Rum review: Ron de Jeremy – The Original Adult Spiced
Editors note: I fucked up! In my original review, I stated that this was a seven year-old rum and rated it as such. Turns out I’d been falsely informed. Not long after posting, I was contacted by the producer of Ron de Jeremy who set the record straight for me and explained that this was an aged but not seven year-old rum. I’ve changed my review below to reflect this new bit of knowledge and score the rum a bit more fairly; that is as a standard spiced rum and not a 7 year-old rum.
Oh boy, what have I gotten myself into now? It seems like a review of another novelty booze item, this one possibly a little more controversial than my dance with Iron Maiden’s The Trooper Beer back in the early days of this blog.
It’s quite simple, really, I saw this product sitting on the shelf of a store and immediately was thrown into a pretty classic case of “I don’t really want to own this, but there’s no way in hell I can pass this up! It’s genius!” The product in question, of course, was Ron de Jeremy – a novelty rum named after the true legend and personal hero of millions of teenage boys around the world: adult, uhh, performer Ron Jeremy!
Why, pray God, is there a rum out there named after the supposedly greatest adult movie star of all time? Y’know, other than Ron being the Spanish word for Rum, I’ve absolutely no idea! The only reason I can think of is that someone thought it would be a really funny idea and an interesting way to turn a profit.
Of course, with cheesy ideas like this, there’s a great deal of skepticism involved on the part of the reviewer, because products primarily meant to be humorous and turn a profit seldom go down in history amongst aficionados as particularly impressive and memorable products, even if (or perhaps particularly when) said products are named after legends of the porn industry. Given the chance, though, as the rum aficionado that I am – and as one of the few rum aficionados around these parts to have stumbled upon the product – I felt obliged to give it a fair review. That’s not to say I wasn’t skeptical, though.
The main reason behind my skepticism towards this product, aside from the obvious implications of having a booze bottle sporting the image of a male porn star in my otherwise reasonably classy home, was that it pretty much bears all the warning signs of a shitty product:
- It is named after a celebrity and a questionable one at that.
- It bears a cheesy name.
- It bears a cheesy tagline.
- The label is so plastered in sexual innuendo, I’m reasonably sure the innuendo alone helped keep the subatomic structure of the label and bottle in place.
- The product’s main spokesperson is Ron Jeremy.
- It’s largely promoted by porn stars.
On the other hand, though, and perhaps strangely enough, there are a few things speaking in favor of Ron de Jeremy:
- All innuendo and corniness aside, it’s actually a pretty funny product. Its mere existence made me laugh.
- Ron’s mug aside, the bottle and label actually look rather attractive and professionally made.
- The contents of the bottle is actually
a seven year oldPanamanian rum made by people from a pretty reputable producer, whose rums have harnessed pretty good reviews in the past.
- For what it is, both in terms of a novelty product and a
seven year old rumhand crafted rum of good origin, it is actually pretty reasonably priced at around DKK 150 ($25).
So, would I be as horribly disappointed as I initially thought, or would I be pleasantly surprised by a reasonably drinkable rum at a decent price point with a side order of funny packaging? Only one way to find out, I figured. So a bottle made it’s way to my home where it lived in my rum collection for a while until one evening, I finally found a chance to give it a proper taste.
Ron de Jeremy – the grand review
For the purpose of this tasting, I used a narrow snifter glass that I always use for premium (and not so premium) rum tastings.
Upon pouring into the glass, this rum displays a rather attractive golden mahogany which is more than likely owing to being colored with caramel. When given a swirl, legs are incredibly long and thick, and only slowly make their way back down, clinging tightly to the sides of the glass.
The nose shows traces of caramel, honey, some apple and subtle spices all well hidden under a pungent and dominating whiff of vanilla. The alcohol is not quite properly integrated and stands out somewhat unpleasantly.
But what does it taste like? I hear you screaming. Patience young grasshoppers, we’re getting there:
Mouthfeel, for starters, is very thick and syrupy, almost cloying, as is the taste. Initial reaction is vanilla, vanilla, vanilla and caramel with some pronounced almond and a hint of sweet banana on the mid-palate. The finish is strangely dry, alcoholic and seems slightly off. In a way the heat from the alcohol keeps this from becoming cloyingly sweet, but it still just doesn’t quite seem intentional and entirely correctly put together.
In conclusion: I’m strangely surprised, I really was expecting this to suck, but I can see some people actually digging this. This is advertised as a spiced rum, but it’s no more of a spiced rum than the other cloyingly sweet vanilla beast known as the Captain. Well, okay, it is in that it’s actually enjoyable and has some nuances, and it’s certainly a much more enjoyable drinking experience! But it’s still, I’m afraid, a far cry from the real spiced rums of the Caribbean which are created by steeping real spices in the rum for careful flavor extraction. But then again, aren’t most mass produced spiced rums?
Considering I was expecting this to be somewhere on the level of my two least favorite spiced rums in the world, Captain Morgan and Bacardi Oakheart, I’ve no alternative but to say I’m pleasantly surprised. It’s actually noticeably above both Bacardi and Captain Morgan at a not unreasonably higher price. Still, Ron de Jeremy seems a little one-tracked and unstructured when enjoyed neat and falls short of really delivering. On a rum aficionado scale, It’s a middle of the road spiced rum which could use a few more subtle flavor nuances and a little less vanilla. I’ll keep it for novelty purposes and try it in a few cocktails and dishes.
Rating: 3 / 5
Update: I stand corrected!
In my original review, I stated that this was a seven year old rum. I may have been sampling a little too heavily, because I apparently got the spiced version mixed up with the reserva version which is, indeed, a seven year-old rum. Not long after posting my initial review, I was contacted by the producer who kindly informed me of my error and I’ve since been doing my homework on Ron de Jeremy. I apologize and stand corrected! I’ve changed my review to reflect the fact that I was really reviewing a spiced rum, not a seven year old rum.
@johanjohansen Thanks Johan! There’s slight errors though, Spiced is not 7 yr, the Reserva is. Want to try that too?
— RONdeJEREMY (@RondeJeremyRum) January 10, 2014
Mixing: Ron & Coke?
Mixed in the ratio 1 part Ron de Jeremy to 3-4 parts Coke with plenty of ice and half a lime thrown in, Ron de Jeremy actually makes a very decent rum and coke.
The vanilla notes are strong with this one, so beware when mixing and use it only in drinks you wouldn’t mind a noticeable trace of vanilla in. I’m a bit lost as to what to mix this one with, but I’ve got a feeling that Ron de Jeremy would make a great egg nog or hot buttered rum if you’re into that kind of thing. If not, might I suggest rum and vanilla ice cream? While not technically a drink, it’s one application I think I will personally be trying out soon while I try to think of other applications for this quirky, little rum.
What’s your favorite rum?