The Best Rums for Whiskey Drinkers - Rum Raiders
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The Best Rums for Whiskey Drinkers

The Best Rums for Whiskey Drinkers

(Photo: Eva Bronzini/Pexels)

Rum is incredibly diverse, both in taste and regionality. Even for hard-core whiskey aficionados, there are rums that will excite the taste buds while still providing some of those familiar flavor notes. This makes creating a bridge between rum and whiskey quite easy if you know where to start.  Here are the best rums for whiskey drinkers.

Appleton Estate Rare Cask 12 year

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Appleton Estate is one of the most well-known brands in the rum industry, with good reason. The Rare Cask puts forward a rum that is a people pleaser while still being representative of Jamaican-style rum. The taste will take you somewhere tropical with notes of banana and coconut, countered by an oaky char from the barrel. This is a great introduction to rum for almost any whiskey devotee. 

For the Bourbon Lover: Real McCoy 12 Year

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The name of this rum originated from Bill McCoy, a famous Prohibition-era (1920-1933 in the U.S.) bootlegger known for not tapering with his wares, who dealt with competitors trying to sell knockoffs versions of his product. This led to his rum being known as the Real McCoy.” Prohibition was ironically a boom period for rum and resulted in the invention of some of the great classic cocktails. The 12 year is aged in ex-bourbon barrels giving those classic char, vanilla flavors that will remind you of sipping on your favorite bourbon, while offering some unique characteristics coming from the molasses used to make this rum. 

For the Scotch Sipper: Hampden Estate 8 Year Rum 

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Jamaica is known for its bold and often funky flavored rums, and the Hampden Estate distillery is no different. The distillery has been around since the 1700s in one facet or another, making it a fixture of this Caribbean Island nation. Hampden Estate 8 Year wild fermentation brings out the funk and intense fruit ester. The characteristics of the Hampden Estate rums are a good counterpart to the big, bold whiskies of the Scottish islands.

For the Irish Whiskey Fan: Rhum J.M. XO Aged 

Rhum J.M is one of the biggest names in the industry that makes rhum agricole and is credited as the first recorded distillery to produce this style of rum. Many rhum agricoles are vegetal with a good deal of woodiness, balanced by the distinct sugarcane sweetness. Irish whiskey drinkers will appreciate the more rounded edges and subtle oak flavors of this rum. 

For Those Who Crave the Spiciness of Rye: Tampa Bay Gasparilla Reserve 

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The Tampa Bay Rum Company boasts an ancient and storied history — dating all the way back to 2018. Despite the distillery’s youth, it offers quite a selection of unique rums. Tampa Bay Gasparilla Reserve rum is aged in whiskey barrels that were also used for maple syrup. It is then finished in rye whiskey barrels, overall providing a sweetness all to its own, complemented by a delicate rye spice; perfect for lovers of rye whiskey.

Read Next:

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8 Best Rums for Beginners

10 of the Best Budget Friendly Rums for Under $20

The 5 Best Spiced Rums Better Than Captain Morgan

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Jessica Gleman is the managing editor of Rum Raiders. She received her Ph.D. at the University College of Dublin in Ireland, where she studied the archaeology of ancient alcohol. Jessica has a passion for the alcohol industry, including agriculture, distillation and mixology. When Jessica is not writing about rum, she is also a travel and food enthusiast who loves going around the world and experiencing various cuisines and cultures. She is enthusiastic about sharing her knowledge and expertise and learning even more about this amazing spirit.