Rum – Light v heavy Rum

Words by Simon Difford

Rum – Light v heavy Rum image 1

Rum is termed 'light' or 'heavy' depending the level of flavour components or 'congeners' - products of fermentation that are not ethyl alcohol. The level of these (esters, aldyhydes and lower alcohols) is dependent on the length of the fermentation and the purity to which the rum is distilled. The fewer congeners, the lighter the rum; the more congeners, the heavier it will be.

Rum produced from a pot still or single distillation column is usually described as heavy. Multiple-column stills can produce both heavy and light rums depending on how the still is operated but column stills are usually employed to produce light rum. Light rums tend to have a short fermentation while heavy pot still rums are usually distilled from a wash formed by a long fermentation.

The odour, texture and taste of light rums are more subtle and refined than those of heavy rums, which have a heavier, more full-bodied flavour. The level of impurities in light rum is less than a third of those found in heavy rums. Distilleries producing light and heavy rums often blend the two to produce a rum having characteristics of both, usually using a majority of heavy rums in the blend.

Light rums tend to originate from countries originally colonised by the Spanish, such as Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and Venezuela, while heavy rums come from countries from the former French and English colonies, including Haiti, Jamaica, Martinique, Barbados, Guyana and the Virgin Islands.

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Vizcaya Crystal Cask No. 12 Rum image

Vizcaya Crystal Cask No. 12 Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Havana Club Puerto Rican Rum image

Havana Club Puerto Rican Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

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Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Facundo Neo image

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Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Havana Club Professional Edición D image

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Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Bacardi Carta Blanca light rum image

Bacardi Carta Blanca light rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 37.5

Bacardi Limited Edition Heritage Bottle image

Bacardi Limited Edition Heritage Bottle

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 44.5

Diplomatico Blanco Reserva Rum image

Diplomatico Blanco Reserva Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Havana Club 3 Year Old image

Havana Club 3 Year Old

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

El Dorado DeLuxe Silver Rhum Blanc image

El Dorado DeLuxe Silver Rhum Blanc

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Starr African Rum image

Starr African Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Cana Brava image

Cana Brava

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 43

Wicked Dolphin Silver image

Wicked Dolphin Silver

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Matusalem Platino Rum image

Matusalem Platino Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Toz White Gold Rum image

Toz White Gold Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Mahiki White Rum image

Mahiki White Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Montanya Platino Rum image

Montanya Platino Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Brugal Blanco Especial image

Brugal Blanco Especial

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Green Island Superior Light Rum image

Green Island Superior Light Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Angostura Reserva Light Rum image

Angostura Reserva Light Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 37.5

Santa Teresa Claro Rum image

Santa Teresa Claro Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Brugal Ron Blanco/White Label image

Brugal Ron Blanco/White Label

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

El Dorado Lite Rum image

El Dorado Lite Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 40

Rebellion Ron Blanco Rum image

Rebellion Ron Blanco Rum

Category: Spirits
Sub category: Rum & Cachaça
alc./vol: 37.5

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