This impossibly dark rum, almost the color of maple syrup, offers a nose of smoke and thick molasses. There’s a good bit of fire on first sip, but things mellow out quickly, leaving behind a finish of honey and chocolate, dried fruit, and sweet caramel. It goes down easy, and were it not for that persistent, jarring initial kick of heat, it’d be just about perfect.
Also of note is the bottle, which you can’t miss on the shelf. Covered with a spidery web of bark, the bottle is packaged in a “pre-Hispanic art form” made from fibers from the Amate tree, courtesy of Mexican artist Victor Fernandez Limon. It’s a very striking effect, one that makes these bottles (each hand-numbered) as much a work of art on the outside as on the inside.
A- / $40 / licoresveracruz.com