Pretty much the same situation as before with El Dorado: both the Matusalem 15 and the Matusalem 18 fit my criteria for the World Cup, but only one can participate, so this is going to be settled in the tasting ring. Same setup too: glasses labeled “A” and “B”, different rums poured in each, mix them up, and voila: blind tasting.
The first one had a great opening with strong hints of vanilla and caramel, a bit dry, but still able to coat the mouth nicely. There was some hotness in the middle as the alcohol evaporated inside my mouth, but it was all pretty mellow and smooth, with just a bit of spice. The end had what I guess I would describe as a little leather in it, but still with some sweetness, and maybe a bit of butter? Very pleasant.
The second one, was… well… almost the same. I did detect a bit of a wood flavor (I always think”oak”, but I don’t really know what different woods taste like…) and a stronger leathery feel to it. It was also a little dryer. The end had that same buttery taste to it (butterscotch maybe?). The differences were quite subtle, though, it was definitely rum from the same line… and I was at a real loss to figure out which was which.
Again, I gave the advantage to the first one. I think the second one was just a slight bit dryer and it had more of that wood and leather taste… which I don’t think really added to the experience. I do have to emphasize that these differences were only found because I was really looking for them… they were hardly there. If I had to guess, I would say Matusalem 18 was the first one.
I flipped the glasses and Matusalem 15 turned out to be first one. Wrong again. Ha, I guess I am really bad at this. Nothing a little practice won’t fix.
I poured about another ounce of each and tasted them again. To be honest, it was even harder to notice those differences this time around, but a call had been made, and without undisputable evidence to reverse it, the call on the field must stand. The winner is Matusalem 15.
Next up: Sibling Rivalry Part 3: Flor de Caña