Take a guess what the best selling rum in the world is. If you said Tanduay, you probably live in the Philippines, where it’s been produced since 1854. Or you’re just good at reading context clues.
Yes, Tanduay Asian Rum is the number one selling rum in the world, with the majority of its consumption occurring in its home country. Now, the brand is trying to expand its reach by offering a couple of export products to the United States: Tanduay Silver Rum and Tanduay Gold Rum. And, as luck would have it, we’ve got a bottle of each. So let’s crack them open to see what’s inside.
Tanduay Silver Rum
Tanduay Silver is a blend of rums aged up to five years. It’s unfiltered, so the spirit pours a light straw color in the glass. On the nose, you’ll find sugar cane, mild vanilla and coconut. It’s clean without an abundance of heat. Take a sip, and flavors range from toasted sugar and citrus to coconut, pepper and grass. It’s well-balanced — neither too sweet nor too dry — and the body is slightly viscous for an overall pleasant mouthfeel. The rum finishes clean and dry, with hints of lime zest and oak. 40% ABV / $19.99
CE Rating: ★★★
Tanduay Gold Rum
Tanduay Gold is comprised of rums aged up to seven years in oak barrels. The result yields a nose of toasted caramel, coconut, vanilla beans and cooked bananas. There’s a hint of baking spices too. Drink up to find a sweeter rum than the silver. One that’s full of caramel and tropical fruits. It never gets too sweet though, as oaky tannins and peppery spice keep things in check. The finish is medium in length, with notes of toffee and cinnamon leading to a dry close. 40% ABV / $19.99
CE Rating: ★★★
Overall, we found a lot to like in Tanduay Rums. Both the silver and especially the gold are an exercise in restraint, as neither blows out your palate with too much vanilla. It’ll be interesting to see if Tanduay gains serious footing in the marketplace, as consumers seem entrenched in their love of Caribbean rums. The price point is steeper than mainstays like Bacardi, but it’s certainly within reach at a modest $20. In an age of craft spirits, $20 for quality hooch isn’t much. Now it’s up to Tanduay to make their name synonymous with quality rum here in the states.