Cihuatán Rum – the ‘Rum of Mayan Gods’ is now available to buy in the UK!
Cihuatán Rum from El Salvador marries the age old craft of Rum distilling with an innovative forward thinking approach inspired by their Mayan forbears, to create an exciting collection of cask aged Rums.
Highfern Ltd, Cihuatán’s UK importer, now offer four expressions of Cihuatán Rum in the UK:
- Indigo 8 Years Old
- Cinabrio 12 Years Old
- Xaman XO
Established in 2004, Licorera Cihuatán is the first and only Rum distillery in El Salvador. As a division of sugar mill Ingenio La Cabaña, which has over 100 years experience in the mastering of sugarcane, Cihuatán Rum’s master distiller and blender Gabriela Ayla is able to oversee the entire production process, from sugarcane seed selection to bottling.
With a patient parent company, Cihuatán has also enjoyed the luxury of time to focus on craft aged rums. All Cihuatán rums are matured for at least eight years.
Drawing inspiration from the Mayan people, who were insatiably curious, the distillery has combined the traditions of rum distilling with an innovative approach, the results of which are the production of exceptional rums.
Indicative of their approach is Cihuatán Xaman XO, the distillery’s oldest release and uniquely finished in specially commissioned Mayan Ceiba casks. Recent awards include Double Gold in the 2020 Fifty Best for Cihuatán Indigo 8 Years Old.
Cihuatán Rum is located in the Cihuatán valley, El Salvador. “Cihuatán” is a nahuat word which means “next to the woman”. When viewed from the valley, the profile of the nearby mountains resemble the silhouette of a woman’s face. Legend suggests that many centuries ago, a Mayan goddess visited the valley and filled it with fertile soils and riches, so that the ancient Maya could build their city.
This goddess would intercede on behalf of the people of Cihuatán to grant them favors. Cihuatán Rum is named after this goddess, and Cihuatán’s vibrant and colourful label design brings Mayan legends to life. Recently relaunched, Cihuatán’s new design presentation won Double Gold in the 2020 International Spirits Challenge ‘Design & Packaging Awards’.
Cihuatán oozes provenance, is presented in exceptional packaging which celebrates the Maya’s rich history, and above all else, tastes wonderful. We look forward to introducing Cihuatán to British rum lovers.
– Robert Ransom: Highfern Ltd
Amongst others Cihuatán Rum is available from Master of Malt, Drinkfinder and Shop4Whisky, with prices starting from £39.99 for Cihuatán Indigo.
I’ve been lucky enough to receive some samples of these new releases for tasting (Cheers Robert!)
So, what did I think? Here are my tasting notes …
Tasting Notes – Indigo 8 Years Old (40%)
Crafted as a homage to Tlaloc, the Mayan God of rain. Blue, the colour of Tlaloc, was produced by the Mayan people from the Indigo flower.
Indigo has been matured for 8 years in former American oak ex-bourbon barrels.
Nose: Tropical fruits, toffee and creamy vanilla. Later on this develops onto very creamy caramel indeed!
Palate: Very creamy! Tropical fruitiness, chocolate, vanilla and toffee big time! There’s also wisps of lemon cake and custard creams!
Finish: Smooth, creamy coffee with chocolate balanced with a nice chilli finish – lovely!
Tasting Notes – Cinabrio 12 Years Old (40%)
Crafted as a homage to Kinich Ahau, Mayan God of the sun, whose sacred colour is red. The Mayan people used the mineral Cinabrio to make red dye.
Cinabrio has been matured for 12 years in former American oak ex-bourbon barrels.
Nose: Stewed fruits, vanilla, caramel. This expression is slower to release it’s goodies but it is worth it!
Palate: So smooth! Creamy caramel with cane sweetness, tropical fruits, orange and a little lemon.
Finish: Chilli spice with a lovely sweet undertone.
Tasting Notes – Sahumerio (45.2%)
Cihuatán Sahumerio is the distillery’s 2020 limited edition rum crafted as a celebration of love. A “Sahumerio” is an incense burner, in which the Mayan would burn treats for Chantico, the Mayan Goddess of love.
Inspired by the Mayan sahumerio rituals, Cihuatán’s master blender Gabriela Ayala has carefully blended 12 to 14 years old light and heavy rums to create Sahumerio which has been aged in former American oak ex-bourbon barrels.
Nose: Honeyed fruits, vanilla and toffee.
Palate: Sweet, spicy with tasty sanguinello orange and vanilla. There’s also chocolate and biscuit. The spice takes over early which leads too …
Finish: A very spicy finish with delectable fruitiness battling it out at the end!
Tasting Notes – Xaman XO (40%)
Named after Xaman, Mayan God of the North Star, the protector of Cihuatán valley. Xaman was believed to rest on sacred Ceiba trees, the Mayan tree of life.
Initially matured for 15 years in former bourbon barrels, Xaman XO is then finished for one year in specially created Mayan Ceiba barrels.
Nose: Lush tropical fruits again, mainly mango. There’s furniture polish and creamy vanilla caramels which grow stronger after a time.
Palate: Cane sweetness, toffee, a little orange and grated chocolate.
Finish: Fruity spice which rapidly fades to honey sweetness.
To me, rum has never tasted as good as these! Fantastic tropical fruitiness coupled with toffee, chocolate and chilli spice – Amazing!
· Highfern Ltd are the proprietors of Angels’ Nectar Whisky and importers of Langatun Whisky, Seven Seals Whisky, Smögen Whisky, Strane Gin, Kinghaven Rum & Cihuatán Rum. Alongside the Cairngorms Edition, Angels’ Nectar also offer Angels’ Nectar Blended Malt Scotch Whisky – Original 40%, Angels’ Nectar Blended Malt Scotch Whisky – Rich Peat Edition 46% and Angels’ Nectar Single Malt Scotch Whisky – Islay Edition 47%.
· For more information about Angels’ Nectar, please see: angelsnectar.co.uk