Top Shelf Rum Picks From The Distiller Community

The Distiller community added these rums to their top shelves the most last week.
Mar 09, 2020
  • 10
    10 Appleton Estate 21 Year Rum
    95
    Woody & Rich
    Appleton Estate, located in Nassau Valley in the parish of St. Elizabeth, has been producing rum on the 11,000 acre estate since 1749. The sugarcane varieties are estate-grown and the yeast used in fermentation is a proprietary strain. Both column and pot stills are used in its production. For this bottling, the rums are aged for at least 21 years in American oak. They are blended and bottled at 86 proof.
  • 9
    9 Appleton Estate Rare Blend 12 Year Rum
    92
    Sweet & Rich
    Appleton Estate is one of the oldest brands of rums on the market having been established in 1779. The estate where the sugarcane is harvested, processed, distilled, and aged encompasses over 11,000 acres in Nassau Valley, Jamaica. American ex-bourbon barrels are used for aging, which in this case, is for a minimum of 12 years. Note: This was formerly known as Appleton Estate Extra 12 Year. The name was changed in mid 2015.
  • 8
    8 Brugal Papá Andrés 2015 Alegría Edition Rum
    98
    Rich & Sweet
    Developed by Brugal Master Blender, Jassil Villanueva Quintana, this is the second release of what has long been the Brugal family's private reserve rum, blended from 36 old casks stashed away for safekeeping in Brugal's warehouses. Papá Andrés is named in honor of Brugal's founder, Don Andrés Brugal Montaner, while this edition, "Alegría", translates to joy. The accompanying crystal decanter, set inside a brightly adorned presentation box with an illustrated collector's' book, were all created by Spanish designer Javier Mariscal. Only 1,000 decanters were released, with all profits going to the Brugal Foundation.
  • 7
    7 Plantation Barbados 5 Year Rum
    91
    Fruity & Sweet
    Plantation Barbados 5 Year Rum is a blend of pot still and column still Bajan rums that are aged in bourbon casks for 3-4 years in the Caribbean. The blend is then finished in French oak casks at Maison Ferrand’s Château de Bonbonnet in the heart of the Grande Champagne district for 1-2 years more. Note: Formerly called Plantation Grande Reserve 5 Year.
  • 6
    6 Plantation XO 20th Anniversary Rum
    93
    Fruity & Sweet
    The Extra Old was released to mark Alexandre Gabriel’s 20th anniversary at the helm of Cognac Ferrand. The Extra Old showcases Plantation’s oldest Bajan rum reserves, aged for 12-20 years in bourbon casks. The selected rums are blended at Château de Bonbonnet in France and finished in small French oak casks for 12-18 months.
  • 5
    5 J. Wray and Nephew White Overproof Rum
    89
    Hogo & Rich
    J Wray and Nephew is a renowned overproof rum produced in Kingston, Jamaica weighing in at 126 proof. Wray and Nephew, as it's known behind bars, is not only a very popular spirit in its home country, but is also the top-selling high-strength rum in the world. It is produced from a combination of both pot and column distillations of a 30 hour fermentation of sugarcane molasses wash and proprietary house yeast.
  • 4
    4 Mount Gay Black Barrel Rum
    78
    Spicy & Woody
    Mount Gay, located in Barbados, traces its roots back to 1703 and is known as the oldest rum distillery in the world. Black Barrel is the newest offering to the Mount Gay line of rums released in summer of 2013. Master blender Allen Smith marries double pot and column distillates that are first individually aged in ex-bourbon barrels before being blended and finished in heavily-charred oak barrels. It is bottled at 86 proof. Note: As of April 2020, this blend and label has been updated with the new version displaying master blender Trudiann Branker's signature.
  • 3
    3 Ron Diplomático Reserva Exclusiva Rum
    94
    Sweet & Rich
    This is the Venezuelan distillery’s flagship rum, called “exclusiva” as a tribute to their 18th century founder Don Juancho Nieto Meléndez, who was always in search of exclusive flavors for his rums. It’s a blend of 12 year old copper pot-still rums made from both molasses and sugarcane honey, aged in ex-bourbon barrels.
  • 2
    2 Treaty Oak Barrel Reserve Rum
    79
    Spicy & Woody
    Treaty Oak Distilling was founded by Daniel Barnes and originally based in Austin. To keep up with production, the distillery now resides on a 27-acre ranch in Dripping Springs. Their Treaty Oak Barrel Reserve Rum is distilled from fermented Texas molasses before being aged in new American white oak barrels for at least two years. Note: This rum has been discontinued.
  • 1
    1 Ron Zacapa 23 Sistema Solera Rum
    92
    Sweet & Rich
    Ron Zacapa 23 Sistema Solera Rum was first produced in 1976 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Guatemalan town of Zacapa. It's a rum made from raw sugarcane honey grown on the Zacapa estate high in the hills of Guatemala, extracted from the first pressing of sugarcane juice. It is then fermented using a proprietary strain of pineapple yeast and distilled in a copper-lined column still. After distillation, the rum is aged in a Solera process from a series of casks which once held bourbon, oloroso sherry and Pedro Ximenez sherry. The rums in the blend vary between 6 and 23 years of age.