A friend of mine went to Guatemala and brought a bottle of Ron Anejo Botran Reserva back for me. It's a blend of different rums aged from five to fourteen years, and you can tell. The result is a great spirit.
As a bit of background, Botran is just one product from the Industrias Licoreras de Guatemala, a distillery that makes 12 different rums, most under the Botran name but also under Ron Zacapa. Yes, you have probably heard of them. According to Guatemala's Ministry of Rum (yes, there is such a thing!), the Industrias Licoreras de Guatemala is the only official rum producer in Guatemala, the rest being cane spirits called aguardiente. The Industrias Licoreras de Guatemala is a conglomeration of local rums that came together in 1948. Botran is now imported and available in most places through the Distillnation group.
And they make good stuff. The Botran Reserva is no exception. It smells like bananas and tastes like sugar cane. There are hints of other fruits, such as papaya. The rum coats the mouth and leaves its lingering burnt sugar taste, which is tastier than I can describe, like a bananas foster in a high-end French restaurant in New Orleans. It is sweet at first, but then its lingering taste is more burnt with a hint of smokiness. I will be enjoying this one on a large ice cube or neat, toasting my friend and his honeymoon.
Here's to marriage! Or at least to traveling to Guatemala to celebrate it.