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Old 12-30-2009, 07:39 AM   #1
Aphelion
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Default Advice on buying my frist rhum agricole

Hello all. I recently had my 21st this spring. My experience with rum can be summed up with; Mount Gay Ecplipse. I found that dissapointing, as well as countless other spirits. As opposed to light and refreshing, I simply had trouble finding any taste to enjoy. I can say the same for the few scotches and whiskeys I've tried. Too boozy and not enough malt flavors! I discovered and become enamored with rhum agricole after reading about them in the December 06' Saveur magazine. I'm hoping sugar cane rum is going change my mind about never finding a spirit I will enjoy!

I'm wondering if my assumption that I'd enjoy a darker rum is correct? I'm looking for a sugar cane rum with the richest, fullest flavors. After my bad experiences with old scotch, I dislike anything too boozy or firey. I've done enough review reading that I could name you almost all the Martinique distillers off my head, but I'd like to hear your opinions first hand on what might be the perfect first rum agricole for me. I perfer sweeter, full bodied spirits.

Ironicaly, I received Depaz's Blue Cane Amber rhum for Christmas. I'm sure some of you would be thrilled to recieve that.. it sounds wonderful, but I'm going to be an ungratefull ba**ard and assume I will not like it because it is light. I was told that I may take it back.. and it was 40 dollars. I'd like to assume you could buy a much darker full bodied rhum for that much? So what are your recommendations and how much will they set me back?

To recap.. I like something on the sweeter side, full bodied, rich, and flavorful. Not too boozy or hot. Something at 40 dollars would be nice, but I know we aren't talking about muppets here and I'll be willing to pay a few dozen more for the right rhum!

Also, not to be picky, but I'd like to know whats going to have more sugar cane flavors(and other flavors) as opposed to just overwhelming oakiness. Oak is good, but I'd like to taste more then just dust and wood if its going to be an older (vintage) rhum. Thanks for helping a neophyte out!

Edit: Better yet... as another consideration, why not try and prove my experiences wrong? Show me a blanc that is full of flavors and blows a boozy whiskey out of the water!

Last edited by Aphelion; 12-30-2009 at 10:32 AM.
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Old 12-30-2009, 11:22 AM   #2
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Welcome to the forums Aphelion. Judging from your introduction, if you're relatively new to drinking distilled spirits and you don't like single malts and other oaky spirits and you're looking for a sweet, sugar cane flavor spirit I'm fairly confident you're going to be disappointed with almost anything you find from Martinique. No, I'd bet you won't like rhum agricole vieux. Smoky oak is part of the signature flavor of rhum agricole vieux.

Just because a rhum is made from sugar cane juice doesn't mean it is going to be sweet. On the other hand, if you mix a good rhum agricole with sugar cane syrup and a bit of lime in a ti punch you might find you like the drink as it can be sweet, without a fiery alcohol taste but at 100 proof, rhum agricole is a strong drink.

If I lived in Baltimore, I'd plan a trip down to DC and go to Proof and ask Adam, or Passenger and ask Derek, to make me a 'ti punch a little on the sweet side. To spend $40 for a bottle of rhum that you probably aren't going to like seems silly to me.

I'm glad you have taken the time to read as much as you can about rhum agricole from Martinique but sometimes you just have to taste it. I've yet to meet the writer that has captured the essence of rhum agricole in a few paragraphs. I quit trying about 15 years ago.
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Old 12-30-2009, 11:40 AM   #3
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thats a tall order my friend. Im gonna say Neisson Blanc. Try it in a ti punch 1st (little sugar cane syrup, little piece of lime, 1-2oz rhum, then I usually add one big ice cube and swirl it around a rocks glass), if that doesn't go then try a planteur punch.
As for the tastes. I know that 21years is the last hurdle but...I am convinced that taste buds are the last thing to develop and even fully mature well after we are loosing our hair I know that up until the last couple of years I a) never drank booze neat b) never ate olives c) never liked mustard. Theres a ton more I use to never like, but guess what, it changed. How this applies to you is this, your tastes in alcohol will change. You might start of liking a medium sweet mount gay in cola, to liking less cola, then move to a grog, then to sipping straight. Just enjoy the drink in your glass and the journey. For the record I still don't like wiskey or scotch.
The neisson blanc in a ti punch reminds me a little bit like a margarita but without the annoying salt. Just sour, sweet, with good floral vegetal notes. I'd stay away from the vieux agricoles, they seem to be drier and smokier than what you'd like.
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Old 12-30-2009, 12:16 PM   #4
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As former posters Ed and Ron has already said maybe rhum agricole might not be it for you(at the moment). I would go for one of the sweeter rums instead.

Try Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva, really sweet in a good way!
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Old 12-30-2009, 12:22 PM   #5
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I agree with joergen. I would add Zacapa Gran Reserva and Pampero Aniversario to the list of molasses based rums that may fit Aphelion's flavor profile.
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Old 12-30-2009, 01:39 PM   #6
Aphelion
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Well this is a bit embarresing, guess it is immature of me to think something I never tried before is going to be the magical ticket... but I'm not giving up yet. I don't mean to curse spirits entirely. When I mention sweetness, I'm thinking of Maker's Mark. Its not sweet like an ameretto, but its sure as not bone dry. Jameson's is a drink I could pour myself often and enjoy very much (and I do). And if there's a whiskey I find as smooth and caramelly "sweet" (if simple) as Jamesons, I'd be just as sure theres a rum I'd like . Just of matter of knowing what to start with... I suppose then I ought to go back to considering an entry level molasses rum?
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Old 12-30-2009, 02:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aphelion View Post
I suppose then I ought to go back to considering an entry level molasses rum?
Well, that would be a good start, but let's consider what an entry level molasses rum would be.

For many Captain Morgan would be entry level, after all it is one of the best selling rums in the world. Bacardi might also fit the bill, depending on your perspective of entry level. Their Bacardi 8 may be a little drier than you are looking for. (I would describe the old rhum agricole as definitely the driest of the rums.)

I don't drink a lot of Jameson except when I'm with some of my Pernod friends, but I think I understand what you are looking for in the vanilla sweetness that is found in some whisky - which coincidentally comes from a combination of the mash bill and the oak barrels used to age the spirit.

Rum Runner's suggestion of Zacapa is a good one as is joergen's suggestion of Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva. Both of these rums have a natural sweet component and both have other characteristics shared by other rums.

I'm confident that by the end of the day other forum members will share other ideas with you here.
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Old 12-30-2009, 05:12 PM   #8
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I've never had Jameson's, but if we're going for the vanilla/caramel sweeter rums then I'm going to throw Angostura 1919 out there. Lots of vanilla, and just that right amount of sweetness without being too sweet.
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Old 12-30-2009, 05:47 PM   #9
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Based on your interest in finding something "on the sweeter side, full bodied, rich, and flavorful" I would like to humbly suggest the El Dorado 15 year if you are considering molasses based rums. Medium sweet (not as sweet as the Zacapa for instance - but not dry as say Mount Gay Extra Old) with lots going on in terms of flavour and aroma. In terms of body, it is more medium bodied, but it is most definitely full flavoured.

Dark fruits, dark chocolate, spice (cloves?) a smokiness about it......I'm afraid that I'm not very good at describing the flavour or aroma profile as some others are (but there are a number of MOR members who have posted tasting notes).

All of the rums already suggested are great rums. Best of luck in finding something you'll like. That's the great thing about rum, so many varieties, all with something else to offer for each person's individual tastes.
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Old 12-30-2009, 07:44 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason View Post
I've never had Jameson's, but if we're going for the vanilla/caramel sweeter rums then I'm going to throw Angostura 1919 out there. Lots of vanilla, and just that right amount of sweetness without being too sweet.
1919 has always surprised me as it is very different from anything previously sold by Angostura until 1919 came out. It seemed like it was developed to meet a perceived demand for a vanilla rum that would mix with Coke.
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