Dos Maderas 5+3

Dos Maderas 5+3

Product of:  Finished in Spain, distilled and initially aged in Barbados and Guyana.
Aged:  8 years
Price: $32
Alcohol: 40% ABV
Context:  Premium Aged Rum
RG Rating: 8.5

Tasting Notes
Take your time with Dos Maderas 5+3; you’re about to embark on an elegant journey with aromas and flavors that complement as you transition from one phase of the tasting ritual to the next.  Notice first the pure amber color reminiscent of teak, then sniff the calming aromas of fresh-split white oak, wood smoke, subtle vanilla, a light sweetness like brown sugar, milk chocolate and caramel, then finally a pleasantly mild pecan and tropical fruit.  Initial tasting brings caramel and vanilla along with mild tropical spices and lingering pecan.  A medium soft body exhibits a fruity texture (mango, papaya), before finishing off-dry with minimal sweetness characteristic of rums from Spain.  The smoky oak lingers well and long, adding hints of mild tobacco.  

Dos Maderas-THe Evolution of Rum

Translated from its native Español, Dos Maderas means Two Woods.  And 5+3  adds up to 8 in any language, as in ‘aged eight years’.  As you’d expect, Dos Maderas is a wonderful rum.  Distilled in the Caribbean nations of Guyana and  Barbados, the rums are aged in oak casks in their native countries for five years before being shipped to Jerez, Spain to rest another three years in wood barrels previously used to age that nation’s signature alcoholoic beverage - Sherry.  Dos Maderas ages the rum for three years in barrels that formerly contained “Dos Cortados” Palo Cortado for an average of 20 years, which forces considerable residual sugar into the wood.  The process creates to Dos Maderas 5+3’s unique flavor.  

Dos Maderas’ rums elicit even more interest when you dig deeper into their sources.  Unquestionably Spanish (for those who prefer to label their rum) in flavor, Dos Maderas begins however with two distinctly English style rums. Bajan rums are arguably the definitive English-style rum, with distinctly proud and earthy flavors.  Guyanese Demerara rums are made in the quintessential English style – covering a wide range depending on the still and process used – but they all deliver big flavor, with characteristic molasses, licorice, charcoal and wood.  Age both rums for five years in their native country, then ship the rested spirits to Spain for further aging in native Sherry barrels, blend them to perfection, and you get the magic that is Dos Maderas. As the producer says, “One Spirit, Two Cultures.” 

Dos Maderas 5+3 is edgier, more mixable, and cannot boast the three-stage aging provenance of its older sibling P.X. 5+5, but it has it’s own wonderful personality.  Drier and less sweet due to fewer years of aging in used Paolo Cortado Sherry casks, dos Mderas 5+3 rum is complex; expertly balancing its sophisticated flavors into an eminently enjoyable sipping spirit.  Seeking a complex sipper, perhaps with Caribbean adn European history?  Then try Dos Maderas 5+3.  It's an excellent sipper solo, and lends itself to many sophisticated cocktails if you take time to understand its many fine flavors.

Reviewed: December and May 2010 at Miami Rum Renaissance Festival, and again in April 2012 at the Rum Gallery, USA.

© Dave Russell 2017