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Rum Review: Ron Abuelo Anejo 12 Anos Gran Reserva Rum

 
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How do you rate Ron Abuelo Anejo 12 Anos Gran Reserva (five is best)?
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4
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Total Votes : 1

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Capn Jimbo
Rum Evangelisti and Compleat Idiot


Joined: 11 Dec 2006
Posts: 3481
Location: Paradise: Fort Lauderdale of course...

PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 8:26 am    Post subject: Rum Review: Ron Abuelo Anejo 12 Anos Gran Reserva Rum Reply with quote

Ron Abuelo Anejo 12 Anos Gran Reserva Rum: "Banana Bread with Raisins"

Before I hold forth - or third in this instance - please note that both Ron Abuelo Anejo and Ron Abuelo Anejo 7 Anos have both long ago been reviewed (Anejo and Anejo 7 Anos). These were some of our first reviews, and it shows - shorter and without all the entertaining drivel you have come to love and appreciate. Not to worry...

I'll make up for it here, with both the Anejo and 7 Anos re-reviewed in comparison to the very-hard-to-find Ron Abuelo Anejo 12 Anos.

All the Abuelos originate in Panama and are distilled by the Varela Hermanos (the Varela men or brothers, kinda like the Blues Brothers). The company was established about 102 years ago (1908) by Don José Varela Blanco and continues under Mr. Luis Jose Varela. Currently the company harvests about 50,000 tons of cane in the summer, which are of course fermented and then distilled in a four column still. Their major product - Herrerano Seco - is the leading rum in Panama. All the rums are aged in small white oak barrels.

Undoubtedly this combination is responsible for the smoothness and character of rums that even the dear Preacher prefers. We surely do. The reviews, concluding with the Abuelo 12 Anos Gran Reserva...

Ron Abuelo Anejo Reserva Especial

Sue Sea:

Quote:
I like all the Abuelo bottles for their classic and traditional look, as befits the Varela family. Interestingly, as the rum becomes older the bottle become squatter - just as we all do, lol! All are in classic amber glass, and quiet, deep maroon top band for the Anejo and 7 Anos, serious black for the 12 Anos. Only the Anejo carries an efficient plastic screw top, the 7 and 12 Anos' are corked. Lovely.

The entry Ron Abuelo Anejo first presents as oakey, almost nutty, like a Chardonnay. It was this that led me to describe it earlier as "light, fresh and pleasant". I stand on that. There is a bit of reed, tart grapefruit and if you go deep, a prickle.

Anejo's front palate is tart, peachy smooth - which then warms up nicely into a nice clove heat with a bit of vanillan. The finish is quick and very warm. All in all a very smooth, light bodied and consistent rum.

A nice beginner's rum in the Cuban style.


Me:

I have always liked the Abuelos'. The Anejo Reserva Especial and also the 7 Anos Reserva Superior have always been easy to find and are very fairly priced (less than $20). In the glass the Anejo is gold, bordering on cloudy, with thin fast legs.

My first aroma is of medium high fruit (think the lighter fruits like grapefruit), followed by Sue Sea's nutty oak, over a background of what I call tar (and Sue Sea calls molasses). Try hard and you may find a slight sourness (think sauerkraut), and a high honey sweet nuttiness. All very pleasant.

The Anejo Especial also reminded me of - are you sitting down? - Angostura 1919, with just a hint of high banana. Really.

The palate opens with a peachy light orange but the clove heat comes on quickly and forcefully (something we like). The finish is a short and hot spike of clove. It should be obvious why this rum is in the Cuban section.

On re-review our ratings have improved. I'd rated it a "6", Sue Sea a "5". And now...

Rating (10 is best): 6.5.


*************


Ron Abuelo Anejo 7 Anos Reserva Superior

Moving right along...

Sue Sea:

Quote:
The 7 Anos presents a noticeably deeper aroma and shows what time in (especially) smaller barrels can achieve. Now leather emerges, and the high fruity tartness is gone. We are now into an orange marmalade and noticeable vanillan.

The front palate is likewise deeper - smooth, rich and sweet, and then moves into a growing leather and a distinct, warm clove, longer finish. The 7 Anos leaves a sweet lip heat aftertaste.

Very, very nice. A true sipper.


Me:

As we noted before the Anejo 7 Anos has become a real sipper, rather than the demonstrably easy drinking Anejo Especial. In the glass the 7 Anos is now a light amber, still with thin but slower legs and still slightly cloudy. It presents similarly to the younger Anejo, but is is noticeably deeper and sweeter in tone. The deep alcoholic prickle is gone (as well as the high notes).

Deep, smooth and sweet.

I concur completely with Sue Sea's palate but would add that the finish is a bit dry or astringent, leathery, hotter and longer. In sum, Anejo 7 Anos is more robust, dramatic and intense. The sweet is sweeter, the heat is heater, lol. Ron Abuelo Anejo 7 Anos is extremely well done, a superb example of appropriately balanced sweet and heat .

As Sue Sea loves to add "...like orange marmalade with heat!".

Rating (10 is best): 6.5 (comparable to earlier "7").


*************


Ron Abuelo Anejo 12 Anos Gran Reserva

And now for the review for which you've been waiting (assuming you are still sober - I no longer ab, er am). The Anejo 12 Anos Gran Reserva. The Big Kahuna.

Sue Sea:

Quote:
Please keep in mind my earlier comments and note that the 12 Anos continues with ever deepening tones. The 12 Anos presents fully with leather and now a deep orange. The vanillan has completely emerged, with ripe banana and prune. It borders on mincemeat.

The early palate follows with more sweetness and less heat than the younger Anejos'. It is richer, with apricot, raisin, prune and banana. The midpalate is smoother with a growing cinnamon. In comparison the finish is smoother - now a black pepper - and leaves suspiciously sweet lips. This rum is all about texture, smooth and syrupy and I consider it a good hot toddy or cigar rum

Still, I've rated the Ron Abuelo Anejo 12 Anos only marginally higher than either the Anejo or Anejo 7 Anos, mostly for its somewhat greater complexity.


Me:

In the glass the Abuelo 12 Anos is a darker amber, still slightly cloudy and with scary slow legs. Surprisingly for an alleged 12 year, I find no green edge. The aroma opens with leather over deep orange and a vanilla prune. The palate opens sweet, thick and syrupy smooth and moves into a pruney leather, then finishes with a hot black pepper (no more clove!) mouth and top of the head finish and sweet lip aftertaste.

I concur that Ron Abuelo Anejo 12 Anos Gran Reserva has the deepness and hot sweetness to accompany a heavier ciger. But I have to be honest and wonder if maybe, just maybe this rum is too sweetly flavored...

Rating (10 is best): 7.
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Capn Jimbo
Rum Evangelisti and Compleat Idiot


Joined: 11 Dec 2006
Posts: 3481
Location: Paradise: Fort Lauderdale of course...

PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2013 4:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A note from a member:


Quote:
Anon. Member: "Sad to say I am starting to think some rums I really like are altered, at least a little - such as the El Dorados which do seem a little sweet to me. However, I still love them as the flavors are robust enough to be complemented not obscured by the sweetness, as in the Diplomatico and Ron Fortuna rums. Zaya and Zacapa also have enough flavor to make them interesting despite being on the sweet side.

Did you ever compare the Abuelo 12 yr to the El Dorado 12?"


This member wondered whether the Abuelo might better be located in the Demeraran style section. Although we haven't retasted the Abuelo 12, in rereading the review, I believe this member's suggestion has merit, at least insofar as the 12.

Thanks for the note.
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bearmark
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Joined: 02 Jun 2012
Posts: 270
Location: Near Dallas Texas

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2017 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just had this one for the first time this week and highly enjoyed it. It's sweet for sure, but like El Dorado 15, full of flavors and fun to explore. It's only $38 in Texas and I plan on getting a bottle to explore it further. I just really wish I could taste it without the extra sugar!
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Mark Hébert
Rum References: Flor de Caña 18 (Demeraran), The Scarlet Ibis (Trinidadian), R.L. Seale 10 (Barbadian), Appleton Extra (Jamaican), Ron Abuelo 12 (Cuban), Barbancourt 5-Star (Agricole)
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