My latest attempt at finding the world’s best rums for the best value is called , “Old Monk” rum.  This is a 7 year old, vatted, blended rum.  Almost all rums are blended as part of the final step in making rum. It helps provide consistent flavor and color.   “Old Monk” comes in an attractive, squat bottle, with a short neck and pebbled, or almost etched glass, reminiscent of clear alligator hide.  The busy, unimpressive label is black and red with Olde-English script.  The surprising part was it country of origin: India.  This rum is a product of Ghaziabad, an industrial city  in Upper Pradesh, India.  It is in the northeast corner of the country towards Nepal but not far from Delhi.  Being unfamiliar with India, I was at first quite surprised and then pleased to try this rum.

First, a few kitchen chores:  Here is the link to the website Old Monk Rum

Old Monk Rum

Uninteresting Label Rum Guy, Really?

The dark, sugar cane rum is supposedly one of the world’s top sellers.   Upon opening the screw top and inhaling the aroma, the rich, tad-more-than-semi-sweet flavor wafted gently up.  The sugar-cane was very present and quite promising.  As I poured a shot for straight-up tasting  into my glass, the rum presented  even more, a dark maple-syrup color, and rich texture.  This 80 proof rum had a very impressive first taste.  Rolling it over the tongue, the flavor was strong, earthy, smoky, with just a little bite at the finish.   This is a rum you can drink straight, or even better, over ice. Mixed with Coke, Cherry Coke Zero, it blends very well.   Mixing it with various fruit juices it mixed surprisingly smooth, unusual for a dark rum.   Some dark rums overpower the fruit juice, some simply cover it like a heavy smog bank layered on top of the juice.  This rum blends  with a smooth teamwork where both juice and rum are present and pleasantly enhanced.   I have not yet tried it in Boat Drinks, for my “Frozen Concoctions”, but almost always it will be a similar result to mixing with fruit juices.  If it works for one, it will work for the other.  I look forward to it.

Net result:  For $18-$22 a bottle, this rum is a keeper.  Great value, very good flavor and texture.  A good choice.

Correction:  My previous Low Budget Rum Review gave a mixed grade for “Mount Gay Extra Old”.  It was a very expensive rum, very smooth, but I felt not a very good value given the taste vs. price.  I have to humbly adjust my grade.  After finishing the entire bottle, I realized my opinion had risen considerably about this rum.  If you are looking for high quality and the higher price doesn’t scare you away, I would highly recommend this rum.  It has caused a change to my rum rankings below:

1)      Pyrite

2)      Plantation Grande Reserve (Barbados)

3)      Old Monk

4)      Mount Gay Extra old

5)      Flor De Cano—12 yr

The Quest continues….

The Rum Guy….and primary Low Budget Review Guy

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