Arehucas Selecto 7 Años

Arehucas 7-RG1

Product of:  Canary Islands, Spain 
Aged:  7 years
Price: $28
Alcohol: 40% ABV
Context: Premium Aged Rum
RG Rating: 8

Tasting Notes

Arehucas 7 Años is a beautiful, shiny, tobacco-brown colored rum.  Swirling in the glass quickly produces profusion of legs that race down  thickly, leaving behind a densely-packed beaded crown of rum drops that take their sweet time to develop into legs.  Many don’t go the distance back to the rum, while others run slow and thin.  Already Arehucas 7 Años exhibits visual complexity.  On to the sniffs then …

Dense earthy aromas of wood, tobacco, char, caramel reveal themselves first followed by a fig-like sweetness and fruit (dried apricot) on the nose.  A simple taste delivers all the same complexity as the aromas; flavors put palate to the smells.  A medium-heavy body supports an earthy dried fruit texture, with subdued caramel and vanilla becoming more prevalent towards the finish.

Destileria Arehucas-RG

Anecdotes
Who better than Alejandro Vinayo, Commercial Director of Exportation, to describe Arehucas’ magic:  “The most important thing you have to take into account about Arehucas 7 is, we age in American oak barrel at minimum 7 years, sometimes 8 or 9 years, in one of the oldest and biggest rum cellars of all Europe. Our cellars are 130 years old.  For that reason the “bouquet” of this rum, from ageing in barrels all these years gives it a special flavor.  The production of Arehucas 7 is based on the traditional rum masters of the 19th century, so the entire process is hand made and controlled personally by our cellar staff with more tan 30/35 years of experience.” 

Arehucas starts with hand-cut sugarcane, the fields are not burned prior to harvest because the sweetest cane juice resides at the bottom of the stalk, and burning chars the base of the sugarcane plant.  Arehucas prefers an agricultural-style rum over molasses, so after the fresh-pressed cane juice is only partially dehydrated, and then fermented for about 72 hours, after which the baker's yeast dies from alcohol poisoning as a natural result of its activity.  The sugarcane “wine” is then distilled once in a double column still, and the raw spirit is laid down for aging at 60% ABV in new, 400 liter American red oak barrels sourced from Mexico.  

Arucas A4[1]

An ancient bodega has a special affect on the rum while it ages.   Temperatures are normally 72°F, but can vary from 68°F to 86°F year round.  The Arehucas people are doubly fortunate - sure their rums are delicious, yet the Angels consume only about 2% per year, sparing the rest for us.  Barrels are topped off with same-month rum stocks every 2 years or so to keep the barrels adequately charged.  The rums are diluted with water from Arehucas’ desalinization plant prior to bottling.

Opinion
Arehucas 7 has a delightful quality, its aromas and flavors are well developed, seemingly beyond its seven years.  Slightly sweeter with caramel and heavier bodied than its
12 year old elder sibling, the 7 Años’ smoothness makes it incredibly easy to drink neat, and often.  I’m reminded of the best Panamanian and Cuban seven year olds, but Arehucas 7 is fuller in body than its distant Caribbean relatives.  It’s as if the Arehucas distillers are trying to make the point that Columbus needn’t transported sugarcane from the Canary Islands all the way to the Caribbean during his second voyage in 1493 after all.   History cannot be undone, and there’s no denying that Arehucas 7 is an affordably exquisite sipping rum.

Reviewed:  November 2013 at The Rum Gallery, USA.

© Dave Russell 2017