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CH
charlie 🇺🇸 | 0 ratings Author Posted 12 Sep '22

Hi all, I've tried a # of liquors in my life, and ultimately settled on rum as my favorite.

A partial list (and doing my best to be accurate): Ron Zacapa 23 Centenario, Vizcaya 21, Blanton's, but the rum that I eventually settled on was Kirk and Sweeney 18. I liked the 12, the 18 was better, I could tell that the 23 was more complex but the 18 tasted like butterscotch and that's what I prefer.  I've since read that Kirk and Sweeney are not what they used to be under the new naming scheme. I recently tried Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva, which was ok but a bit too sweet. I'm not sure where the Kirk 18 falls on your sweetness chart (would be interested in knowing), but I'd love to find something for ~$50 that's smooth,  no sweeter than the Kirk, and flavored more towards caramel/ vanilla/fruit/chocoloate (as opposed to oak, leather, etc).

Any thoughts would be appreciated, thanks.

TR
Rumrun11 🇺🇸 | 16 ratings Replied 12 Sep '22

If you get a chance please try el pasador del oro gran reserve. almost $50 in my area but well worth it. Smooth as can be. I would not give it a perfect 10 because for me it is just a tiny bit sweeter than what I am used to but it is well balanced. I am usually partial to rums from Barbados and I will keep trying new rums but this is really hard to beat. 

CH
charlie 🇺🇸 | 0 ratings Author Replied 13 Sep '22

Thanks Rumrun11, that looks like a good recommendation. Have you tried the XO? I wonder if the difference is similar to what I found with the Kirk 18 and 23: the less $ XO seems to be flavored more towards  butterscotch, but maybe I'll need to explore both! And I found them reasonably locally. I think I'll be taking a quick trip this week!

TR
Rumrun11 🇺🇸 | 16 ratings Replied 13 Sep '22

Hey Charlie, 

I have tried plantation XO  not sure if you are referring to that but that was also very good.  I have not yet tried Kirk & Sweeney but it is on the list for sure. I am in Pennsylvania and we may be one of the last hold outs for state run stores so the selection is atrocious. I can make it over to NJ where at least stores are privitazed.  Anyway I am not a huge fan of sweet rums and the el pasador De oro gran reserve is a little bit more than I normally like. It certainly is not a dry rum like some of the mount gay rums but it really is probably one of the smoothest rums I have had and for me there is a hint of butterscotch but nothing overwhelming. I am curious to know what you think if you try it. I also really think the real McCoy 5 year is excellent for about $20 less than the el pasador gran reserve.  Have you ever tried Diplomatico or Zafra reserve 21 year because these are also really high on my list to try. 

CH
charlie 🇺🇸 | 0 ratings Author Replied 13 Sep '22

There's an XO version of the El Pasador de Oro that also gets an 8.0 on here.  Haven't had the 21 Diplomatico but the Zafra 21 is on my list, though it sounds like it might be a bit too dry for my taste. 

I'm going to try to run out during the work day tom'w and get the Gran Reserva, looks like a good place to start.

Jimmy Cliff avatar image
Jimmy Cliff (PREMIUM) 🇺🇸 | 410 ratings Replied 14 Sep '22

I think you will really like Diplomatico Family Reserve. It's less sweet and has a lot more depth than Diplomatico Reserve. I believe it was made for European market as bottles are 70 not 75 with less sugars to meet the European rum standards. I have only found it at Total wine and currently one of my favorites at just under $50. Another exceptional rum in my opinion, especially if you like a little oak notes is Cana Fuerte from Nicaragua, possibly a Total Wine exclusive but way better than Flor de Cana around $35-$40 bottle. 

CH
charlie 🇺🇸 | 0 ratings Author Replied 14 Sep '22

Thanks Jimmy Cliff, I didn't see the Diplomatic Family reserve at Total Wine (which is where I'm headed) but I looked into the Plantation XO that Rumrun mentioned: that sounds really good (and it gets an 8.5 here). Maybe I'll get that and the El Pasador de Oro if i'm taking the 1/2 hr drive.

Thanks all for the great suggestions!

TR
Rumrun11 🇺🇸 | 16 ratings Replied 14 Sep '22

Chariie,  please let me know what you think about the el pasador de oro gran reserve once you have tried it. Or the plantation XO as well if you decided to pick that up as well.   I was not even aware of an XO version of the el pasador. I will add to my list for sure along with the Kirk & Sweeney that you mentioned. 

CH
charlie 🇺🇸 | 0 ratings Author Replied 19 Sep '22

So when I was faced with the choice of driving 30 min in the wrong direction for the Pasador Gran Reserve or picking up a bottle of Pasador XO along the route home (at a few $$ cheaper than Total Wine): I chose the latter. I haven't had a chance to really sample, but the XO certainly smells less sweet than the Diplomatico, and the impression that I got was there was maybe a floral quality, maybe honey?  After taking a quick sip of each, the XO also seemed smoother. 

cowboykidd  avatar image
cowboykidd 🇺🇸 | 10 ratings Replied 28 Sep '22

Zafra 21 is good.  I slightly prefer Plantation XO but it is good.  Zafra 30 if you have the wallet for it is really good.  My brother in law who is a bourbon fan, says Zafra is his favorite rum that I have had him try. 

On the inexpensive end, I don't mind Centenario 12.  Again for a healthy price 30 is really good.  Perhaps a little over sweet, but a good change up.  

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