It is not an easy thing to start your own rum company. When sourcing a rum it takes a lot of trial and error before a company discovers the final blend that they are happy with. Dehart Spirits, LLC explored a lot of rums from around the world attempting to find the right flavor profile for their product. Finally, they selected a blend of rums made in Panama.
Using sugarcane from Herrara, Panama, they fermented grade-A molasses and had it distilled using a 1922 American Copper and Brass Works Continuous column still. The rum is then aged in used American Bourbon barrels. The rums in the blend have a minimum of eight years in age and it is blended to 90 proof. The product is then filtered - first through cellulose plates and then by cold filtration. The company claims that the rum is “not altered by coloring, flavoring or blending of additives”.
The custom 750 ml bottle has “Grander” embossed on the front and sides. A dark and light blue and white neck wrap with “eight years” on the front and “Batch No. P8001” on the back matches the front label. The back of the bottle provides details about the product and the company’s marketing theme.
The rum holds a solid amber in the bottle and glass. Agitating the liquid creates a razor thin line that slowly beads up and slides down the glass.
The aroma has a nice smoky vanilla baseline that dances with the banana notes, spices and heat of the alcohol. I covered the glass and let it settle for a few minutes. After the rum settled I was able to identify the spicy notes as baking spices, nutmeg and a hint of ginger.
The first sip revealed a strong wash of alcohol charged crème brulee with an oaken spiciness swirling in right before the finish. Additional sips slowly reveal tobacco notes, roasted walnuts, dried orange peel and hints of black pepper. Consistently as the rum begins to fade there is a strong nip of alcohol and pop of nutmeg that lingers into a long dry finish.
Dehart Spirits wanted to capture a sense of adventure and accomplishment in a bottle with Grander Rum. I found the rum to be complex and aggressive. The proof of the rum does turn the volume up on some elements of the flavor profile while subduing others. With an eight year old blend it is not uncommon to have a pepper pop in the profile; instead there were hints of pepper, but a distinct pop of flavorful nutmeg instead. I enjoyed that it was unpredictable in nature and believe it can fill the role of quality cocktail ingredient or sipped neat with a meal that involves grilled meat or fish.
Currently Grander rum is available in central and southern Florida as well as through an online link that can be found on their website.