Tuesday 4 June 2013

Tesco West Indian Dark Rum

While the high-end sipping rums are great we all need a good day-to-day mixing rum, something to sling into a rum and coke on a hot day and just relax. With summer nominally having arrived in Scotland I grabbed a bottle of this from Tesco and fired into it.

  • Atmosphere - a spot of Queens of the Stone Age some good stoner rock to help the flow of alcohol

  • £6 for a 35cl bottle
  • 37.5% ABV
  • Colour - light golden, which is a tad confusing for a nominally dark rum, the shot below is slightly backlit (just sunlight) but this is very light.

  • Nose - a big initial vanilla and toffee hit that is swamped by a pungent almost agricole style grassy, vegetal smell
  • Flavour - meh, not much flavour of anything at all, a little bit of sweetness, some hints of the vanilla and toffee.
  • Finish - Actively unpleasant with a lingering bitter aftertaste

So, straight up it's not a winner it's safe to say. It's way too light for a dark rum but it's not meant to be drunk straight so I moved onto the traditional Rum & Coke and a Dark n Stormy, using a 3 to 2 mixer to booze ratio.

  • The coke hides the pungency well but there really isn't any flavour here and the finish becomes more bitter

Dark n Stormy
  • This really kills the flavour of the ginger beer, and the fizz, rendering it flat and insipid
  • Used Old Jamaica for the ginger beer which is usually excellent for a Dark n Stormy

Now all it says on the bottle is West Indies for the origin of this rum, and going from the vegetal notes and almost musty nose I figured it for a very young Jamaican rum, still, I was curious and e-mailed Tesco to ask where it was from and how old. Now in fairness to them they came back within 48 hours telling me:
"our Quality team can confirm that the rum is from Guyana but the age is unspecified and we do add some caramel for colour"
Which really surprised me, I generally love Guyanan rums and if it's that colour after having caramel added it must be very, very young indeed. The caramel does explain the bitterness so they must be adding a lot

So, overall, a failure as a mixing or sipping rum, the low cost is a false economy when the liquid is as bad as this is


  1. Just bought this for 15.90 and can tell you it will go straight down the sink. Got no taste, so disappointed, should be taken off shelf. Absolutely disgusting !!

  2. I like this rum with pepsi max. Better than some of the more expensive ones. Nothing wrong with it.

  3. Tesco has a strong foundation in UK and with that support it strengthened globally with improvement strategies. wolff of canada home

  4. Thanks for this review, I was tempted to buy some today as an experiment............... I will save my money for a better Rum.