The World’s Best Value Rum?

At a mere 83 seconds logically there shouldn’t be enough content in this video to even merit an article – no matter how small.  However, there is so much to talk about in this video to simply comment on the link would not be doing rum any justice whatsoever.

Originally broadcast by the BBC as part of its Middle of the Road  Saturday morning Food and Drink programme, this video has been posted on Youtube as part of CaribbeanCookingTV’s channel.  At 7 seconds it invited discussion on the best value rum in the world……..

At 17 seconds a rum expert proclaims that “pound for pound this is the best rum in the world, actually”.  “That’s a serious statement” points out another guest.  However our resident rum expert here has tasted “most of them”.  To which a lame joke about trying them all in one weekend is made.

Which would be quite funny but I doubt this chaps knowledge does actually extend much further than a weekend of rum drinking.  For anyone to proclaim they have tried most of the rums in the world is a big statement to make.  There are literally thousands of rums out there.  So  who is this expert whom Michelen Star chef and host Tom Kerridge and guest are putting their trust in?

Well it is none other than Joe Wadsack who of course is very prominent in the rum world.  Except he isn’t……….he is one of those lovely wine experts.  Unfortunately this shines through immediately when he begins justifying his claims with regard this rum being such outstanding value.

“If you look at the price of Cognac……” I’m buying rum mate.  Why would I have any interest in the price of Cognac? What relevance is this to this being the best value RUM in the world? Yeah so rum is cheaper than Cognac.  We know that, its also generally cheaper than aged Scotch Whisky.  We know that already as well.  When you buy apples do you compare them to the price of mangos to justify buying them? Nope me neither.

I may be being slightly unfair, yes Rum is good value I can see his point.  I also must take time to thank Joe for not mentioning the “W” word in this assessment.

So how else is the price of this rum justified? Well its sweet and as observed by Tom Kerridge “smooth”.  Joe once again shows his expertise by proclaiming you can “smell it comes from sugar”.  Yes Joe, this particular rum very much comes from sugar and has a couple of spoonfuls added just in case.  That is how it is as sweet and smooth.

Second for Second is this video the biggest load of shit in the world?  Harsh, its not that bad. Joe does recognise good rum should be aged and whilst the “no added sugar” brigade will also criticise the use of Plantation 5 Year Old…..I can understand it would be a good rum for a “beginner” to start with.  It’s a popular and accessible choice.

However, lets take the “value for money” claim and do some research.  The Plantation Barbados 5 Year Old, is quite readily and freely available in the UK and will cost around £25-28 (sometimes £30 in specialist Wine Merchants and Department Stores).  However, for anyone who shops in M&S and is a little bit thrifty they also have a “aged” rum from Barbados.  M&S Bajan Estate XO tastes very, very similar to the Plantation Barbados 5 Year Old.  I struggle to tell the two apart.  It’s also a few pounds cheaper at £22.

So do we have winner here? Is this the best value pound for pound rum in the world? Well lets (unlike Joe) compare apples with apples.  How about another 5 Year Old Rum from Barbados? How about we visit Foursquare and for under £20 lets try the Doorly’s 5 Year Old Barbados Rum.

This rum isn’t as sweet or arguably as smooth as the Plantation 5 Year Old but RIchard Seale would argue that is because this is real rum which has not been treated to some “dosage”.  We could even go further down in price and look at another Bajan rum Cockspur Fine Rum freely and easily available at £12 a bottle.

In short it was a nice flashy statement to make, which I’m sure has sold a few more bottles of Plantation Barbados 5 Year Old but as with most things – always be willing to challenge expert opinion.  Especially when they are not experts in the field they are commentating on…….



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5 comments on “The World’s Best Value Rum?

  1. Though I am certainly no expert I would have said the best quality rum for the price just has to be Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference 8 year old rum at £16 per bottle (sometimes discounted for less). It has spoiled me now as I am no longer interested in trying anything in the £12 to £16 range as they all now seem vastly inferior and I have to fork out at least another £5 to £10 to get anything better.

    • That’s a good shout John – Sainsburys Superior Rum (a blend of Jamaican rum) isn’t too shabby either.

  2. Only when you know what you are actually drinking Matthew!

  3. Ah, now I get it! Thanks for the commentary! But perhaps one could make the case that rum in general is, dollar for dollar, the best spirit in the world!

  4. Nicely put, mate. False authority is a pet peeve of mine.

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