When I received this bottle of Brugal Anejo Rum, it somehow triggered a long lost memory from my misspent youth. Back then, I was 20 years old and living in Alexandria, Louisiana; don’t ask why, but I was. I only lived there for a year because I just couldn’t take the heat. On top of that, the humidity was so intense I swear I was never dry. Fortunately, I met a willowy 18 year old girl with short red hair and ended up having one seriously hot summer. Her name was Annie Jo and she spoke with a faint Cajun drawl that I just couldn’t get enough of. One night, after a bit of necking in the back seat of my Dodge, we began to chat and I turned to her and asked her how in the world she got the name Annie Jo, which by the way, I thought was really cute, and fit her perfectly. She laughed and then explained that her drunken sailor of a father named her that. He was a merchant marine and was generally out to sea more than he was ever at home, and actually, her mother preferred it that way. Turns out he had a proclivity towards rum, lots of rum and very frequently. He didn’t much care for the white rums and his favorite rum was a brown Anejo. The brand really didn’t much matter to him as long as it was an Anejo. Daddy was a Cajun with a deep drawl, which is more than likely how she came to talk the way she did. He didn’t speak a lick of Spanish even though at times he fancied himself a conquistador. The only Spanish word he knew was Anejo and he mispronounced it as Annie Jo, so he named his daughter after his favorite drink. We both laughed and got back to making out.

Enough of that nostalgia, let’s get back to the business at hand. Rum is distilled in 59 countries across the world. It all started back in ancient China or India; no one is really certain. Today, the most, and generally the best rums, come from the Caribbean and South America with around 70 brands coming out of the Caribbean. Brugal is imported from the Dominican Republic and they have been distilling rum there since 1888. This bottle of Brugal Anejo is encased in yellow rope reminiscent of a woman’s shapely leg sheathed in a fish net stocking. I guess I really can’t stop thinking about Annie Jo.

Airmail cocktail w/ bottle. (Get the recipe below.)

It is a blend of rums aged 2 to 5 years in American white oak barrels. The color is a golden amber and the immediate nose is of sweet syrupy molasses followed by notes of caramel and hints of vanilla that eventually settles into a laid back oak and a hint of leather aroma. Straight up its engagingly sweet and spicy but not too sweet nor too spicy, consequently making it nicely balanced. It finishes on an oaky note, with just enough pepper to make it interesting. The finish is short and sweet not too long, and again just about right.

On ice it mellows out nicely and becomes a decent little sipper with just enough interesting flavors to keep me drinking it. Mixed with coke and lime it parties quite nicely. Throwing in a bit of grapefruit and orange shows just how sociable this Anejo can be as it mixes agreeably without losing its distinct taste profile.

In the neighborhood of $20.00 per bottle, its price point is just about right. It’s not a great rum and it’s not a bad rum but it is in fact a very, very good rum well worth $20.00.

By George Brozowski

Here a fine way to mix up Brugal Añejo rum. Enjoy!


1.5 oz. Brugal Añejo rum

.75 oz. fresh lime juice

1 oz. honey syrup

1 oz. proseccoIce cubes

Combine rum, lime juice, syrup and ice in shaker. Shake. Strain into a coupe glass and top with prosecco. Garnish with a drop of Angostura bitters to lime wheel.


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