Updated: May 12, 2019
The Mocambo name makes me think of a rather famous music venue in Toronto, the El Mocambo. Back in the day, some of my favourite blues guitar players like Albert Collins and Stevie Ray Vaughan used to play there. SRV even recorded an album, "Live at the El Mocambo". Many other famous musicians and bands played there, like the Rolling Stones for example. Sadly, I wasn't in Toronto those days and too young for most of these concerts anyway. Someone really needs to invent a time machine so I can go to them. Jimi Hendrix - Band of Gypsys at the Fillmore here I come!
I’ve noticed the striking bottle of Mocambo 20 many years ago as it stands out. It's covered in bark and no two bottles are exactly the same. It's beautiful and a little scary looking at the same time. I’ve never “dared” to buy one though. This is mainly because there isn’t much of a Mexican rum reputation and the lack of enjoyment I get from most rums that come from countries to the south of Mexico in Central and South America. I guess a slight prejudice, which could be very misplaced.
Luckily enough I met a friendly rum enthusiast who happily gave me a sample.
Mocambo is produced by Licores Veracruz and aged in European white oak. They also make vodka, mezcal, tequila and vermouth. Always makes me wonder about quality when rum isn’t the main focus. Let’s see…
Distillery: Licores Veracruz, Mexico
Age: 20 years
Other: It has been suggested this is a molasses and cane juice blend
Wood is quite strong with red wine, vanilla, hint of coffee, caramel and dusty old wood in a barn. It also has a leathery smell that reminds me of being in a 2nd hand clothing store that sells a lot of leather jackets. It’s got a certain bitterness to the smell. Decent nose.
Coffee is strong, hint of earthiness, bitter licorice and wood. The finish is very short and caramel heavy, which is very bitter again. If it has any added sugar it has to be very little.
I’m happy I never bought a full bottle. The nose is quite alright. It’s got some good and some bad to it. The taste is way too bitter. It’s like a blend of coffee, bitter caramel and sand, aged for 6 months in a very active barrel. The finish is similar to standing next to a track at a formula 1 race, waiting for that one particular car.....it’s gone before you know it’s there.
For scoring I compared it to Botran 18, which I reviewed here. Enjoyment wise I rate them about the same. Totally different rums though. The Botran being much lighter, Mocambo a lot more flavourful….I just don’t really like the particular flavours much.
Click here for info on the scoring method.