M&S Gran Reserva Guatemalan Plantation Rum

M&S Gentlemans Rum Guatemla Rum ReviewGentlemans rum as its called in my house, due to my wife’s dyslexia/stupidity.  Having said that perhaps it  was a Freudian slip. This is another rum from Marks and Spencer. But are they offering a premium experience at a more manageable price?

This Marks and Spencer rum comes housed in a nice stubby style bottle with a high quality polished metallic screw top.  Immediately it is a cut above most “supermarket” rum.  The bottle has a lovely uncluttered and clear styling (it’s a bit like this blog!)

The rum is available in most larger M&S at around £22-25 a bottle, I got a bottle of this on sale for £22 but its usually £25.  There are a few different rum producers in Guatemala (Zacapa are the first name on the list) however unlike the “Rum Master” http://www.marksandspencer.com/cana-negra-guatemalan-rum-nv-single-bottle/p/p60046481 I do not believe you are getting Ron Zacapa 23 rum for half price.  I know this because I’ve got a bottle and it tastes nothing like this rum!

So what are you getting? Well (you may notice the label is different between my picture and M&S’s) as explained in more detail on my newer bottle you are getting a rum which is finished in cognac barrels.  Clue anyone?

Basically this is a rum which is likely to have been procured by Plantation (Cognac Ferrand) from the Industrias Licoreras de Guatemala distillery (the only distillery left in Guatemala -responsible for Ron Zacapa, it also produces the Botran line of rums).   There is a rum available via the Plantation label which is a Guatemalan Gran Anejo.  I would say that the age of this rum is probably similar to that.  It may even be the same rum.  As that rum was available for around £30 I would say my guess is probably more accurate than the Rum Masters.

So onto the rum.  The rum is golden with a reddish tinge.  The label also states that caramel is added, if that was to impart sweetness then it has certainly worked.  The rum is as sweet as honey.  On occasion it can be too much.  I guess it just depends on the mood.  The rum is different and quite distinctive.  When the taste buds are in the mood for this rum it can be drank quite quickly.  It works as a sipper if you have a sweet tooth.

It’s a very good rum and you are getting a bit of a bargain.  Not as much as some think but still not bad.

3 stars





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10 comments on “M&S Gran Reserva Guatemalan Plantation Rum

  1. Thank you for the informative post, as ever. I wonder if the previous bottling (cana negra rather than plantation) was the Ron Zacapa, hence Rum Master’s differing analysis? I just picked up a bottle for a Christmas tipple regardless…can’t wait to crack it open!
    Have a great one!

    • Thank you. No I just think he was jumping to concluaions without having tasted.

      • Any idea if the current offering is any better/worse than the old stuff?

        • From my experience it hasn’t changed just the packaging slightly.

  2. I just received a bottle of this rum as a birthday present. As to the sweetness of it, caramel is not responsible (caramel used as coloring actually tastes bitter and only tiny amounts are needed). The ingredient responsible is “cane sugar” clearly listed as ingredient on the bottle. Which is fine, I guess, it’s a sweetened rum, and since it’s clearly labeled as such, there is no dishonesty from its producer. Points for transparency from me.

  3. […] M&S Bajan Estate XO and Guatemalan Plantation rums have both been uncovered as being supplied by Cognac Ferrand’s rum blending wing […]

  4. I have just tasted my first drop of the Gran Reserva Guatemalan Plantation rum and, whilst it is in no way comparable to the wondrous Ron Zacapa, I have to say it knocks Havana Club and Mount Gay in to a cocked hat. I like the previous comment regarding “Gentleman’s Rum”, albeit tongue-in-cheek, but this not a pedestrian rum to be spoiled with mixers, but one to be enjoyed for what it is.

    • Indeed as far as “supermarket” rum it really is rather good. I hope they expand their range in the future.

  5. That looks like a great bottle, brandy and sherry cask use sounds amazing. I wish I could get a bottle of this in the states. This rum is 100% from the Cognac Ferrand estate which is chateau de bonbonnet. I guess by leaving out the plantation name as well as Ferrand, they could offer a better product at a cheaper price.

    Plantation has not even released Guatemalan Gran Anejo in the states. I was able to get a plantation single Cask Guatemala XO – Pineau des charentes Finish from a liquor outlet that ordered special limited release of it. Have not cracked it open yet though.

    • Apart from the bottling strength (40%) it is EXACTLY the same as Plantation Gran Anejo (42%) and I dare anyone who can tell the difference between the two. I certainly couldn’t. Both are quite easily available in the UK. I think this rum is around £25 per bottle Plantation is around £30.

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