Some Rum too : Havana Club Tributo 2018

Not a lot of Rum reviews on the blog, but with the soaring popularity of rums, I am going to start posting some Rum notes as well. This one’s not an indie bottler or a boutique rum, but it is a very limited edition from the well known Havana Club brand. So what is this new Rum?

Havana Club, has recently unveiled the first ever prestige Cuban rum to be finished in smoky whisky casks – Havana Club Tributo 2018. The rum is the third installment in the Tributo collection, a series of annual releases that pay tribute to the different elements of the authentic Cuban rum production process. The new expression was released in Cuba at the Cigar Habanos Festival week , this is  a limited release of 2,500 bottles globally.

Havana Club Tributo 2018 honours the cask’s crucial role in the rum production process, showcasing the complex taste that maturation in oak casks adds to the original sugarcane distillate. The expression has been crafted from a new blend of the finest rum reserves by Havana Club’s Masters of Cuban rum, who continue to safeguard the lineage and the refined superiority of the Tributo range of prestige rums.

Asbel Morales, Havana Club Maestro del Ron Cubano, hand-selected the blended rums drawn from precious 60-year-old casks and part finished them in barrels that had previously held smoky malts.  60 year old casks, does not mean the Rum itself is 60 year old.. no. It just means they are using very old casks, which are not very active as to let the spirit shine without getting too much of the wood notes.

Havana Club Tributo is presented in a luxury wooden box, crafted in white wood that communicates the quality of the Tributo range and reinforces the role of the oak in the 2018 edition. Each bottle is numbered and personalized with Maestro del Ron Cubano, Asbel Morales´s signature, to provide the ultimate guarantee of quality. Tributo 2018 is bottled at 40% ABV, and will be available in 21 markets, five more than last edition, from March 2018 at the RRP of 400 EUR …

It all seems lovely, but 40 % abv for a 400 quid Rum? I would have wanted to see this released a bit higher in ABV , as it’s a premium product. Don’t you agree?


Havana Club Tributo 2018 edition, 40 % abv, 400 EUR

Nose : lovely old wood, leather and sour-ish balsamic vinegar, sweet wine, and wood spices mainly cinnamon, sultana and a very subtle note of smoke,and old furniture.
Palate: nice smoky edge to it, a bit more smoke than can be detected on the nose. Rich fruity, mainly dark stewed fruit, sultana and more sweet smoke,  a hint of Lapsang tea, Clove and cinnamon, plums and Demerara sugar.
Finish: chocolate, smoke, black tea, sultana and spice. Lovely interplay of smoke and the fruit.


This is a delicious rum indeed, I am not sure how much sugar is added, but it does tastes rich , and the smoky casks did enhance it in a subtle and balanced way, yet the smoke is evident. Not quite sure i am getting the iodine and seaweed here, but at any rate, the wood notes are lovely, and it’s a pleasure to sip on the liquid. at 400 Eur, you can certainly find lovely IB Rums, from Caroni and elsewhere which will display smoky characters as well, but this one’s a great gift to someone who appreciates good Rum, and Havana Club is a well-known Brand indeed. Good stuff, and highly interesting with the ex-peated cask finish.

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