Review: Old Monk XXX

Rating: ★★½☆☆
Old Monk XXX

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from Internet Wines and Spirits

What is it with eastern Indians and pornographic rum? Really, I have only two rums in my collection from India, and both are labeled as being XXX. Old Monk rum, I notice, is aged seven years, which is admirable. But seven years is hardly “old”, and certainly not old enough to participate in XXX endeavours. But I digress…

Old Monk Rum comes in a squat, rotund, uniquely textured bottle that makes it stand out from many of its contemporaries on the liquor shelves. The label features a smiling, rather european looking monk, and in big red letters features the aforementioned XXX. In the glass, Old Monk is a rich amber. To the nose it smells of the distant, candy sweetness common amongst sugarcane-juice frenchy rums, rather than the embracing, robust sweetness of molasses real rums. It lightly burns the back of the nasal cavity, and also carries hints of charred leather and cherry cordial (seriously.)

As is common with rums, it tastes much as it smells – no real char here, but the cherry cordial does indeed make itself known. A pleasant burning, tingly sensation dominates the experience, and remains a surprisingly long time following that first swallow.

Old Monk Rum lacks many of the warmer, deeper elements I generally prefer in my rums. But judged for it’s own qualities, it’s somewhat decent. It’s also a very affordable rum, so I recommend checking it out, if the opportunity presents.

Comments (15)

  1. James

    Do you recommend this rum neat?

  2. Bilge (Post author)

    Neat is how I tried it, but it didn’t exactly blow me away. I’d say try it neat at first (always my prefered method to start with a rum) and then experiment with a little ice and see how it opens up.

  3. whereisthecap

    alright taste, but where the hell is the cap, woke up the next morning and the whole apartment smelled like very strong chemicals I would recommend mixing this rum with brisk ice

  4. Sparky

    Yes, I agree with BM, at first opening the smell is very pleasant cherry, candy. Why no cork? And uninspiring almost outdated label art. Overall being generous 4 stars. Good quality for the price.

  5. petey

    I love this rum, almost as good as african Safari Dark rum. Only available in Niarobi Kenya, Petty.

  6. Capn Jimbo

    At The Rum Project Forum, we’ve long been a big fan of the Bilgemunkey, a man among men, and one who doesn’t pull any punches. His tastes and mine sail the same seas.

    I have long been a proponent of honesty in rum. Most rums are secretly adulterated, alterated and altered. Age statements are misleading (especially those of “solera” rums). Accordingly, rum will never seriously compete with say, single malts etc., as a noble spirit.

    Fortunately there are flavored rums that say so. Old Monk XXX is one. And the flavoring is authentic and beautifully represents the tastes of its rather unusual origin – India. This is an exceptional flavored rum that compares favorably with Richard Seales Four Square, or Barbancourt’s amazing Pango.

    We reviewed it here:

    http://rumproject.com/rumforum//posting.php?mode=newtopic&f=8

    This is an underrated rum that deserves as much attention here as it does in India.

    CJ

  7. Duck

    The seven year blend is ok, but it’s outright piss compared to the 12 year blend. I just wish I could find it here… =(
    I drink the 7 neat, the 12 on ice as it’s a little thicker rum. Love this stuff, my favorite hands down.

  8. J Blake

    My rum closet only got better with this fine Eastern rum – like raw silk, smooth but with some texture. The scent and taste of vanilla with a follow on touch of heat make it a nice alterantive to the western kind. Don’t disturb it with ice or mixers of any kind. Sip it neat one finger or less at a time.

  9. sam

    you might want to try old monk with a spot of lime juice and a decent measure of cola.
    i have seen some navy guys stir whole slit chilli pepper in them too, didn’t try though!!

    overall a drink worth more than its money.

  10. prashanta kumar sethy

    old monk rum is one of the royal drinks of the world. I give many many thankx that person who invented the old monk rum. I enjoying with this drinks before 16 years.

  11. sajan

    Old monk is very nice… rum enjoy every moments with old monk.

  12. Srinivas

    It is recommended to take with little cola… tastes amazing!
    Tastes good and value for money.
    -Cheers

  13. oscar

    He guys,

    Proud to read the comments on Old Monk Rhum. Thanks for it, especially when you thing I’m the importor for the world.

    There is enough in my warehouse in The Netherlands, so if somebody wants some ?

    Cheers Oscar

  14. Cocktail Enthusiast

    I’m a big fan of using Old Monk in daiquiris. Just a simple, traditional daiquiri composed of rum, lime and sugar. The sweet, butterscotch characteristics come through beautifully, yielding a very tasty daiquiri with lots of depth, but one that still maintains its classic cocktail integrity.

  15. Rum Drinker

    Old Monk is good but I recently tasted XXX Rum from Bhutan which was even better. Price is lower. Rum enthusiast must taste atleast once!

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