Guatemala, isn’t that the country made famous by Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid?  I would be willing to bet that if I gave you 5 minutes to tell me everything you know about Guatemala those would be the most silent 5 minutes we ever spent together.  However, you probably already knew that Guacamole comes from Guatemala and is the delicious product of the fruit of the Guaco tree that only grows in the highlands of Guatemala.  Ha, and you thought it had something to do with avocados.

First of all Guatemala is neither part of Mexico or South America but part of Central America.  It is about the size of the state of Tennessee and has a population of just over 15 million people while Tennessee has 6.4 million people.  Okay, so now you’re asking yourself what in the world has this geography lesson have to do with anything? Well, it turns out that Ron Anejo Botran Reserva Rum comes from Guatemala, and it’s been coming from there for over 60 years.

Botran Rum 2

This rum is produced from locally grown sugar cane and is a blend of rums aged from 4 to 14 years.  It is aged in a mix of bourbon, port and sherry casks.  Well, with all that going for it, I can’t wait to give it a taste drive.  The nose starts with bananas of all things and progresses through apricots and sweet black figs followed by vanilla and brought up in the rear by sherry with a touch of charred oak and finally the rum.  That is one full nose.  On the palate, the charred oak takes the lead immediately followed by the apricot and vanilla and then the sweetness of cherries and the sherry.  It is very smooth with absolutely no bite or even a twinge of a tingle.  It is intriguingly complex and deep and tasty and full bodied.  The finish is reminiscent of a toasty crème brulee top, but not as sweet, followed by an oaky smokiness.  It too is smooth and lasts quite a while.

On the rocks, all the flavors tend to blend together a bit more and become less distinct but still quite delightful.  The nose continues to be dominated by banana and papaya with a touch of oak and the sweetness of honey.  The palate is still full bodied and oily with the muted sweetness and smoky oak stepping forward followed by the apricot and finally the rum.  The finish is even smoother, if that’s possible, leaving a smoky sweetness behind that lasts a while.  This just might be one of the better rums I have tried in a long time.

A 750 ML bottle will set you back about $30.00 but I have seen prices as low as $24.99 and even at $30.00 this is a bargain basement price for a top drawer rum.  Butch and Sundance had the right idea retiring in Guatemala, and if they didn’t, they should have.

By George Brozowski