Grander Rum is a new, independently owned spirits brand that’s producing an eight year old Panamanian rum. The process begins in the sugar cane fields of Herrara, Panama, where the sugar cane is hand-harvested and turned into Grade-A molasses. After fermentation, that molasses is distilled at Ingenio San Carlos Distillery in copper plated column stills. It’s then aged for eight years in barrels that once held Kentucky bourbon. It’s completely unadulterated–just rum in a barrel–before being cut with water to a formidable 90 proof.
Panama produces a few of our favorite rums, including Ron Abuelo and Cana Brava, so we’re always happy to taste a new one. Perhaps it’s the mineral rich soil, or maybe it’s the wealth of talented distillers. But either way, Grander keeps some good company.
Grander Rum pours a rich amber in the glass, and on the nose you’ll find vanilla, spices and plenty of bourbon-heavy oak. The liquid is rich and oily on the palate, with flavors ranging from more of those vanilla and spice notes (nutmeg, cinnamon), plus dried fruits. Toward the finish things turn decidedly more dry, as the mouthfeel takes on a grippy, lip-smacking quality that’s full of warm oak and just a hint of cane sugar and bourbon sweetness.
This is well-made rum. Eight years in barrel imbues the spirit with plenty of wood, but it’s never overpowering. Instead, the deftly-handled oak achieves a nice balance alongside notes of sweet, spice and fruit.
– 45% ABV
CE Rating: ★★★★