Rum is a versatile drink that has been popular for centuries. In fact, the first commercial distillery in the world produced this “noble spirit” in the Caribbean in the 1650s. It was clearly beloved because shortly after, rum distilleries opened in the Staten Island and Boston areas and the U.S. began making the spirit in mass quantities. It’s remained popular with pirates and everyday folks ever since.
You may think of daiquiris and mai tais when you think of this liquor, but there are plenty of rums that are great for sipping as well. Here, we’ve put together a list of 10 expensive rums that are worth the splurge.
Price: $74 on Fine Wine House
Angostura is one of the Caribbean’s leading rum producers, and their 1824 offers a unique sipping experience. This is the least expensive out of our list of pricey rums, so it’s great for those who are budgeting but still looking to splurge.
Angostura 1824 is aged for at least a dozen years in charred American oak bourbon barrels and then hand blended and re-casked. The spirit is produced only in limited qualities, and while it’s an incredible rum to enjoy on the rocks, the rich spirit makes a delicious addition to your favorite rum cocktails as well.
Goslings Family Reserve Old Rum
Price: $90 on Reserve Bar
This rum from Goslings Family Reserve acquires its taste from years spent resting in charred oak barrels — similar to many expensive whiskeys worth splurging on. Old Rum is aged between 16 and 19 years and offers a smooth, complex, and almost smokey flavor.
This is an excellent sipping rum and is best served neat or on the rocks. It also happens to boast the title of #1 Aged Rum in the World, an award bestowed to the beverage from the Caribbean Journal.
Bacardi Gran Reserva Limitada
Price: $99 on Reserve Bar
This dark rum is top of the line for Bacardi. It’s on the pricier end for the well-known rum maker, but this limited edition spirit expertly blends Puerto Rican rums, some of which have been aged for up to 17 years. The spirit is crafted to mimic the rum blends the Bicardi family once kept at their own bars.
It’s an ideal sipping spirit with notes of vanilla and spice that maintains a slight oaky taste, reflecting its age.
El Dorado 21 Year
Price: $110 on Drizly
El Dorado takes pride in their delicious aged spirits, which they’ve been perfecting over the past three centuries. A bottle of El Dorado 21 Year will range in price from around $100 to $120, depending on where you buy, but it’s one of those drinks that’ll likely make you feel good about your choice to invest in liquor.
The taste has been described as smooth, sweet, and complex, and while it’s perfect for sipping, connoisseurs will also tell you it makes a mean Rum Old Fashioned.
Price: $150 on Reserve Bar
Speaking of Bacardi, Facundo Exquisito is a rich dark rum blend created as a tribute to Bacardi founder Don Facundo Bacardi Masso. The blending process is truly unique as this drink marries younger rums — aged around 7 years — with matured spirits, aged around 23 years in oak barrels and finished in sherry casks.
After the two are blended, they are stored in sherry casks for at least another month, which leads to a decadent, fruity, yet smokey and mature taste.
Appleton Estate 21 Year
Price: $155 on Total Wine
This aged Jamaican rum is a crowd favorite. Bottles typically cost around $155 depending on where you live, but rum enthusiasts and bartenders alike seem to agree that it’s worth the investment.
Appleton Estate 21 Year is a great sipping rum, particularly for those who enjoy their spirits on the sweeter side, as the taste is thick with notes of cocoa, stewed fruits, and sugar.
Mount Gay 1703 Master Select
Price: $195 on Reserve Bar
Barbados rum maker Mount Gay releases its 1703 Master Select (named after the year they began distilling the spirit) just once per year.
The 1703 is a blend of rums aged 10-30 years that give off both fruity and spicy flavors. With every year’s release, sippers can expect rich notes of almonds, toffee, and figs. A bottle of 1703 is typically around $200.
Price: $263 on Reserve Bar
Diplomático Ambassador boasts a complex and oaky taste after being aged 12 years in white oak barrels, followed by two additional years in Pedro Ximénez sherry casks.
The dark amber rum is bottled directly from the barrel, and enthusiasts applaud it for its rich, complex, and delicious finish. It does tend to run on the pricier side, but fans of the spirit consider it well worth the splurge.
Black Tot Last Consignment Rum
Price: $983 on The Whiskey Exchange
Taking a swig of Black Tot Last Consignment Rum is like gulping down a delicious piece of history. If you can get your hands on a bottle, and are willing to spend almost $1,000, it’ll likely deliver a unique sipping experience.
This spirit was bottled from antique stone flagons and is the last stock of Royal Navy Rum. It’s laid untouched for more than 100 years and much of the spirits come from distilleries that were part of a bygone era.
Havana Club Máximo Extra Anejo
Price: $1,379 on Chelsea Vintners
For those looking to go big, Máximo Extra Anejo is the most expensive rum on our list. Some consider it one of the finest rums to ever be produced, and the long and arduous process of making this spirit means that only 1,000 bottles can be produced per year.
The price comes because of its rarity and the dedication that goes into blending rare rums sourced from Havana Club’s extensive reserve cellars. As far as the taste, prepare for a truly out of this world sipping experience with this dry yet sweet rum. It packs notes of dark chocolate, vanilla, and dried fruits and certainly has the fine reputation that it does for a reason.
Whether you are looking to simply try out rums on the higher end, or are prepared to splurge on the ultimate sipping spirit, each rum on this list comes highly rated from fans of the famous liquor.
If you’re unsure if you want to go all out on purchasing one of these fine bottles without sampling first, you may want to consider a tasting event, which may be offered through distilleries and liquor shops near you. New York City even hosts a Rum Festival every summer, and several other cities across the U.S. have their own versions as well. You may want to use a rewards credit card when shopping to add in additional savings.