Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced

Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced Rum Review by the fat rum pirateDon Q Oak Barrel Spiced. Don Q are a rum producer from Puerto Rico. Availability of their rums has increased dramatically over the past couple of years.  Thanks, in no small part to the efforts of Global Rum Ambassador Alexx Mouzouris.  Don Q rum is now widely available in the UK and I would recommend trying their range to anyone interested in trying a light column distilled style of rum without additives.  Which is a bit of a rarity these days.

Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced uses a 3 year old rum as its base.  It is then blended with a “medley” of spices.  To produce this their flagship Spiced Rum.  A bottle of Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced will set you back just under £30 here in the UK.  Bottle size is your standard 70cl but the ABV is a bit of a surprise for a Spiced Rum.  It is bottled at a hefty 45%.

I really like the presentation of Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced.  The bottle is a nice shape and the labelling is clear and uncluttered. No fairy stories for this Spiced Rum.  Again something that is unusual within the general scheme of things.  A nice real cork stopper with a wooden cap and with the metal “man on horse” Don Q logo.

On the front of the bottle it is noted as being “exceptional Puerto Rican Rum with spices and other natural flavors”.  I presume that as well as spices sugar or derivatives of sugar are also added.  As its a spiced rum that is not an issue for me at all.

A little bit of digging around reveals that Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced has cinnamon, vanilla, clove, nutmeg and caramel added to the base rum.  I’m not mad keen on Cinnamon heavy spiced rums such as Chairman’s Reserve Spiced but having tried this at Rum Festivals recently I found it from memory to be quite subtle in that regard.

Anyway that’s as much information as I think we need so lets get on with the fun part.  Nosing and tasting.

Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced Rum Review by the fat rum pirateIn the glass Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced is a warm, vibrant red/orange tinged golden brown.  The nose is initially quite sweet and vanilla led.  Refrishingly though its quite alcohol forward as well.  It’s not rough but its sufficiently boozy enough for you not to take this spiced rum to lightly.  There is also a nice waft of oak and spice – more familiar in a aged rum rather than a spiced.  Although the vanilla is the dominant marker on the nose it is a very fresh, very authentic warming vanilla note.

Sipped on its own Don Q Barrel Oak Spiced will I feel appeal to even a rum connoisseur who would only usually entertain “pure” type rums.  The spicing is hot and fiery – which rubs along with the slightly higher ABV spirit.  It’s a very fiery “dangerous” kind of spiced rum.  Taste wise there is a lot going on.  Way more than the nose suggests.  All the spices I found by poking around the internet show themselves.  Vanilla., clove and nutmeg to begin with.  Cinnamon and caramel in the mid palate and the finish is long and very spicy.  Quite a lot of oak and some fiery notes of ginger and cinnamon.  A touch of white pepper.

It is for me more of an infused rum rather than a lot of the generic artificially sweetened Spiced rums which have flooded the market.  It has an almost home made authenticity to it.  It’s like a spiced rum you might find on holiday in some little bar that produces their own.

It is a really fresh tasting spiced rum.  Rich, warm and vibrant.  I’ve sipped most of my bottle.  I haven’t really mixed it much.

When mixed with cola it works pretty well but you do lose quite a lot of the spice and it does for me become a little too sweet and vanilla heavy.  With lemonade it works better as you still get a lot of the subtler nuances of the spicing.  I’d imagine it will work equally well with soda water.Don Q Oak Barrel Spiced Rum Review by the fat rum pirate

If you are cocktail enthusiast then I would imagine the possibilities you could imagine using this Spiced rum will be pretty much endless.  It’s a very versatile and very unique tasting spiced rum.

For me Bristol Black Spiced Rum, Foursquare and Elements Eight Spiced rums are the standout spiced rums I have tried so far.  This joins that company and is easily one of the best spiced rums on the market.

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