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I had this at Rumba in Seattle as at the time you couldn’t get it here in Canada. I have a bottle now. It’s very good as good or better than the 23 but has that charcoal hint to it.
It is different than the standard Ron Zacapa 23 Solera. Different enough to make it worth finding a bottle and trying.
I don't find it quite as sweet which can be a nice change.
A rum I hadn't seen before grabbed in duty free. I was a little surprised when I opened it, it wasn't appealing and I didn't like it at all. It was harsh and rough, but has since, over time grown on me. Still not my favourite or even close but I will enjoy finishing the bottle!
Après avoir testé le 23 ans j ai reçu celui-ci en cadeau.
Amateur de rhums doux et riches j ai aimé.
Je trouve que l alcool ressort un peu moins que sur le 23 ans et il est bon tout du long.
Je trouve qu il a un côté très fumé.
The nose is definitely rum. The colour is dark, red, unusual. Back to the nose... Smokey. That's weird, in a rum. But it still smells like a delicious rum. Maybe not as sweet... Smells like a Zacapa. But with smoke. What's with that?
Then on the tongue. Immediately there's the classic Zacapa taste. Caramel, oak, slight vanilla. Smooth. Then the smoke shows up. So unusual in a rum. Still some bite, but ... it begs to be inhaled. Nose in the glass. I just can't help myself. The aroma, so inviting.
I could sit an inhale the wonderful aroma of this rum all night. Except..
No I can't. I need to keep sipping it.
Such a unique rum. If the opportunity arises, you must taste this. Not the best run I've ever tasted, but it really stands out, definitely worth tracking down.
Typical Zacapa color. A smokiness tadds depth that the 23 lacks. It's smooth with a kick. A very nice balance overall.
Edit: after polishing off this bottle, rather quickly, I've come to a stronger conclusion.
It's a little smoky, but not Mezcal smoky. It's a treat down the gullet. I found this to be super smooth on the finish but with plenty of bite (ethanol) on the throat. It's an experience from
Start to finish.
Some insist it's better than the regular 23. I would agree. The price reflects that. However, some say it's better than the XO. This is false.
Score is still an 8. Really flat 8. The score is based off their practice and a lack of general uniqueness within the aged rum category.
Tried several samples at IPCPR Las Vegas, the smoke and spice work really well with a cigar...paired with a Nicaraguan Maduro late afternoon and a Nicaraguan Habano late morning; both worked well......initial sample with straight up with a lingering spice finish. MMMMMM.
Something did not sit right with me and this rum. As Zacapa XO is among my very favorites my expectations were very high. I have to say that I expected this rum to be smoother because of being aged in a charred barrel. It did have a little more body than 23 Solera, but It was not as smooth. Still good a a mixer. But at his price point, you'd do better to go with something more common.
For the most part I've liked most Zacapa products I've tried.
However; this one is totally different. Right off the bat, smoke, smoke, smoke.
At first I thought; not bad, but by the time I got near the end of my glass, the overpowering smoke flavour started to become sickening.
The smoke really masks all the other flavours and makes this one for me very one dimensional.
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