Our artisan-crafted spirit reflects rum’s gutsy roots – born of the finest rums, each hand-selected throughout the Caribbean, United States and Central America for their age and distinct character, then brought to the U.S. and married together in our unique solera aging and blending process. Papa’s Pilar represented the original spirit of rum – Bold, well-traveled, uniquely American.
A few weeks ago I saw a post in the Google+ GOLF Community promoting Papa’s Pilar Rum. I wasn’t familiar with the rum, and wasn’t even sure if it was distributed to Arizona. I reached out to Golf Life and asked for some more information. They told me to reach out to the distillery, and sure enough, they were kind enough to send me some samples to try/review. The rum arrived in just a few days, and the presentation was impressive.
They sent me two different rums, their Blonde Rum and Dark Rum. I am not a rum connoisseur, but I was excited to try them both as a “casual” rum drinker. I invited my buddy Tommy over; he’s a big whiskey fan, but I figured he could appreciate the rum and provide insight on the flavors.
We started with the Blonde.
Papa’s Pilar Blonde Rum
In The Glass: The rum is practically clear, but has a nice hue to it. The color comes from the rum being aged in bourbon barrels and port wine casks. I’ll bet the flavor on this is sweet due to the aging – looking forward to finding out. It is also finished in Spanish sherry casks. I expect a lot of complexity on the nose and the palate. Let’s see what this rum smells like.
Aroma: The nose is boozey, but I am getting a lot of different notes… Vanilla shines through and a subtle sweetness, that I expected, is there. If this is what all rums smell like, well… I can see myself drinking a lot of that in the future. Excited to see what how this tastes.
Flavor: This is even sweeter than I imagined. I wasn’t sure what you would mix a spirit like this with, but I found some recipes on their website. Some of these drinks sound good, particularly the Mombasa Mojito and the Wanderlust.
Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is actually quite nice. The rum does a good job coating the palate, and leaving me wanting more after every swallow. If the Blonde is this good, I can’t imagine how good the Dark must be.
Aftertaste: The finish is also sweet and lingers on my tongue. The finish is somewhat drying, and has a nice vanilla note. Imagine actually licking a stick of vanilla – that is what I am getting here. I like it a lot.
Like I said, I don’t drink rum all the time, but this example is really done well. This bottle retails for $39.99, and is something that I plan to keep in my liquor cabinet. It isn’t a rum that I would mix, but would enjoy drinking neat or with a splash of water. This is a great start to a spirit I don’t have a lot of experience with. I can’t wait to try the Dark.
Tommy commented on the Blonde, saying, “This is really good. I don’t know if I’ve had rum like this. I would really enjoy drinking this straight versus mixing it in a cocktail or perhaps with an ice cube.”
Papa’s Pilar Dark Rum
In The Glass: This rum is darker in the glass… Hence the name! I would love to visit the distillery to see their process for these two rums. They just started making spirits at O.H.S.O. Distillery and they have already released a vodka and a rum. Maybe I can ask them for a tour… Something local to learn more about the process.
Aroma: You can really smell the sherry on this one. It is much sweeter on the nose, too, and promises to be a lovely flavor. I’m getting a similar nose on this as the Blonde, and while it won’t taste the same, I am sure that is a commonality among rums. This experience makes me want to learn so much more about rum.
Flavor: The flavor is nice. You get an explosion of flavor, and while it’s sweet, imagine that familiar “whiskey shot” flavor , but more tolerable and enjoyable. I am very pleased with the flavor of this, and could see myself drinking this a lot… Even as an after dinner drink.
Mouthfeel: This rum is much smoother and the mouthfeel seems thinner. While that isn’t necessarily the case, the Blonde seemed thicker and more robust. That’s not a bad thing, and is actually something I would expect from a higher end spirit.
Aftertaste: The finish lingers and the sweetness continues. I really enjoy the finish on this rum. The sherry, again, shines throughout the finish.
Tommy liked this one a little more, too. “You can really smell and taste the sherry on this. I’m not a professional taste tester, but I really enjoy this compared to the Blonde. I enjoyed the Blonde, but this one is even smoother and provides a complex finish that I could sip on for hours. I wasn’t a rum drinker before trying these two variants, but I plan on buying a bottle the next time I am out.”
Both of these rums are delicious… But the history of the rums is what impressed me the most. This rum was inspired by Ernest Hemingway, an author, free-thinker and adventurer. I wasn’t too familiar with him, but did some research while enjoying the rum and find the relationship with his legacy intriguing.
It’s time for a rum that rekindles the wanderlust in us all. A rum inspired by possible the world’s greatest adventurer.: Ernest Hemingway
The rum is great, and the story is unforgettable. You can learn more about the history of the rum here. The experience I had with these rums is similar to that of a good beer… Beer tastes better where you drink it with someone you care about, and knowing more about the history behind it just ads to the overall experience.
Always drink responsibly.