Aged: 3 years
Product of: Cuba
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Launched at the 2017 Athens Bar Show, Havana Club Esencial De Los Cantineros was created by Havana Club with the help of Alejandro Bolívar Rodriguez, the Head Bartender at Cuba's legendary El Floridita to mark the famous bar's 200th anniversary.
Alejandro wanted to create a true Carta Blanca (aged white) rum which had the "mixability of a white rum and the drinkability of an aged rum." Esencial De Los Cantineros is aged 3 to 4 years in third-hand multiple refilled American oak barrels and then blended. This blend of aged rums is then rested for six months in casks which are so old and used that they impart very little wood influence to the rum. Only after this finishing period is the blend judged ready for bottling.
The barrels in which Havana Club rum is matured were originally used to age bourbon before being shipped to Pernod Ricard's Midleton Distillery where they were used to age Irish whiskey. The barrels are then sent to Cuba where they are rinsed and then filled with water and left outside in the sun for precisely 23 hours. This process is repeated until the Master Blenders can no longer detect a whisky flavour in the water. These much refilled casks are then used to mature Havana Club.
Only 1,500 individually numbered 50cl bottles were made for the initial Limited Edition release. Considering that El Floridita uses an average of 89 cases (1,068) of Havana Rum a week, this release is very limited and the rum very collectable.
Review and Tasting
Sampled on 08/11/2017
(sample bottle No. 0703 of 1500) Clear, pale golden amber.
White vermouth, coconut, light vanilla, grassy hay and elegant spice.
Medium-bodied. Delicately but assertively spicy with dry oak tannins balanced by coconut, vanilla and sugar cane richness.
Vanilla, hay and light spice with some vermouth.
Perfectly balanced with a complex flavour and delicate spice, Alejandro has succeeded in his desire to create a blend that has the "mixability of a white rum and the drinkability of an aged rum".
Closure: Screw / Stelvin cap
Type of vessel used for main maturation: American Standard Barrel (ASB) 180 - 200 Ltrs
Type of wood used for additional maturation 'finishing': American Ex. Bourbon