About Mount Gay
Rum is a liquor with a Caribbean heritage. When people drink it, they think of clear waters and white sands, pirates sailing 18th century seas, and slow days with no time constraints. There are many styles and flavors of rum, but to taste a rum is to experience a location. And to taste Barbados, look no further than Mount Gay Rum.
Mount Gay is the oldest rum in the world, and not only in name. They have used the same well to source their water, the same sugarcane, and the same basic recipe for over three centuries, enjoyed by kings, presidents, and pirates alike.
How Mount Gay Rum is Made
Mount Gay is rooted in tradition, every step of the way. The rum begins with coal-filtered water straight from their original and only well mixed with a signature strain of yeast and pure sugar cane molasses to ferment. The Bajan air circulates through this process, releasing the flavors of the terroir.
Mount Gay distillers then use copper pot stills to double-distill the fermented sugar cane in column stills using generational secrets that set this rum apart from any others. Pot stills are a trademark of rum making, but the details in Mount Gay’s distilling processes are their own and have been for over three-hundred years.
In Mount Gay rums, first and second distillation rums are blended and aged together, producing a unique flavor unlike any other. Mount Gay’s master blender ensures American whiskey, bourbon, and cognac oak barrels are expertly utilized in the aging process to produce specific flavor profiles, drawing distinct flavors and notes from the sugar cane liquor.
Once the rums are blended and aged to perfection, they are tested by the master blender and bottled to be shipped around the world, enjoyed for the tradition, heritage, and notoriety of Mount Gay Rum.
Where to Buy Mount Gay Rum
Mount Gay ranges from mid to top shelf, and is sold where fine rums are found. They can occasionally be found at markets like Costco and Kroger in the liquor section, and are reliably found in large liquor stores and at online retailers. To find Mount Gay near you, search drizly.com for the variety that suits your palate and budget.
Mount Gay Rum Prices
|Mount Gay: Silver||40% (80 proof)||750 ml||$24.00|
|Mount Gay: Eclipse Hertiage Blend||40% (80 proof)||50 ml||$3.00|
|Mount Gay: Black Barrel||43% (86 proof)||750 ml||$51.00|
|Mount Gay: XO||43% (86 proof)||750 ml||$65.00|
|Mount Gay: 1703 Master Select||45% (90 proof)||750 ml||$201.00|
|The Master Blender Collection|
|Mount Gay: Andean Oak Cask||48% (96 proof)||750 ml||$190.00|
|Mount Gay: The Port Cask Expression||55% (110 proof)||750 ml||$169.00|
|Mount Gay: Pot Still Rum||40% (80 proof)||750 ml||$210.00|
|Mount Gay: XO Peat Smoke Expression||57% (114 proof)||750 ml||$300.00|
|Mount Gay Rum Tasting Set||Various||250 ml||$60.00|
Mount Gay Buying Guide
There are several Mount Gay selections to choose from, so let’s explore their differences to help you choose your perfect bottle.
Eclipse is designed to be the emblematic blend of Mount Gay: the standard by which to measure all other rums. This means it’s a straight rum-like style: not too smokey, not extra aged, not too young, but simple, clean, and aromatic. It tastes like sugar cane liquor, through and through.
This medium bodied rum has a long finish and a warm, oaky, buttery, raisined fruit flavor. This bold rum is matured in American whiskey casks for that full flavor, and it’s finished in heavily-charred casks to add that hint of smoke.
XO, in the world of rum, means “extra old”. It means it’s been aged longer than other rums for a complex maturity. The age increases the complexity of the rum and gives it a rounded quality, enhancing notes and flavors of vanilla, spice, and oak. This XO rum has a smooth, creamy finish.
If you’re interested in vintage rums, this is the one for you. This annual release highlights the terroir and distillation season because each year the master blender sets aside the finest rums, marking them for blending into this annual release. This rich and lingering blend is aged in new American oak barrels to preserve the true flavor of the rum. It’s finished in sherry casks for added complexity.
Mount Gay’s silver rum is double-distilled for the smoothest finish in a white rum yet. This bright, light bodied rum tastes of ripe fruit, toffee, and butterscotch but smells of citrus, floral, and grapefruit. The bright smell and warm flavor contribute to this one of a kind silver rum, inspired by Mount Gay Master Blender, Trudiann Branker’s, personal heritage.
This line of rums is where Master Blender, Trudiann Branker, comes out to play. She is given full creative control of these rums and uses her experience and skill to produce one of a kind small batches utilizing unique casks, blends, aging processes, and filtration techniques. These limited releases are truly special, and if you’re a sipper-taster they are the perfect addition to your collection.
The Best Way(s) to Drink Mount Gay
Mount Gay, as a heritage rum, is meant to be savored. While some of their larger-batch rums are excellent for adding depth and complexity to a classic cocktail, still others are meant to be enjoyed on their own or in the simplest mixtures.
Mount Gay Cocktails
1) Summer Honey Old Fashioned
- 45ml / 1.5oz XO
- 1 bar spoon of honey syrup
- 2 dashes of Angostura Bitters
- Ice cubes
- Burnt orange zest
Pour all ingredients into a rocks glass. Fill with ice, stir thoroughly (about 20-30 rounds) and serve with an orange twist garnish.
2) Bridgetown Sour
- 50ml / 1.5oz Black Barrel
- 25ml / 0.75oz fresh lime juice
- 10ml 0.5oz vanilla syrup
- 10ml / 0.5oz almond syrup
- 1 dash Angostura Bitters
Shake all ingredients hard on ice until a froth forms. Strain into a coupette glass to serve(a coupe will do if you don’t have coupettes handy).
3) The Original Rum Punch by Mount Gay
- 45ml / 1.5oz Eclipse
- 22.5ml / 0.75oz sugar syrup
- 15ml / 0.5oz fresh lime juice
- 90ml / 3oz water
- 1 dash Angostura Bitters
- Lime or orange wedges
- Freshly grated nutmeg
Add all ingredients into a highball glass and fill with crushed ice. Stir thoroughly with a bar spoon (20-30 rounds) and serve with grated nutmeg on top.
4) Orange Eclipse
- 2oz Eclipse
- 1oz Blood Orange Juice
- .5oz Sweet Vermouth
- 4 dashes of Angostura Bitters
Shake all ingredients hard on ice. Garnish with an orange twist and serve.
5 Best Things to Mix with Mount Gay
Mount Gay is arguably best enjoyed simply, thanks to the different flavors, notes, and overall experiences of their different rums. Here are some of the best single mixers to enjoy with Mount Gay.
- Rocks: We usually wouldn’t add rocks on the list as a single mixer, but Mount Gay deserves an unadulterated experience. Rocks will chill and lightly water down a fine rum, and you’ll taste every part of the experience, no distractions.
- Sour: With Mount Gay’s lighter rums, a splash of sour will compliment but not take too much away from the flavors and notes at hand.
- Coconut water: Water is an obvious choice for any fine liquor, but coconut water adds just a little something extra in the way of tropical flavor, plus extra electrolytes for hydration.
- Grapefruit: Grapefruit juice with rum immediately tastes more complex than it is. Grapefruit adds several layers of flavor on its own, but it’s light and airy enough to let the Mount Gay shine through.
- Ginger beer: For a classic, top your Mount Gay on the rocks with ginger beer. Best with darker rums, but also good with Mount Gay’s silver rum.
Alternatives to Mount Gay Rum
Mount Gay isn’t available in every liquor store all the time, so here are some good Mount Gay alternatives to try when you can’t get your hands on it.
- Foursquare Port Cask Finish: $55.00- Mount Gay currently has a port cask finished rum in its Master Blender Collection lineup, but for a more affordable introduction into this style consider another Bajan favorite, Foursquare’s Port Cask Finish.
- Old Brigand Black Label Rum: $75- For another Bajan rum similar to Mount Gay Black Barrel, consider Old Brigand’s Black Label Rum. It’s not quite as stout or smoky, but this is a fitting rum if you’re interested in something strong and want to experience the taste of Barbados.
- Ron Zacapa XO: $78- Ron Zacapa is another rum with a fascinating backstory, but from Guatemala. Both are terroir driven rums, so you’ll taste the difference in location. The distillation and aging methods for Ron Zacapa XO and Mount Gay XO are similar, so you’ll taste some similarities as well.
- St Nicholas Abbey 5 Year Traditional Pot Rum: $105- St Nicholas Abbey is another rum emblematic of Barbados. This rum is a heritage rum like Mount Gay Eclipse Heritage, but it’s made from white rum aged for 5 years in bourbon barrels.
- Dos Maderas “Luxus” Double Aged Rum: $130- Dos Maderas and Mount Gay have Barbados in common, but Dos Maderas mixes rum from Guyana into their mixtures. This rum is aged for five years in the Caribbean and is then moved to Spain to finish in sherry casks.