About Jamaican Spirits

About Jamaican Spirits
There are some very good lighter rums from Jamaica today, but it’s the dark heavy, potstill versions that get all the attention, those aged in whiskey or sherry barrels for anywhere from 10 to 21 years. Copper or golden colored with appealing flavors such as banana, roasted coconut and praline, these are smashing examples of rums with complexity and intensity as well as finesse and elegance. These are meant for sipping or for artisan cocktails. Inexpensive rums, such as spiced versions, are fine for use in most summer cocktails.

Top Picks for Jamaica

95 points
Dark amber color. Sweet, candied, complex aromas and flavors of vanilla creme anglaise, caramel pudding, dates, and dried pineapple with a tannic, vibrant, dryish medium-full body and a warming, complex, long finish imparting shades of tropical trail mix, candied orange peel, orange blossom water, and leather finish. An intriguing and satisfying sipping rum.
95 points $134.99
APPLETON ESTATE JOY Anniversary Blend Rum
94 points
Medium dark amber color. Fruity, candied aromas and flavors of dried mango, grilled peach, italian leather, and caramel gelato with an dryish full body and a peppery, epic, endless finish with overtones of rose petals, milk chocolate, chipotle peppers, and mole finish. A flavor journey to write home about.
Plantation Xaymaca Special Dry Rum
93 points
Gold color. Aromas of hot copper pot, dried tropical fruit, whole allspice, and burnt toffee with a satiny, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light body and a medium-long plantain, dried pineapple, and brown butter finish. A minerally, Jamaican-style rum to keep on hand for any number of occasions.
93 points $24.99
Monymusk Plantation White Overproof Rum
93 points
Clear color. Aromas of ripe papaya, plantains in yogurt, cream of wheat with raisins, and grilled palm leaf with a glycerous, fruity medium body and a peppery, compelling, medium-long sweet cane sugar, icing, cherry stone, and ripe pear finish. A surprisingly smooth and flavorful overproof rum that will be perfect for boozy cocktail creations.
93 points $27.25
Rum Fire Jamaican White Overproof Rum
93 points
Clear color. Funky aromas of green plantain, green tomato, flint, freshly ground black pepper, and key lime with a silky, vibrant, fruity light body and a searing, interesting, long arugula, sweet fondant, hazelnut candy, and cream finish. A funky overproof rum to kick up the night.
92 points
Copper color. Funky, hot aromas of pollo lollipop, dried mango, wet cedar, and iberico jamon with a lightly tannic, bright, dry medium body and a peppery, medium-length burnt sugar, dried mango with salt and chile, raisin cake, and honeycomb cereal finish. A slightly savory rum for punches.
92 points $26.99
J. Wray Gold Rum
90 points
Best Buy
Gold color. Aromas of butterscotch and copper pot with a satiny, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a warming, appealing, relaxed bananas foster, caramelized pineapple, sea salt, and lime peel finish. A zesty gold rum with hints of pot-still character; round and robust.
90 points $16.99 Best Buy
WRAY & NEPHEW White Overproof Rum
90 points
Clear color. Aromas of banana leaf, tamarind, cocoa powder, rubber, and breadfruit with a silky, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a hot, engaging, medium-length peach and hints of spice finish. A wild ride of an overproof rum that offers much more than heat; tropical fruits, hints of smoke and spice will certainly add nuance to your next cocktail creation.
90 points $23.99
APPLETON ESTATE Rare Blend 12 Year Old Rum
90 points
Medium copper color. Interesting aromas of raw cane, chocolate covered cherries, smoky roasted chestnut, and chamomile with a lightly tannic, crisp, dryish medium-to-full body and a peppery, massive, medium-long sliced ripe bananas with caramel sauce and peanut, crystallized geranium, black tea, and menthol finish. A sophisticated, mature rum with plenty of refined character.
90 points $37.99
APPLETON ESTATE Signature Blend Rum
87 points
Light amber color. Candied, fruity, funky aromas of caramelized banana slices, overripe pineapple, ripe plantains, and singed banana leaf with a round, prickly, fruity medium body and a hot, interesting, medium-length fallen pineapple, sake, caramelized apple pie, and black walnut wood finish. A funky rum for punch.
87 points $21.99