Drink This: Dictador RumBy Charlie Roper
You would be forgiven for not having heard of Dictador Rum. I hadn’t. And rum to be savoured and sipped isn’t something that has quite worked its way into our lives here on this Sceptered Isle, but it absolutely deserves to. It is every bit as complex, nuanced and intriguing as our beloved Whisky, especially in the hands of passionate master distillers like Hernan Parra.
Dictador is Colombian distillery based in the UNESCO World Heritage site of Cartagena. For over 100 years a single family has been distilling and aging rum, with Hernan the third generation of Parra’s to take the helm. Such lineage has allowed them to become true masters of their craft and also gives them access to a library of extraordinary rums from down the ages.
Whilst tradition is clearly pivotal to their success, Dictador also strives for innovation and the combination of these two led them to devise the Two Masters Project. Hernan and his brother scoured the globe for producers who shared their passion and knowledge, and entrusted them with some of the oldest barrels of rum in their possession. The idea was for these craftsmen to finish these rums in their own image, using their skills to create something truly unique.
Barrels of 40 year old rum were sent to 6 masters across Europe; Glenfarclas Whiskey, Laballe Armagnac, Chateau-d’Arche Sauternes, Despagne Bordeaux, Hardy Brandy and Leclerc-Briant Champagne. Here, the rum was transferred to different barrels of the masters choice in order to impart their own signature flavours and aroma to the finished product.
I had the privilege of sampling the first releases and the results are staggering. 8 months would appear insignificant compared to 40 years but the difference between the styles is marked. The fruitiness of whisky, the aroma of Champagne, the fire of brandy, the richness of red wine all come through in their respective blends with bass notes of the smooth fine rum humming in the background.
These bottles are masterpieces of craftsmanship and are truly unique. More releases are set to follow but this first batch goes on sale in the UK exclusively at Harrods in strictly limited numbers. Be sure not to miss out!
For more information on Dictador Rum, see the website here.