Best rum 2021: spicy tropical drinks, black and white

Rum remains a misunderstood and underused spirit in Britain. Many drinkers still associate it with inexpensive cocktails on teenage nights or sugary, sickly holiday drinks.

On the other end of the spectrum, rum is still being overlooked as a sipping drink in favor of cognac, whiskey or brandy. Rare are those who think of uncorking a rum for a nightcap. Yet connoisseurs know that when rum is made well, few drinks can match it in depth, variety, or sweetness.

Rum combines the depth and sophistication of whiskey with the glamor and history of the Caribbean: it’s a drink of pirates, admirals and revolutionaries, reggae and reggaeton. In addition, in recent years the market has grown considerably, with thousands of artisanal distilleries offering innovative rums from all over the world. But with more choices than ever, which one is better?

How we tested

Rum cocktails are always the cornerstone of every drinker’s arsenal, so from daiquiris to dark and stormies, we’ve tried rums as the basis for countless iconic drinks. There’s a rum for every palate and a rum for every rum drink, so we’ve evaluated the best rums for every situation, at a price range, so you can make sure you never get an offer. of rum. Hi!

The best rums for 2021 are:

  • Best overall – Ron Zacapa 23: £ 54.95,
  • Best all-rounder – Havana Club anejo especial: £ 16,
  • Best cheap rum – Aldi old dark hopped rum: £ 9.99
  • Best for a daiquiri – Equiano rum: £ 39.90,
  • Best spiced rum – Dead Man’s Fingers Spiced Rum: £ 18,
  • Best Budget Spiced Rum – Aldi black cassario spiced with rum: £ 14.99,
  • Ideal for a former – Diplomatico Rum: £ 35.99,
  • Ideal for mojitos – Flor de Cana 4: £ 22.95,
  • Best rum for entertainment – Superior Bacardi, Carta Blanca: £ 13,
  • Ideal for rum punch – Mount Gay Eclipse: £ 18,

Ron Zacapa 23

Better: Globally

Evaluation: 9/10

This glorious aged rum, now distributed by Diageo, has won several big awards, and now it’s our best buy too. Originally from Guatemala in Central America, the “23” refers to the age of some of the rums that are blended to make each bottle. It’s a rich, smooth and full-bodied rum with deep flavors of vanilla, citrus and chocolate that is winning a place in every beverage cabinet.

Havana Club special

Better: Versatile

Evaluation: 8/10

Every rum cabinet needs something from Cuba, and Havana Club is the iconic Cuban rum brand. For refined tasting there are more aged versions, but for a mild, widely available dark rum that tastes great on its own or as a cocktail base – try a dark and stormy or a Cuba libre – this classic is hard to beat.

Old hop rum Aldi

Better: Economic rum

Evaluation: 7/10

Once again, German supermarkets dominate when it comes to the value option. Aldi Old Hopped Rum is an expert blend of vanilla, caramel and coffee, to drink alone or in cocktails, and available at a price that allows you to make toddy for all of the ship’s company.

Equiano rum

Better: For a daiquiri

Evaluation: 9/10

Named after abolitionist Olaudah Equiano, this Afro-Caribbean crossover is a blend of liquids from Barbados and Mauritius, united in bourbon barrels. Its chocolate and oak flavors add depth to the classic Cuban rum cocktail. Hemingway would approve. Plus, five percent of the proceeds go to equality charities around the world, so you can relax with a clear conscience.

Dead Man’s Fingers Spiced Rum

Better: Spiced rum

Evaluation: 7/10

Spiced rum has traditionally been the poor cousin of good things, with spices used to mask the inferior flavor, but that isn’t necessarily the case. Drawing inspiration from the history of Cornish smugglers and pirates, Dead Man’s Fingers – made by the owners of a seafood shack in St Ives – blends Caribbean rums to create a range of powerfully flavored rums. This spicy version has notes of vanilla, citrus, spice, nutmeg and vanilla. Enjoy it on its own or as a base for frozen cocktails with lots of fresh lime.

Aldi black cassario spiced with rum

Better: Spiced rum at a low price

Evaluation: 7/10

Aldi Spiced Rums have won numerous awards, providing exceptional value. While not a pure rum, it is a rum-based drink with a similar richness of vanilla, spice, citrus, and coffee flavors. At just £ 14.99, it offers a superior experience for a fraction of the cost of other premium drinks.

Diplomatic Rum

Better: For a former

Evaluation: 9/10

Hailing from Venezuela, Diplomatico is a favorite among rum connoisseurs. It has a delicious sweetness and lightness, which means that while Old Fashioneds are traditionally made with bourbon – or even gin – Diplomatico works wonders.

Flor de Cana 4 extra seco

Better: For the mojitos

Evaluation: 8/10

This clear, dry rum is the perfect base for one of the quintessential rum cocktails, the mojito, with enough pizzazz to add depth to the flavors under the drink’s sugar, lime and mint notes. Alternatively, it pairs perfectly with other mixers. The spirit of summer, in a bottle.

Higher Bacardi, Carta Blanca

Better: Rum for entertainment

Evaluation: 7/10

Despite all of this, there are dozens of small, artisan rum producers out there, sometimes you don’t have to be fancy to have a good time. When you need to spice up a house party, Bacardi is the classic base for a daiquiri, mojito, or other cocktails, with a clear, smooth flavor.

Mount Gay eclipse

Better: For the rum punch

Evaluation: 8/10

No rum list would be complete without an appearance from Mount Gay, and what better expression of classic Barbados rum than a classic rum punch? As the old recipe says: one sour (lime juice), two sweet (sugar syrup), three strong (rum), four weak (water). Add a pinch of angostura bitters and nutmeg to taste and you can be on a Caribbean vacation in minutes. Remember, your salon is still on the green list.

The verdict: rums

Everyone should have a good rum at home, something cooler than whiskey or brandy to offer after dinner. Tastes will vary as much as they do with other spirits. It’s not the cheapest rum on the market, but Ron Zacapa 23 ticks all the boxes, a dark, deep and balanced drink that will convert even the most avid rum refusniks.

For a classic mid-range dark rum, look no further than Havana Club anejo especial, sweet enough to drink on its own, but not so sophisticated you’ll feel guilty mixing it up. At the other end of the market, Aldi pursues the concern of low-cost German supermarkets for high-value drinks. Their wines and whiskeys regularly win awards against rums twice the price, and rum is no exception.

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IndyBest product reviews are unbiased, independent advice you can trust. On some occasions we earn income if you click the links and purchase the products, but we never allow this to distort our coverage. Reviews are compiled through a mix of expert opinion and real-world testing.

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About Larry Struck

Larry Struck

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