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Cigar Spirits: The Real McCoy 12 Year and Doorly’s 12 Year Rum

30 May 2019

Today we’re looking at two 12-year-old Bajan rums that, on their face, are quite similar. Doorly’s 12 Year and The Real McCoy 12 Year are both distilled at the Foursquare Distillery in Barbados and aged for a dozen years.

Foursquare has produced some classic rums, both high-end limited offerings and more widely available rums. The brand is known for its straightforward style that rejects additives and embraces honesty with its consumers, including when it comes to age statements (e.g., the rum in these bottles has been aged a minimum of 12 years, whereas many other rums market the age of the oldest distillate in the bottle).

So given that they are both produced at Foursquare, what exactly is the difference between Doorly’s and The Real McCoy (beside the price; the Doorly’s costs under $30, The Real McCoy costs around $50)?

Well, for one thing, Doorly’s discloses on its label that it is made at Foursquare, along with the fact that Doorly’s rum has been made on Barbados since 1908. Meanwhile, The Real McCoy traces its name back to prohibition, but the brand isn’t nearly that old, and the distillery name is nowhere to be found (even though The Real McCoy is distilled in Barbados and widely linked with Foursquare). They are undoubtedly similar rums, but each features its own twist.

Doorly’s 12 features notes of ginger, lighter oak, ripe fruit, and green banana. The finish is long but not overly sweet, with more dried fruit notes (apricots and dates).

The Real McCoy 12 is woodier with heavier spice, figs, vanilla, cigar box, and orange peel. It has a long and woody finish with a silky mouthfeel.

Both are fantastically flavorful (but not overly sweet) rums that are in the classic Bajan style. I have a slight preference for The Real McCoy, but factoring price into consideration I suppose they are equally impressive, especially as a pairing with a cigar.

The full flavors of The Real McCoy call for a medium- to full-bodied cigar, while Doorly’s balance suggests something more mild- to medium-bodied. Either way, both are exceptional rums to sip neat, paired with a cigar or otherwise.

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

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