Brugal 1888 Rum – Review

Brugal 1888 RumBrugal 1888 Ron Gran Reserva Familiar (Rum)

76 Proof

Price Point: $45 – $55 for 750 ML (700 ML pictured)

Distiller: Brugal & Co.



We can’t drink whiskey all the time, right?  That’s why rum exists!  Although whiskey is, and more than likely always will be, my go-to drink, I do enjoy mixing it up with rum once in a while.

Just ten short months ago, my wife and I celebrated our honeymoon in Punta Cana.  I had tried Bacardi, Sailor Jerry, the Kraken, and an assortment of other rum portfolios, but I had never tried Dominican rum.  The two main players down there are Barcelo and Brugal, each with a unique set of expressions from very cheap to ultra-premium.  During one of our excursions, we were invited to visit a store with a very large assortment of rums.  I wanted to bring something very special home, so we sprung for the most expensive bottle, at a huge cost of $40!  Brugal 1888 was that bottle, and it certainly is special.



The nose on this rum immediately sets it apart.  Rather than the typical cane sugar aroma of most rums, Brugal 1888 has the nose of a well-aged, oaky bourbon.

The taste of this stuff is just as impressive as the nose, with the expected coconut characteristic of a Caribbean rum and the unexpected taste of oak and vanilla.  Brugal 1888 has a little bit of a bite, but overall it’s pretty smooth, which is expected because of its age and relatively low proof.

The bite is relatively brief on the finish, but the flavors stick around for a little while.


Rating & Recommendations

Brugal 1888 is a really spectacular rum, which is why I wanted it to be the first that I reviewed.  I give it a rating of 91 out of 100 from me.

Something of this quality should be enjoyed neat; no exceptions.

If you’re looking for the best rum for your money, give Brugal 1888 a try.  You won’t be disappointed.




3 pings

    • Bella on May 4, 2014 at 2:35 pm
    • Reply


    was just in domincan and I had purchased this rum. they had told me it was aged for 14 years? on the box it says 2006, inside label sticker
    on the bottle says 2013. I am confused! has this been aged or have I been ripped off?

    1. Hi Bella.

      From what I can remember, Brugal 1888 is a blend of a variety of ages of rum. 14 years may have been the oldest, which a slick salesperson will have you believe the entire bottle consists of rum that age.

      Perhaps the bottle was switched out from an older box and you are okay? Otherwise, you may have been swindled – wouldn’t be the first knock-off product sold to a tourist in the Dominican.

      Sorry I can’t help much further. There are plenty of more rum-focused blogs out there that would likely be able to give you better advice/answers.


  1. […] without seeing an advertisement for either of the major players in the rum game; Barceló and Brugal.  When you’re in a bar down there, they certainly cater to Americans with vodkas, gins, […]

  2. […] and reaching for a nice glass of rum.  The only non-whiskey I have reviewed on this blog is Brugal 1888, an exceptional rum from the Dominican […]

  3. […] have reviewed two rums on this blog (Brugal 1888 and Ron Zacapa).  As I reviewed these “premium” rums, it sparked an interest in […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.