This is a review I’ve been putting off for quite some time now, for different reasons. First of all, I do not review liqueurs. Cyril has found out, that Don Papa has 2.4 g/l added glycerol, 29 g/l added sugar and…wait for it…359 g/l added vanillin. This last number is extremely high. Another Rum known for a lot added vanillin is Diplomático Reserva which has “only” 4.8 g/l added vanillin. That is almost a 100 times less! (However, Diplomático has even more added sugar than Don Papa; 44.1 g/l), but if you lace it with vanillin, who cares anymore about the sugar? So, for me, with these kinds of numbers, this simply isn’t a Rum, and according to laws in many countries this isn’t even allowed to be called a Rum. Still it is sold everywhere, so much for enforcement and protecting the public.
I do not dislike sweetness in drinks. Not at all, I like a good PX Sherry, and other kinds of good, sweet fortified and normal wines. But that’s about it. Apart from some exceptions obviously, I don’t have a sweet tooth. There are some styles of Rums that can be sweeter than others, but that goes with the territory. Some Rums can have added sugar somewhere in the production process but that doesn’t necessarily mean, they are bad, or taste bad, although sometimes they are. However, considering the data, it seems to me Don Papa isn’t a Rum, and therefore I didn’t feel the need to review it. On the other hand, since it claims to be a Rum, and I can’t review Rums here without some oddballs now can I? But the best reason for waiting so long is, what if…I like it! The horror! The shame! I might just like it, never to be taken seriously anymore. On the other hand, to be taken serious is highly overrated, don’t you think? Do you want to be taken seriously?
Many reviews have surfaced since Don Papa landed in the west and they haven’t been mild, some reviewers fell ill, some are dead, some have lost their palate, some have lost their minds and subsequently their wives and some were able to unblock pipes that seemed blocked forever. There are even reports that it also functions quite well as motor oil. Why should I review something with only one other positive fact, the utterly gorgeous label! I’m not an art critic. But worse, what if I like it!
Taste: Sweet (very).
Well, only if you are the worlds biggest fan of synthetic vanilla or artificial baking products, this is for you. You know these small bottles of artificial Rum flavours you can get for backing cakes, this is it. It’s really like reviewing that stuff. So I guess my next review will be of a chunk of marzipan or sugared artificial cherries, made of artificial sugar. Sure we like baking cakes, and brownies. We don’t mind it contains 75% sugar, we’ll still eat them. Don Papa is like that, the smells are nice, it’s only vanilla, so its nice, and its sweet, and the world will eat anything if its sweet, that’s why the sugar industry is ruling the world. Just find out for yourself how much sugar Cola contains (and how much acid is needed to hide that sugar from you). Acid, not good for your teeth. So a nice smell, but in no way this is a Rum. Calling this a Rum is disrespectful, offensive, maddening and criminal. Call it an (artificial) liqueur and it is borderline ok. Just remember you are being duped big time. If you bought it, tell people because, just like me, you adored the label.
Points: 43, since it is essentially a liqueur, and most definitely not a Rum.
Big thanks go out to two people from the Rum bloggers community, telling me they miss me and urging me to write more Rum reviews. This one if for you Lance and Wes! I’m back!