Holiday Gift Giving Guide: Doorly’s XO

How can I put this? Well, you have rums, good rums, really good rums and then you have Barbados’ own Doorly’s XO. This rum is off the charts good. One of the first things I noticed when I first cracked open the bottle was the aroma; unlike the seductively sweet nose of an El Dorado rum, Doorly’s was light and buttery. I don’t remember ever smelling a rum quite like it.

Of course all that aromatic goodness is meaningless if the taste and the finish of the rum leave something to be desired. And Doorly’s leaves nothing to be desired except the urge to drink more and more. The light, buttery scent gives way to rum that is very subtle, very smooth with a slight nuttiness to its flavour.

As for the finish, it is clean, warm and subtle, capping the tasting experience the way a fine dessert punctuates a wonderful meal. Speaking of desserts, the LCBO recommends pairing this rum with pecan pie or a fruitcake. I can’t say that I disagree, but I must add that Doorly’s XO is a wonderful rum to sip and one imagines it would make a nice addition to a rum punch.

Let me add a personal anecdote. Just last week, my cousin Stitchie celebrated his birthday, and we got together with our friend Mas’ Robbie to commemorate the day in grand style. Now, Stitchie is quite jingoistic about his rum. If it’s not Jamaican rum, he’s not really checking for it. Through the years I’ve been able to get him to sample the odd non-Jamaican rum, but for the most part it’s Jamaica or bust.

I cracked open a bottle of Doorly’s and asked Stitchie if he wanted to try it. He grudgingly accepted, but only after I informed him I didn’t have any Appleton rum on hand. A couple of refills later Stitchie was converted. I’m fairly certain that if I hadn’t put away my bottle, he’d still be in my living room drinking my rum. And can you get a greater endorsement that?

Anyway, this is a holiday gift guide after all and I must furnish you with my final verdict: There will be no equivocation. Doorly’s XO is a champ. The LCBO is selling it for $33.50 and it is worth every penny. This rum would make a fine gift for the novice or the connoisseur.

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