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Barbancourt 5 Star Reserve Especiale 8-Year Rum is agricultural, meaning it's produced from fermented sugar cane juice rather than the more typical molasses. The sugar cane juice is double distilled and aged for eight years in Limousin oak barrels.
Dupré Barbancourt created the Barbancourt rum recipe in 1862 in Haiti, where the rum is still produced today. A French national, Barbancourt incorporated traditional French methods including double-distillation in the process.
Tasty, but not quite great
Excellent on all fronts for sub $30. Bottled at 43% which makes it a great sipper. If I were to fault it I would say it's a bit generic and lacking a wow factor. But really it's far to good and enjoyable at it's price point to care about such a minor and petty thing.
It’s also an all around brown rum substitute. It can be perfectly used in any drink that calls out for brown rum.
I don't know about how it is where you live, but these agricoles are pricey where I am. Damn, those French have got it made. Well, Haitians actually in this case (a former French colony). Thus, I am inclined to judge this rum more harshly than I might otherwise, given four of my favorite rums are at this price-point locally.
Having been a cognac drinker, one can easily ascertain the link to the rhum agricole variant of rum production. Once you understand the (well-defined) production process, you know what flavors you're going to get. And you get them here. On those merits, one can see why this rum is so popular among agricole drinkers.
Still, to my taste, this agricole did not significantly stand apart from the 5 Year Clement I'd tasted previously (and at the same price-point) - a modest VSOP to the Clement's refined VS (to use cognac terms). A bit smoother, a bit more of those hearty cognac flavors, sure.
But once again, I prefer the molasses-based rums (exception: St Lucia's Chairman's Reserve, made of raw sugar cane but *not* the agricole process).
Great as a mix to broaden the flavour range with a English or Spanish style. Sweet sugar and then grass.
I really like barbancourt's nose. It tells of much more years than 8. The taste is sweet at first, then highly fluctous grassy and finally deep tobacco and coffee. I really like this one. However it is a little bit too strong on the alcoholic odor.
A little light for an aged rum, but it makes up for it in flavor. Nice amount of spice and sweetness, and just a hint of that rhum agricole funk. Highly recommended, and used often for tiki mixing.
Tropical drinks requiring dark rum - use Rhum Barbancourt 5 Star. Mixed drinks gain a quality flavor over some of the other rums used in mixed drinks; no nail polish remover undertone to it. This rhum also works good on its own over a big rock of ice
I keep this one on my mixing shelf.
I find Barbancourt special, it`s less grassy than regular agricoles and it´s still a cane juice rum. The honey-like but sort of dry flavor is great to mix drinks with, the 15 yo is much better though.
"Barbancourt 5 Star rum review by the Ultimate Rum Guide"
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