As far as names for new rum expressions go, “A local nobleman” is one to beat. That’s the English translation of “Mantuano,” the title given to one of the two new rums launching this month as part of Diplomático’s new Tradition Range.
Mantuano’s bottle bears the snazzy image of Venezuelan ambassador extraordinaire Don Juancho, which also graces the label of Diplomático’s excellent flagship rum, Reserva Exclusiva. But that’s where the similarities between the two end.
Diplomático Mantuano, which has been aged for eight years, is a medium amber in color and features a rich, fruity nose that packs dried cherry and robust vanilla aromas. It is soft, round, and exceptionally mellow, a strong contrast to the rich and heavy sweetness of Reserva Exclusiva. A sour-sweet flavor dominates the palate, evoking green apple, sour cherry, dried apricot, and even something akin to Jolly Ranchers. But those flavors are never cloying: instead, they build up slowly, reaching a pleasant crescendo at the back of the palate.
Like Reserva Exclusiva, this one’s a sipper. But it’s a far different, and refreshingly lighter, sipping experience especially suited to spring days (we’ll get there eventually). And Mantuano’s lighter body should work nicely in cocktails too, if that’s your thing.
Diplomático Mantuano is an excellent sipping rum. But what clinches that final star is its price: at just $24, Mantuano is priced lower than the majority of craft rums, and delivers a taste-to-dollar ratio that’s tough to match.
— 40% ABV
CE Rating: ★★★★