White rum is complex and difficult to define. Its most noticeable feature is obviously its color, but beyond that, it’s often misunderstood. Most often than not, rum enthusiasts keep it in the back of their minds as something to put in the cocktails and nothing more.
But just because things are like that doesn’t make white rum any less special than it really is. And indeed it is. White rums can be both aged and not at all, sweet in taste or close to vodka, vegetal or fruity, high-proof and fiery, but one thing they’re not is boring.
The vast majority of white rums are matured for three to six months, even longer in special climates or for exclusive styles.
While some of them can be aged in oak casks, most of them typically spend that maturation period in stainless steel tanks. They’re afterwards filtered to remove the color.
When it comes to white rum options on the market, they are vast at the least. Not to mention how intriguing all its expressions can be.
Within the space of this article, we’re going to try to instill in you the curiosity for white rum, a subjective undertaking at its best.
To try and round up the most impressive white rums on the market right now is just scratching the surface, but here are what we feel like the 15 white rums you need to try out right now.
- 15. Brugal Especial Extra Dry
- 14. Don Q Cristal
- 13. Captain Morgan White Rum
- 12. El Dorado 3 Year Old
- 11. Probitas
- 10. Havana Club 3 Year Old
- 9. Denizen Aged White
- 8. Rhum J.M Agricole Blanc
- 7. Bacardí Superior White Rum
- 6. Ten to One Caribbean White Rum
- 5. Flor de Caña 4-Year Extra Seco
- 4. The Real McCoy 3 Year Old Rum
- 3. Wray & Nephew White Overproof Rum
- 2. Banks Five Island Blend Rum
- 1. Plantation 3 Stars Silver Rum
15. Brugal Especial Extra Dry
Dominican by origin, white by triple filtration, aged between two and five years, the Brugal Especial Extra Dry is as smooth as it can be and a formidable choice for countless bartenders around the world. They use it as an ingredient to craft delicious cocktails, but also in their well.
If you have about $20 to spare, get yourself a bottle of this Brugal Especial Extra Dry and try it out at home in a nice Mojito.
It’s cask-aged, double-distilled as per Brugal’s proprietary distillation technique, triple charcoal filtered to give it the clarity it displays, and able to change your perspective about rum in general and about white rum in particular.
It’s one of those liquors that exceeds the confines of the proverbial box most people place white rums in. It’s more than worth to taste it should it speak your language.
14. Don Q Cristal
Extremely popular in Puerto Rico, the Don Q Cristal wraps your taste buds in exquisite notes of pear, lemon, and banana, leaving you with a rare and refined smoothness at the end.
Though it can make wonders in a cocktail, it also makes for a very good sipping rum, exceeding conventional expectations.
The Don Q Cristal is aged in American oak barrels for at least 18 months before getting through a carbon filtration process that hones and refines the final taste.
13. Captain Morgan White Rum
Captain Morgan White Rum moves closer to a good budget oriented option, but without disappointing. It’s a delicious liquor and goes very well with a plethora of cocktails, such as the classic Daiquiri or the ubiquitous Mojito.
Sipping it neat isn’t for everyone, since there’s no unique flavor to hang on to, but works amazingly well with lime and club soda, a combination that will bring out the best in it, leaving you with a smooth, creamy and sweet feel.
The Captain Morgan White Rum is light on the nose, and its natural sweetness seems helped by a little added sugar, enhancing it but without detracting from the overall flavor experience.
12. El Dorado 3 Year Old
The form-following-function bottle of the El Dorado 3 Year gives a first hint of something special inside. The mix between the gold tones of the label and the silver of the clean liquor inside as seen through the bottle creates a stunning contrast.
But we’re not here to talk about pretty bottles. The liquor inside is aged in oak barrels for at least three years before being double filtered through natural charcoal to remove the color while preserving the full-bodied flavor.
Wonderfully smooth, rich, and creamy, it features citrus, coconut, vanilla and caramel notes. This complexity makes it incredibly versatile, so therefore an ideal candidate for something like a Mojito or a Daiquiri.
With a higher alcohol content (47% ABV) than most of the others, the Probitas manages to steal the show no matter the cocktail you use it in. Its flavors won’t get lost on the way from the Piña Colada glass to your palate.
It’s almost to good to be a true white rum. Fruity and bold, it’s a superb blend of aged and unaged pot still and old-school Coffey still rums that come from the most outstanding distilleries in the Caribbean, Hampden Estate (Jamaica) and Foursquare (Barbados).
Its character can be enjoyed by sipping it, leaving notes of pineapple, banana, and molasses, and a viscous feel that fills the mouth. Should you want it in a cocktail, just choose one you prefer and don’t look back.
10. Havana Club 3 Year Old
It’s white, and it’s a classic Cuban rum. With its crisp, light, and mellow taste, the Havana Club 3 Year Old does justice to Cuban rums, and makes for an ideal ingredient for almost all cocktails that are inspired by the Cuban way of life.
The liquor is column-distilled, aged for three years, and filtered. What’s left behind is a delicious blend of light sweet citrus flavors and a refreshing feeling. Unfortunately, it’s not the kind of rum to sip, at least not without a rock or two, due to its astringence, but as we mentioned, it’s simply ideal to serve it in Cuban cocktails.
9. Denizen Aged White
The Denizen Aged White is a rum with a journey. A literal one. The liquor is sourced from the Caribbean islands of Trinidad and Jamaica, and travels all the way to Amsterdam, where it’s carefully blended.
While most white rums are better in cocktails, this one is better without them. It makes for an ideal sipper, perfect for a night out on a tropical island.
8. Rhum J.M Agricole Blanc
Unlike most rums out there, which are distilled from fermented molasses, Rhum J.M Agricole Blanc is made from sugarcane juice, and that propels it to a whole new level of alcoholic greatness. And speaking of alcohol, it’s up from the usual 40% to 50% ABV, so mind the gap there.
The price is also up a good notch, selling for nearly $40 a bottle, but that simply guarantees you a higher than usual quality when compared to other rums on the market.
When it comes to flavors, know it’s intense and wild, with surprisingly fruity notes. Spice and tropical fruits are present in the taste, with citrus and banana being the most obvious. Delicious hints of caramel can also be felt.
7. Bacardí Superior White Rum
There are many people who’d swear by the Bacardí Superior White Rum, and that’s understandable. Bacardi is a solid option and an affordable one too when it comes to crafting Mojitos or similar cocktails. The sweet and floral flavors mix well with mint or lime, which gives it an advantage.
Among the flavors, you’ll surely notice the lavender, coriander, apricots, bananas, orange flowers, and even some slight coconut. Despite its budget friendly $16 per bottle, the flavors are well represented, making this rum incredibly enjoyable and perfect for those Mojitos or virtually any kind of cocktail.
If cocktails are not your thing, the Bacardí Superior White Rum can stand on its own or with some soda and lime.
6. Ten to One Caribbean White Rum
The Ten to One Caribbean White Rum is probably the best overall white rum on the market right now. Crafted in Trinidad and Tobago from a blend of column-still Dominican rums and pot-still Jamaican rums and bottled at 90 proof by American standards (45% ABV), it’s a versatile drink that does very well in cocktails.
It’s light, it’s clean, a rare and balanced white rum that does extremely well on its own as well, with only a few sunrays left in the day, and perhaps a rock or two.
The taste is full of flavors, with caramel, citrus, grassy notes, banana, and pineapple leading the assault on your taste buds. The price goes a tad higher than your typical on-budget white rum, with almost $30 per bottle, but who are we to say it’s expensive or affordable? It’s all in each one’s personal preferences.
5. Flor de Caña 4-Year Extra Seco
Coming from Nicaragua, the Flor de Caña 4-Year Extra Seco is a white rum that has spent no less than four years in oak barrels to get to its maturity. That maturity includes sustainable distilling methods and no sugar added, hence the “extra seco” designation.
Therefore, all that delicious sweetness you might feel when trying it out is completely natural and comes from the caramel, the white chocolate, and the orange hints. Some notes of vanilla also surface when you pay enough attention.
4. The Real McCoy 3 Year Old Rum
Basic and light bodied yet well balanced, The Real McCoy 3 Year Old Rum is a superb 40% ABV gift from the revered Foursquare Distillery in Barbados.
Distilled in column and pot stills, aged for three years in Bourbon casks, and charcoal filtered one time, this white rum is the real deal for those looking for an accomplished sipper.
Try it in a cocktail if you wish and you still won’t be disappointed. The notes of coconut, caramel, citrus and banana will empower your favorite cocktail without overpowering it.
3. Wray & Nephew White Overproof Rum
A formidable 126 proof liquor, the Wray & Nephew White Overproof Rum will knock your senses in a very good yet unforeseen way. Despite being distilled at 63% ABV and unaged, this is an exceptionally good sipper.
Your taste buds will thank you for the surprisingly delicious tropical fruit notes, with banana and coconut and vanilla and molasses, and just a tad of funk.
The unexpected taste and easiness of sipping makes this rum unpredictable and powerful. If you want to bring some intensity to your favorite cocktails, this White Overproof Rum from Wray & Nephew is the way to go.
2. Banks Five Island Blend Rum
The Banks Five Island Blend Rum is a mix of 21 different rums sourced from 6 different distilleries situated in five different countries (Trinidad, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, and Java).
The different rums have been barrel aged between three and twelve years before passing through charcoal filters, and have eventually been blended in Amsterdam.
The result is a complex and earthy flavor, with hints of pineapple and pepper. Should you want to choose the perfect cocktail for it, it’s for sure a Piña Colada.
1. Plantation 3 Stars Silver Rum
If you’d want to describe the Plantation 3 Stars Silver Rum in only one word, it would be sophistication. Or finesse. Or refinement. Better even, just try it out.
The price of $20 per bottle doesn’t say too much and you might fall in the trap of considering this rum as simply average. But that’s the least of what it is.
Plantation 3 Stars Silver Rum is a blend of rums from three of the best rum producing countries in the Caribbean area, Trinidad, Barbados, and Jamaica.
The mix features pot and column still rums aged between 0 and 10 years. Filtration is intentionally sort-of left incomplete to give it this silvery, off-white color, and the result is complex and intriguing.
There’s light fruity notes, with pear and mango easily recognized, some floral hints, and a tad of vanilla and brown sugar.
Consume it in a cocktail, or with soda and lime, it makes no difference to its overall character.
Though sitting in the shade of other, more appreciated drinks, such as gins and bourbons, white rum has a unique and boundless personality.
There’s so much variety that we think no liquor drinker will ever be left lacking. The only issue is finding the right white rum for your taste. Or maybe finding your taste for white rum while searching for it.
Either way, we hope we’ve given you a few hints for the directions in which you could conduct your search from here on. Enjoy the journey.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What is considered a white rum?
White rum is mainly characterized by its color, and it can be both aged and unaged. It can range in flavor from sweet to vegetal or fruity, and high-proof to fiery. While some white rums are aged in oak casks, most spend their maturation period in stainless steel tanks and are then filtered to remove the color. They may be double or triple charcoal filtered, aged between 0 and 12 years, and crafted using various distillation techniques.
What is best with white rum?
White rum can be used as an ingredient to craft delicious cocktails, making it an ideal choice for drinks like Mojitos, Piña Coladas, and Daiquiris. Some white rums also make for very good sipping rums, and can be enjoyed with or without a cocktail.
What brands of white rum are there?
Brands of white rum include Brugal, Don Q, Captain Morgan, El Dorado, Probitas, Havana Club, Denizen, Rhum J.M, Bacardí, Ten to One, Flor de Caña, The Real McCoy, Wray & Nephew, Banks, and Plantation.
Is Captain Morgan Spiced rum a white rum?
Captain Morgan Spiced rum is not a white rum, but they do have a great white rum in their lineup that’s perfect for cocktails. Therefore, if you’re only looking for white rums, Captain Morgan Spiced rum is not a good choice .