Following the Cuban Revolution in 1959, the Havana club brand was nationalized by the government. The brand was established in Santa Cruz del Norte in Cuba in 1878 by José Arechabala. After his beloved company was nationalized, Arechabala emigrated to Spain with his family, before finally moving to America. In 1994, the company was owned by a fifty-fifty partnership between the Cuban government and the drinks giant Pernod Ricard.
Havana Club’s rums have become synonymous with Cuba and have become the back bar darling of many a cocktailian bartender. The range is made up of a few standard bottlings which are essentially mixing rums, as well as the seven year-old, which is intended for sipping. November of 2006 saw the release of the ‘ultra-premium’ Máximo Extra Añejo – “There will never be a rum that better expresses the Cuban rum culture” says Havana Club’s Maestro Ronero.
Havana Club's Cuban Barrel Proof edition, Selección de Maestros is bottled at 45% for extra oomph. The Gold Medal-winning liquid inside Havana Club Selección de Maestros - as the name suggests, the casks have been hand-picked by the maestros roneros from the company's finest aged stocks. The rums selected by the maestros roneros are finished in special casks chosen for their aromatic properties before being bottled at a higher strength than the standard range for a more intense, immediate flavour on the palate.
Nose: Burnt sugar, maple syrup, pecan Danishes, ginger, nutmeg and oak.
Palate: Lots of character and spicy complexity. Notes of chocolate oranges, espresso beans, cedar wood, cigar leaves, calves leather, musty woodsheds and crème caramel.
Finish: Hints of smoke and sugared peels, very fruity.