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Relaunch Dictador 12 and 20 + new Master Editions


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vomi1011

Posted 18 Nov '20 from Germany with 239 ratings

Have someone already tasted the new edition of Dictador 20?
Solera is canceled and the rum is matured for full 20 years.
This site is in German, maybe you can translate it.
https://www.spirituosen-journal.de/relaunch-verkuendet-dictador-streicht-solera-verfahren-und-erneuert-look-81535/
We will see also some new master editions soon. Only 350 bottles of each, I think they will be very expensive.
https://www.spirituosen-journal.de/neue-kooperationen-dictador-rum-praesentiert-zweite-2-masters-series-86791/

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Paul B (PREMIUM)

From United States with 347 ratings Replied 19 Nov '20

vomi1011:

Thanks for the info, which really saddens me. Their solera rums have been consistent year after year and these two are both in my top 1 percent of all 346 rums that I have rated. Moving to actual age statements will only increase the price while decreasing the likelihood of consistency.

As for the Two Masters series, they start at more than $800 US and go all the way up to almost $2000 US. The prices can be found on their home page under Shop. Those are definitely out of my league as I still restrict myself to $120 US maximum per bottle.

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vomi1011

From Germany with 239 ratings Replied 19 Nov '20

Yes, I think they want to go into the premium market with these two bottlings, where they can get higher prices. That also means a price increase for Insolent and Prepetual.
I'd say it's time to buy some bottles.

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kudzey

From Poland with 11 ratings Replied 19 Nov '20

Right, there is no "solera system reserve" text but the price didn't change when i bought it the last time. I compared the prices from online shops in Poland, it seems that they didn't notice the difference. Did the price increase in your countries?

It is a typical Dictador dessert rum, dominated by coffee and chocolate. I didn't taste it back-to-back with the solera one but I think the new release is less sweet.

Are the XOs solera rums, by the way?

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Paul B (PREMIUM)

From United States with 347 ratings Replied 19 Nov '20

vomi1011 & kudzey:

These updated versions have not yet arrived into my neck of the woods, so absolutely I must stock up on the soleras before they are all gone.

The company sells coffee and uses the wooden barrels to hold the beans. They also use the coffee barrels along with aquardiente barrels to age these rums, which explains the sweet coffee notes without having any added sugar.

On the XO series, they remove the rum from the barrels at about halfway through the aging process and then char the same barrels again before pouring the rum back in. This extra step is what puts their XO series over the top and also jacks up the price. The suggested retail price of any XO is $105 US, but I often find them on clearance for $80. Why so low? No one likes the sticky paint that they use on the XO bottles and having to wrap a napkin around the neck to be able to grab the bottle. The XO series are fantastic rums in terrible bottles.

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vomi1011

From Germany with 239 ratings Replied 19 Nov '20

@kudzey
Your bottle has the old bottle design with the new rum inside. I think they will adjust the price when they introduce the new bottle design.
Here we go:
https://www.ebay.de/itm/Dictador-Rum-20-Jahre-Icon-Reserve-aus-Kolumbien-40-Vol-0-7-L/133554251263
The old Dictador XO Perpetual was solera. The newest one is not.
But there was also a new bottle design with solera on it.
I got the new bottle without even realizing it. That's why I didn't get the same impression.

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vomi1011

From Germany with 239 ratings Replied 19 Nov '20

There was probably a transition period like now with the 20y.
This is the newest one without solera on the bottle:

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Andy (PREMIUM)

From United Kingdom with 146 ratings Replied 21 Nov '20

It feels like there are some solera folks who are seriously anti-solera. (‘solera snobs’?) Have you seen this as well? I think they’re generally against producers claiming ‘up to 20 years’ when in fact it might only be a few drops at that age. But I rarely see anyone discussing the actual taste of soleras.

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Paul B (PREMIUM)

From United States with 347 ratings Replied 21 Nov '20

Andy:

Your first sentence is quite confusing. Maybe replace "solera folks" with "rum folks". I absolutely agree with your last sentence. As for me, as long as solera rums are done very well in the manner that Dictador has done, I am all for them.

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kudzey

From Poland with 11 ratings Replied 21 Nov '20

The rum business would be just better if the composition of every vintage was stated clearly. I heard somewhere that Abuelo mixes their soleras in equal parts of all vintages but the rest of the brands are a mystery.

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vomi1011

From Germany with 239 ratings Replied 22 Nov '20

Solera is not a traditional way to produce rum, many do not understand that an age cannot be given using this method.
Most of the numbers on the label are interpreted as age statement. But they are not, or not anymore.
As an an example the number 23 on the Zacapa bottle is not an age statement.
There is no Anos or "23 years old" on the bottle anymore.
An tropical aged rum with 23 years would develop heavy flavors and tastes very intensive or strong. It would be the complete opposite of what people expect.
A rum that has matured for such a long time doesn't just turn out mild. Some don't understand this even after more than 1000 rums. Then that's just ignorance.

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Paul B (PREMIUM)

From United States with 347 ratings Replied 22 Nov '20

From my days of trying different sherries decades ago, I was pleased to find the solera system being used to produce rums from the Spanish speaking Caribbean. This was a way to guarantee consistency while keeping the price down. Dictador is one of the more truthful companies when it comes to labeling their bottles. Zacapa happens to be the most dishonest and sneaky in their labeling. I knew this when I bought my only bottle of their "23" about three years ago. I chose to forget the lies on the bottle and rate it for how it tastes. It started out just okay and then tumbled down to my rating of a 5 due to it having 44 gpl of added sugar. I refuse to buy that one ever again.

Many new rum drinkers come from a whiskey or single malt scotch background. They are accustomed to seeing numbers on bottles as being the actual age and this is true. Then they get to solera rums and buy based upon the number on the bottle without reading the fine print. First off, eight years is optimum aging for rums in tropical climates. Single malt scotches take much longer to reach optimum aging because of the colder climate. Knowing this, any spirit aged beyond it's optimum level of years often deteriorates the taste while adding snob appeal from jacked up prices. Those that rave about rums aged beyond their optimum level probably do not want to admit that they paid way too much for it. Granted, there are a few exceptions to this rule and it is up to us reviewers to differentiate between the really good rums aged longer than 8 years and the ones that are only created to get our money.

One example from me is the Flor de Cana 12 Year as their optimum aging. Their 18 year was a failure for me and I did not dare waste money to try their 25 year. Aging at higher altitudes certainly allows for more than 8 years as optimum aging for tropical rums.

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kudzey

From Poland with 11 ratings Replied 22 Nov '20

Paul B,
Let me disagree with one of your points. There are rums aged over 8 years which are considered excellent by many revievers. These are for example premium cask strength rums like Skeldon (aged 27 or 32 years in tropical climate) or Caroni. Appleton old rums (21, 25,30,50 years in the barrel) also score good ratings. You mentioned Dictador, they also produce their "best of" series (I think these are not soleras but not 100% sure), aged around 40years.

On the other hand, I respect solera system rums, this is just anotgee type of spirit and should be thought of in different categories. Of course, as long as the brands remain honest and don't use cheap tricks. I got my Zacapa 23 as a gift, my friend saw it at the shop and it was relatively expensive, my girlfriend adds it to desserts and cakes like tiramisu or brownie, works completely fine there.

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