Male Standard was recently invited to the launch of Bacardi’s California debut of their rare lines of sipping rums, known as the FACUNDO Rum Collection. Named for Bacardi founder Don Facundo Bacardi Masso, the collection includes four blends of well-aged rums intended solely for sipping, sourced from the family’s private reserves, and being released to the public for the very first time.
The rums are described as ‘sipping rums’; not to be mixed, but to be enjoyed neat or on the rocks, and to be savored over time and on the palette as each note touches the nose and tongue. In an interview with Bacardi, they highlighted the difference between a luxury rum and one of a lesser quality. Smoothness: as the products age longer, the notes even out. In addition, the rums stay on the palette for a longer time. Bacardi added that there is a balance to the sweetness; luxury rums are not overly sweet like lesser products. Lastly, they stated that in these luxury rums, individuals can sense a clear distinction between the types of casks and barrels these rums were aged in, based on the subtle notes within them.
In this extremely limited release, Bacardi introduced four luxury sipping rums, the first of which is NEO, one of the oldest and lightest rums available today. It is a blend of medium-to heavy-bodied rums, with oaky and almond aromas and a smooth taste with a hint of sweetness that finishes neatly on the palette. It is carbon-filtered after aging to remove color, so it is a sheer blonde rum. Between one and eight years old, it can be purchased for $45.
Second in the line is EXIMO, also blending medium-to heavy-bodied rums, though EXIMO is aged in fine oak barrels. It is the one of four that is blended prior to aging, which leaves the Master Blender responsible for perfecting the flavor and aromas before the natural aging process… 10 years in advance. EXIMO boasts aromas of vanilla, toffee, honey, and caramel… and even a hint of bittersweet chocolate. On the tongue, it carries smooth, balanced notes of walnut and vanilla, with a buttery and silky texture. It leaves the palette with a rich, deep finish and a touch of vanilla. EXIMO is between the ages of 10 and 12, and it is available for $60.
The third rum is EXQUISITO: medium-to heavy-bodied blend aged in oak. Some of the rums have been individually filtered over activated carbon prior to aging. After aging and blending, the rum is stored in sherry casks to rest for one month, resulting in a bold yet balanced rum. It combines seven-year-old rums with fruity notes and 23-year-old rums with spicy notes, resulting in a bold aroma that is delicately nuanced with walnut and butterscotch, and has a warm aftertaste that will remind the sipper of toasted nuts and raisins. EXQUISITO is between the ages of seven and 23, and can be purchased for $120.
The last of the collection is PARAISO, features a blend of some of the oldest and rarest rums in the private Bacardi Family Reserves, and is known as the ultimate sipping rum. It is married in French casks for one month, and has aromas of vanilla, almost, and toasted oak with rick, silky overtones. On the tongue, the sipper will experience a smooth and mellow rum with a rich, long finish, containing lasting notes of fruit and caramel. It can be as old as 23 years, and is available for purchase at $250.
Now that the Facundo line has officially been launched in California, we recommend you hit the local high-end hotels and bars to sample these sipping rums before they disappear, as they are available in very limited quantities. We sampled them at this launch, and all we have to say is this: these rums are not to be mixed with coke. Enjoy sipping, gentlemen.