The beautiful red box with a square-rigger on the front drew our attention. El Dorado Rum is a 12-year old rum from Guyana on South America’s coast. Not having much information about the region, we began researching immediately after the tasting. We discovered, the uniqueness of this rum lies in the stills.
Producing sugar and rum since the 17th century, Demerara Distillers operates the last remaining distillery in Guyana. The company consolidated all the old stills and rum making traditions from over 300 distilleries once operating in the region. Demerara now operates nine unique stills producing twenty different styles of rum. El Dorado 12-year old is blended from rums distilled in two very unique stills.
The original Wooden Continuous Coffey Still is from the Enmore Sugar Estate founded nearly 200 years ago and is now the last working example of it’s kind in the world. This towering still produces a medium bodied rum with a mild and fruity aroma. The Double Wooden Pot Still was the original still from Port Mourant Estate, founded in 1732, moving several times before arriving at Demerara. The unique copper-necked still is valued by blenders because it produces a heavier bodied, flavorful rum with deep aromatic notes. Demerara has the last operating double and single wooden pot still in the world.
El Dorado 12-year old is a blend of rums no less than 12-year old rum stock, then is aged in American bourbon oak casks.
The first note that hits me is a light caramel, molasses. There is also a slight vanilla with an oak base. It’s not overly sweet. On the palate, I immediately get cherry and apricot. As the rum moves from the tongue to the roof of my mouth it changes from fruit to more floral. There is a delayed warming on the throat which lingers nicely. There’s a hardiness to the rum with consistent notes sip after sip.
I love the golden amber color. The nose has molasses and baking spices which take me back Gran’s kitchen at Christmas. On the palate, I’m surprised by the thick texture without the blast of sweetness. Here I’m getting orange, brown sugar, and cloves with maybe a hint of nutmeg. That balance of sugar and spice gives way rather quickly to a nice warming sensation which stays with me for quite some time. This is my style of rum – lightly sweet, soft notes and warming.
While we differ with some of the notes we both agree there is a consistency with every sip. At the $30 price point this is a good base to begin enjoying sipping rums. As a side note: we happened to sample the El Dorado 15-year old a week prior and relegated that to a mixing rum. Don’t spend the extra $10.00 for the older rum.
3.5 out of 5
Sipping Rum Scale
1 – An expensive mixer
2 – A quick celebratory shot
3 – Wouldn’t be embarrassed to share with friends
4 – Are my friends worthy of a sip
5 – Special moments rum