Castro Añejo

Castro Añejo rum

Product of:  Venezuela
Aged:  7 years
Price: NA-not imported to USA
Alcohol: 40% ABV
Context: Premium Aged Rum
RG Rating: 8

Tasting Notes
An attractive golden brown mahogany color indicates an adequate barrel aging to enhance and smooth the rum, which reward with pleasing aromas of oak, vanilla, a sweet caramel likeness, than some tobacco and leather, with a delicate raisin and clove spiciness when time is taken to discern them.  Initial tasting reveals only a few new surprises after the aromas, and they are more in the order you taste them than in their nature.  The dry leather is more pronounced, with a touch of sweet for balance, and charred oak and vanilla/caramel present add a mild complexity.  A medium-light body somewhat less substantial than the flavors would indicate ends in a pleasantly dry finish, slightly warm, that fades quickly.

Castro rum debuted at Ed Hamilton’s 2008 Ministry of Rum Tasting Competition in New Orleans, earning a humble Bronze Medal while the product was reportedly still under development.  One year later in its encore appearance at the 2009 Ministry of Rum tasting event associated with the Rum Renaissance Festival in Miami, Castro earned a well deserved Gold Medal, recognizing its respectable progress.  Whereas the earlier version was suitably complex, the aromas were thinner overall than the latest version.  Same for the flavors, which revealed immature harmonizing of the blends, with simple smoked oak, caramel, and grassy cane.  As well, the 2008 Castro had un unremarkable dry finish.  Whereas Castro’s ’08 vintage left little to recommend it, the 2009 is a vastly improved rum, with well developed, balanced aromas and flavors that are both greater in complexity and maturity. Same package, new rum – what a pleasant surprise.

Produced by Alfredo Castro in Venezuela, the company claims their product has no relation to Fidel or Cuba (uh huh.)  One thing that the Castro folks got right the first time is the packaging.  Masculine as only tuxedo satin black can be, edgy and chiseled looking, the name proudly displayed in distinctly red block capital letters ending in a bold red star that clearly pays homage to the Cuban revolutionary leader; the bottle is stunning.  Curiously unique is the cap, which contains a pop-up pour spot that doesn’t seem able to be retracted or resealed once opened.  We believe this topper is intended for bar use only.  In any event, the cap will require changing to suit consumer use if/when Castro gets into widespread US retail distribution. 

Note to Castro:  the rum is beautiful and delicious.  Please ship some to us! 

Reviewed:  May 2009, at the Ministry of Rum Tasting Competition during Rum Renaissance Festival in MIami, USA. 

© Dave Russell 2017