Best Rum for Tiki Drink Recipes

Unless you live and breathe rum 24×7, knowing what category a rum belongs to can be challenging. It’s even more challenging when you add in the complexity of tiki cocktails, which can vary widely in how they specify rums. Smuggler’s Cove has a popular categorization system. Our Minimalist Tiki has it’s own categorization system which is based on flavor profile rather than how the rum is made.

To help people out, I’ve made the following sortable and filterable table (see below) that makes it easy to:

  • Find generally available rums that will work well in classic tiki recipes
  • Match a rum to a Minimalist Tiki category
  • See a variety of rums within the same Minimalist Tiki category.

Important Disclaimers

  • This list is not comprehensive. It only contains rums that in (my opinion) someone might reasonably use in a Tiki recipe.
  • It does not include rums only available in limited markets, e.g. “craft” rums. The rums here are typically exported to multiple countries.
  • It does not include expensive rums, e.g. US $75 or more. If you want to use a $100 21-year rum in your drink, by all means! But I will assume you know which category it belongs to.
  • It does not included limited releases, especially vintage, independently bottled releases.
  • It does not include spiced, flavored, and other “unusual” rums
  • The Minimalist Tiki Categories intentionally do not cover every rum on the planet. Rather, they focus on rum styles typically used in Tiki recipe.
  • If you want to map a rum to a Minimalist Tiki category, check out this flowchart.
  • If you’re wondering about certain Appleton rums listed as “moderately aged” rather than “aged Jamaican”, in the book I stated that some Appleton rums are lower in the “funk” that is associated with Jamaican rum, so may be a better fit in the moderately aged category. Use your own judgement – this is simply my opinion.
BrandExpressionMinimalist Tiki
Abuelo7 YearModerately Aged4
Abuelo12 YearModerately Aged4
AbueloAnejoModerately Aged
AngosturaWhite Oak / ReservaLightly Aged/Filtered
Angostura5 YearModerately Aged4
Angostura7 YearModerately Aged4
Angostura1919Moderately Aged4
Angostura1824Moderately Aged4
Appleton EstateSignature BlendAged Jamaican2
Appleton EstateReserve BlendModerately Aged3
Appleton EstateRare BlendModerately Aged3
AvuaAmburanaAged Agricole
AvuaPrataUnaged Agricole
BacardiSuperiorLightly Aged/Filtered
BacardiReserva OchoModerately Aged4
BacardiGoldModerately Aged
BacardiBlackModerately Aged
BacardiAnejo CuatroModerately Aged
Banks5 IslandLightly Aged/Filtered2
Banks7 IslandModerately Aged2
BarbancourtWhiteLightly Aged/Filtered
Barbancourt5 StarModerately Aged
Barbancourt3 StarModerately Aged
BlackwellGoldAged Jamaican
BotranReservaModerately Aged4
BountyWhite Lightly Aged/Filtered
BountyPremium GoldModerately Aged
BountyPremium DarkModerately Aged
BrugalBlanco SupremoLightly Aged/Filtered
BrugalExtra ViejoModerately Aged4
Brugal1888Moderately Aged4
BrugalAnejoModerately Aged
BrugalXVModerately Aged
CalicheLightly Aged/Filtered
Chairman's ReserveSilverLightly Aged/Filtered2
Chairman's ReserveOriginalModerately Aged
Chairman's ReserveForgotten CaskModerately Aged
ClementV.S.O.P.Aged Agricole8
ClementSelect BarrelAged Agricole
ClementCanne BleueUnaged Agricole
CockspurFineModerately Aged2
CorubaDark JamaicanAged Jamaican5
CruzanEstate Diamond LightLightly Aged/Filtered
CruzanEstate Diamond DarkLightly Aged/Filtered
CruzanAged Light RumLightly Aged/Filtered
CruzanSingle BarrelModerately Aged4
CruzanAged Dark RumModerately Aged
DamoiseauV.S.O.P.Aged Agricole
DenizenAged WhiteLightly Aged/Filtered2
DenizenVattedModerately Aged
DenizenMerchant's ReserveModerately Aged3
Diamond ReserveDarkAged Demerara
Diamond ReserveWhiteAged Demerara
Diamond Reserve151Overproof Demerara
Diplomatico PlanasLightly Aged/Filtered
Diplomatico MantuanoModerately Aged
Diplomatico Reserva ExclusivaModerately Aged
Two JamesDoctor BirdAged Jamaican
Don QCristalLightly Aged/Filtered
Don QReserva 7Moderately Aged4
Don QGran ReservaModerately Aged4
Don QGoldModerately Aged
Doorly'sWhiteLightly Aged/Filtered
Doorly's5 YearModerately Aged3
Doorly'sXOModerately Aged3
Doorly's8 YearModerately Aged
Doorly's 12 YearModerately Aged3
Dos Maderas5+3Moderately Aged3
Dos Maderas5+5Moderately Aged3
El Dorado3 YearLightly Aged/Filtered2
El Dorado5 YearAged Demerara3
El Dorado8 YearAged Demerara3
El Dorado12 YearAged Demerara3
El Dorado15 YearAged Demerara
English Harbour5 YearModerately Aged4
Flor de Caña4 Extra SecoLightly Aged/Filtered
Flor de Caña12Moderately Aged4
Flor de Caña18Moderately Aged
Flor de Caña4 Anejo OroModerately Aged
Flor de Caña5 Anejo ClassicoModerately Aged
Flor de Caña7 Gran ReservaModerately Aged
Flor de CañaPerfect 10Moderately Aged
Gosling'sBlack SealModerately Aged5
HamiltonGuyana 151 Overproof Demerara6
HamiltonGuyana 86Aged Demerara5
HamiltonJamaica BlackUnaged Jamaican5
HamiltonJamaica GoldUnaged Jamaican
Havana Club3 YearLightly Aged/Filtered
Havana Club7 YearModerately Aged
Havana ClubAnejoModerately Aged
Havana ClubEspecialModerately Aged
J. WrayGoldAged Jamaican
J. WraySilverAged Jamaican or Lightly Aged/Filtered
J.MV.S.O.P.Aged Agricole8
J.MVOAged Agricole
J.MWhite 50%Unaged Agricole7
J.MWhite 40%Unaged Agricole
J.MBlanc 110 ProofUnaged Agricole
Kingston 62GoldAged Jamaican
Kingston 62WhiteAged Jamaican
La FavoriteAmbreAged Agricole8
La FavoriteBlancUnaged Agricole7
Lemon Hart151 Overproof Demerara6
Lemon Hart1804Aged Demerara5
MonymuskSpecial GoldAged Jamaican
MonymuskPlatinumAged Jamaican
MonymuskClassic GoldAged Jamaican
MonymuskSpecial ReserveAged Jamaican
MonymuskWhite OverproofUnaged Jamaican Overproof
Mount GayEclipseModerately Aged2
Mount GayBlack BarrelModerately Aged3
Mount GayXOModerately Aged3
Myers'sJamaican DarkAged Jamaican
NeissonEleve Sous BoisAged Agricole8
NeissonBlackUnaged Agricole7
Novo FogoGoldAged Agricole
Novo FogoSilverUnaged Agricole
Old SamDemerara Aged Demerara
PlantationXaymacaAged Jamaican
Plantation3 StarLightly Aged/Filtered2
PlantationGrande Reserve 5 YearModerately Aged3
PlantationIsle of FijiModerately Aged
PlantationBarbados 5 YearModerately Aged
PlantationOriginal DarkModerately Aged
PlantationXOModerately Aged
PlantationO.F.T.D. Overproof6
Pusser's(Blue Label)Moderately Aged3
Pusser'sGunpowder ProofModerately Aged
Real McCoy3 YearLightly Aged/Filtered2
Real McCoy5 YearModerately Aged3
Real McCoy12 YearModerately Aged3
Ron del Barrilito3 StarModerately Aged4
Ron del Barrilito2 StarModerately Aged
Rum FireJamaican OverproofUnaged Jamaican Overproof
Rum-BarGoldAged Jamaican
Rum-BarSilverUnaged Jamaican
Rum-BarOverproofUnaged Jamaican Overproof
Santa TeresaClaroLightly Aged/Filtered2
Santa Teresa1796Moderately Aged
SkipperFinest Old DemeraraAged Demerara5
Smith & CrossAged Jamaican1
StolenOverproof JamaicanAged Jamaican
Proof & WoodThe FunkUnaged Jamaican
Trois RivieresCuvee de L'OceanUnaged Agricole
Trois RivieresBlanc 100 ProofUnaged Agricole
Wood's100Aged Demerara
Worthy Park109Aged Jamaican
Wray & NephewOverproofUnaged Jamaican Overproof
Yellow SnakeAmberAged Jamaican
Zacapa23 CentenarioModerately Aged4