Ron Diplomatico Blanco

by Matt Robold on November 3, 2009

Post image for Ron Diplomatico Blanco

Ron Diplmomatico Blanco is the newest rum to be brought to us by Distilerias Unidas in Venezuela.  For over 50 years the distillery in La Miel has produced several lines of rums which can be found all over the world.

The Ron Diplomatico line of products has long had shelf-space in my collection.  The Reserva Exclusiva is a personal favorite and I was first exposed to the new Blanco rum in London at the 2008 UK Rumfest.

It has taken some time, but the Diplomatico Blanco has made its way to the shores of the USA.  According to Distlilerias Unidas, the rum is distilled 4 times before being aged for up to 6 years in oak casks and then blended and filtered through 5 runs of charcoal to strip all color from the spirit – leaving it clear, crisp, and light bodied.

Appearances

The rum is almost perfectly clear.  There is no discernible green tinge that you sometimes find with oak-aged white spirits.  When swirled in the glass the legs form thickly and very slowly work their way down into the bowl.

Nose

A quick whiff from the glass tells us that this is a very light-bodied rum.  Light, sugary notes are the first to hit the nose, followed by some very floral top notes.  There’s a touch of caramel just underneath those flowery scents.  The nose is nice, but very delicate and light.

Palate

At first taste the Diplomatico Blanco is sweet.  “Sugar!” is the first thought that crosses your mind on your initial sip.  The sweet entry is followed by a rather surprisingly savory mid-palate.  Butter and vanilla seem to arise very pleasantly out of nowhere.  The flavor is light, but much richer than expected based on the nose.  At the back of the palate you find citrus notes of lime and lemon peel before a very nice and soft finish with no burn.

While richer than expected based on the nose, the flavor of the rum is still considerably light and delicate.  The umami (savory) characteristics of the mid-palate are a very welcome surprise on the tongue.  Without them the rum would be almost completely lost after the first, sugary taste.

Mixing

The lightness of the Ron Diplomatico Blanco means that it should work in any drink that showcases the rum above all else.  Cocktails using strongly-flavored ingredients will likely overwhelm the delicacy of the Blanco, leaving you searching your palate for that rum you spent close to $40US on.

The drinks I’d highly recommend for the Blanco are:

  • Daiquiri (a no-brainer, really)
  • Mojito (again, easy call)
  • Hemmingway Daiquiri (go light on the maraschino)
  • Rum Julep
  • Rum Rose

All of the above-mentioned cocktails are perfect for a light-bodied rum with sugary but delicate flavors.  Of course, I had to find one more, so I decided I’d make up a drink that was developed by Matt Wallace at Seven Grand, my favorite Whiskey Bar in LA (yes, a rum drink developed in a whiskey bar – you can’t escape rum).

Lilly Blossom CocktailLilly Blossom
Matt Wallace of Seven Grand, LA

2 oz White Rum
1 oz Lillet Blanc
.75 oz Lime Juice
.75 oz Honey Syrup
2 drops Orange Flower Water
2 sprigs Mint

Muddle 1 sprig of mint with syrup and rum in your mixing glass, add the remaining ingredients and shake with ice.  Strain over ice into a Double Old Fashioned glass, garnish with mint.

The Long & The Short Of It

Ron Diplomatico Blanco is a superb white rum.  It is clean, sweet, and floral – all things you would want from a white rum, and without any harsh alcohol burn at the finish.  This is easily an enjoyable sipping rum, not unlike Oronoco, though somewhat limited when it comes to mixing.

I do have to admit that I’m curious about the production process.  The savory quality of the rum is completely unexpected in a spirit that gets distilled 4 times and filtered another 5.  It’s a process I’d definitely like to learn more about.  Until I can find a way to get to Venezuela though, I’ll just have to settle for exploring the rum in my glass.

Dood’s Rating: 4 Bottles of Rum Out of 5

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Other Reviews of Diplomatico Blanco

Refined Vices
A Drink With Forrest
Waylaid In The West Indies

{ 4 comments }

Jeffrey Morgenthaler November 3, 2009 at 3:41 pm

Nice review, Matt.

I just had this last week at RumFest and was really impressed with it – and the entire line of Diplomatico rums. The only thing that bothered me – if I’m remembering correctly – is that this is really quite expensive for a blanco, no?

Matt Robold November 3, 2009 at 3:52 pm

$40US is pretty steep for a blanco, but this is one of those new-breed “aged blancos” where they age it for much more than the usual year to year and a half and then go through extensive filtering to remove the color – which is why the rum is so exceptionally smooth compared to most other whites. If you were to look for another similar rum in terms of “premium aged white rum” you’d have to look to Oronoco out of Brazil. I’m not aware of many others.

This is definitely a rum that was meant for sipping or for use in very delicate cocktails – I don’t think using it in a Cuba Libre is something I’d recommend. ;)

JanRene Ashman November 5, 2009 at 6:31 pm

Thank you for the review Matt.

I haven’t had the chance to try this one yet but I am very excited to now.

Have you tried the EL Dorado 3 Year Cask Aged Demerara White Rum. This rum is also aged and then filtered clear. At first sip you taste “sugar cane”. Like you just took a bite into piece of cane. Also, very smooth and makes for a sipping rum. This was the first clear Rum I have tasted that really enjoyed.

Matt Robold November 5, 2009 at 8:55 pm

I have had the El Dorado 3. I haven’t had a chance to write a review of it yet, but it’s one of my favorite white rums. You’d be hard-pressed to find a similar intersection of quality, fun, and flavor to what El Dorado 3 achieves.

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