Bacardi Gold vs. Mount Gay Eclipse Rum – Which Rum is Better as a Cocktail or Neat?

Admittedly, we didn’t have any gold mixing rums in our cabinet but it was about time we did. Gold or amber rums have been aged in wooden barrels for a shorter duration than others, to give the rum its color. This provides for a richer flavor profile over the whites we have recently reviewed. The two big names in gold rums are Mount Gay Eclipse and Bacardi Gold. 

Mount Gay Eclipse or Bacardi Gold
Mount Gay Eclipse vs. Bacardi Gold… Which one is better?

Mount Gay, out of Barbados, was founded in 1703 and is the oldest rum brand in existence. It is said that the Eclipse rum was inspired by the 1910 appearance of Halley’s Comet coinciding with a solar eclipse. The rum is double distilled in copper pot stills and aged in Kentucky oak barrels.

Bacardi was founded in 1862 in Cuba by two brothers Facundo and José Bacardi. They fled to Puerto Rico when Fidel Castro came to power, taking their rum recipe with them. Today, Bacardi is the largest family-owned spirit company in the world. Bacardi Gold is produced using column stills, and aged in oak barrels for one to two years. An additional charcoal filtering is used to help enhance the characteristics of the young rum. 

What Rum is Better NEAT? Mount Gay Eclipse or Bacardi Gold

Mount Gay Eclipse

  • The amber color, with glimpses of red, lightly coats the glass with soft lacing. The nose has caramel, toasted to the edge of being burnt and a prominent orange zest note. The first sip bites the palate. As the second and third sip evolve we get hints of burnt caramel and vanilla. A strong spice note comes from cinnamon and citrus peel that has some rind left on giving it a bitter taste. The finish stays consistent with the palate and lingers quite a bit. 

Bacardi Gold

  • The light amber color coats the glass with little evidence of lacing. The nose has an earthy note that can be best described as the sweet aroma of banana and citrus leaves after a rain. Those earthy notes carry through to the palate opening up to toasted nuts with a hint of oak and ginger for a bit of heat. The rum finishes as it started but without the opportunity to linger. 

The Mount Gay has a more robust palate than the Bacardi and could be sipped with an ice cube. The Bacardi should be left to mixing.

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What rum is better mixed into a COCKTAIL? Mount Gay Eclipse or Bacardi Gold

Our first attempt was a Classic Daiquiri. Neither rum held up to the lime so we moved on to a Cuba Libre. (2 oz. Coke, 4 oz. Rum and ½ lime.)

The Bacardi was biting, with a powerful lime note creating an odd, bitter taste. The Mount Gay was more balanced, allowing the caramel and vanilla notes to come through without being overly sweet.

OVERALL what is the Better Rum? Mount Gay Eclipse or Bacardi Gold

We found the Mount Gay to be a more well-rounded rum and the Bacardi strictly a mixer. At a price point of $18 – $20/bottle we would keep Mount Gay in our cabinet.