but it has a very nice flavor profile and hardly any burn. Buy this bottle and compare it to Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva, and the massive difference is obvious. Then go to your liquor and buy Diplomatico going onwards.
Saw this in my local liqour store and the green label stood out on the Zaya bottle. 16 yr??? Decided to give it a try. I am very impressed. A lot of forward apple and vanilla flavors. Very complex profile. It is a 16yr blend, but this is a very nice, smooth rum that is great on the rocks. The finish is not as long and strong as the Zaya 12 yr, which is my favorite characteristic of the Zaya 12 yr. But this one is also much smoother... practically no burn. The finish is still relatively long and the apple and vanilla flavors linger. Overall at $23 USD (in Miami) this is a great value. I'll be buying more.
I fell for this sweet rum and bought a whole bottle rather than one ounce at a bar as I did for their Zaya 12. I would say that it still has somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 gpl of added sugar and no telling what else. It comes off as being so fake, but it is still drinkable and not quite disgusting. Aging in the bottle may change my perception and sweet rums are notorious for deteriorating in the bottle after only a few weeks.
So my first review of Zaya 12 was back in 2015, when I felt like I discovered heaven. Great flavor of molasses, caramel, chocolate, vanilla.....all of the flavors I love to discover in a great rum, plus a little honey flavor. Great bottle, little Brother to Zacapa 23, and $31 a bottle at that time. Then, corporate greed set in around 2017, and the mix was cheapened along with the bottle. The mix gotten considerably younger and more harsh, less refined for sure. My favorite Go To was gone. Now, after all of the harsh consumer reciews blasting the Company for their greed and stupidity of F-ing up a great thing, the mix and bottle design has changed again, but for the better. I think that this is the 4th or 5th receipt change through Zaya's history. But, it is not a 16 year old rum. Where as the 2015 Zaya was a 12 year blend, suggesting that the youngest rum blended was 12 years old and could be 15, 18 or 20 years or more, and the 2017 edition was up to 12 years with numerous blended rums (cheaper!!!!), the new and improved 2019 edition, Zaya 16, suggests that multiple rums are blended up to 16 years old. What a difference when you compare the taste of the 2017 12, versus the 2019 16 year. MASSIVE IMPROVEMENT In blend and flavor. Vanilla, Molasses, Caramel and Honey flavors have returned. Maybe not as aged as the original 2015 edition I discovered, but pretty damn close, for sure. Try it neat, with a cube or even mixed with a Diet Coke if you like. And maybe too sweet for some folks, but I really like this Zaya 16. And I have seen prices in the $29 range, so a great but for a solid rum under $30. Zacapa 23 at $45 is also a great rum I enjoy from time to time, and again, the same Owners of Zacapa and Zaya. Guys, go pick up a bottle of Zaya 16 and enjoy. Cheers!!!!!
A smooth and sweer tasting rum. Hints of vanilla. I liked it.
This bottle is very will priced. Strong & sweet notes of vanilla.
A smooth tasting rum. There is a strong vanilla taste with a peppery finish. It’s a bit sweeter but not overly done. A quality sipping rum.
Very nice nose with a good body. Close to being a sipper but shines as a mixer with the right level of sweetness. This is not a rum that is sweet with that heavy aftertaste, it adds to the drink and I look forward to trying it in the blender. This is not for you if all you want is a dry sipper more like a whiskey, this is for the occasional sweet tooth
Similar to 12 years old... Definitely vanilla taste...with spice...rich and little bit oily.
It's very good, but it tastes and smells like cognac, not like rum.
A very decent rum especially given the low price but it's not quite great. Sweeter than many rums with clear vanilla notes.
My liquor store has been out of the Zaya 12-year for about a month as have other stores around town so when I first saw the bottle with the different label I didn't even think to look at the age. I just thought that Patron was relabeling.
Actually, on first sip, I was a bit upset. I thought that my beloved Zaya had done a switcheroo and changed the recipe on me, just like they did with Pyrat Rum, originally from the Island of Anguilla in the British West Indies. Now, who knows?
I immediately noticed that the finish was not as long as before, the viscosity was thinner and the caramel/vanilla flavors were a bit more pronounced. But like any good soldier, I plowed forward and moved neatly into the Zaya 12-year groove that I know and love. Once I looked at the bottle and understood the age of what I was drinking, my faith in all things right in this world, was quickly restored.
I always drink my Zaya strait accompanied by a well-aged Cuban cigar and a good book. Duration: 2+ hours, at least 2-3 times a week. I drink Zaya exclusively when I smoke cigars and would love to discover something else just as tasty, different or better.