Dictador 20 Year Old

Dictador 20years bottle-OK-USE

Product of: Colombia
20 years average (solera method) 
Price: $59.99 (SRP)
Alcohol: 40% ABV 
Sugar:  0-5 g/L (
Context:  Premium Aged Rum
RG Rating: 9.5

Tasting Notes
Extremely Smooth.  Dictador’s 20 Year Old solera rum enjoys the gorgeous, reddish brown color of cherry wood.  A delicately sweet floral-like bouquet wafts for an instant before the aroma of sugarcane miel, caramel and toffee present themselves in a fully matured and finely tuned rum.  Further sniffing reveals subtle scents of dried currants, cranberries, smokey cedar and paraffin, a hint of clove and cinnamon, with tame alcohol.  Dictador 20 combines a complex array of wonderful aromas in a manner not found in other aged rums – it really does smell wonderful, almost humidor-like.  The initial taste transitions seamlessly from aroma to flavor, sweet with brown sugar, and offers rapidly unfolding, complex layers that awaken your palate beyond what your nose enjoyed.  The medium heavy body has a wonderful spicy pumpkin bread texture; the perfect segué to a finish that’s long, filling, and sweet with caramel and mild spice.

Dictador is produced in a distillery that has been making rum since 1913, and after 99 years, they’re producing some beautiful aged products. Their near-century of experience shows in the excellent products.  Distileria Colombiana was founded by Don Julio Arango y Parra,   a third generation descendant of Severo Arango de Ferro.  The elder  emigrated to present-day Cartagena, Colombia from Spain in 1751 with the mission of increasing trade between his homeland and its colonies in the New World.  Cartagena subsequently grew to be one of the most important trading ports in Spain’s colonial system, and Arango y Ferro’s power grew with it, such that he came to be called Dictador.  Of course, legend has it that he too, appreciated fine rum.

Dictador 20 year old rum is distilled in copper alembic (pot) and steel continuous column stills from fermented sugar cane honey (reduced sugar cane juice).  Aging is conducted in a solera method employing oak Xerex barrels that were previously used for aging Sherry.

Dictador Girls-OK-USE

Dictador sources an opaque black bottle from Japan, where the “soft-feel” paint is available.  The matte black coating has a non-slip texture like thin latex, and must be the reason why Dictador’s showgirl models wear those smart black spandex catsuits.  Or, am I trying to hard to find meaningful synergy in Dictador’s merchandising?  I think not.  And while the rum packaging (and the girls) are an impressive presentation, the beauty of Dictador is more than skin(tight) deep.  Dictador 20 year old is a jewel. 

Reviewed: June 2012 at the Rum Gallery, USA.

© Dave Russell 2017