Review: Rum Advent Calendar (2020 Edition) – Drinks By The Dram (Spoiler Free)

Important: No brands will be mentioned, but I will provide any other information I have available… even made a pie chart, so strap in.

Drinks By The Dram comes from the online retailer Master Of Malt as a mean to try various spirits as tasting drams (30ml) rather than having to buy the whole bottle. They have over 5000 different spirits to sample. I’m quite fond of the idea as early in my rum journey I was subscribed to their Rum Dram Club where I was getting 5 random drams monthly which helped me understand and explore the category – even got a bottle or two at times.

Drinks By The Dram have been doing drinks advent calendars since 2012 and here we have their 2020 rum one. No, unfortunately, I won’t review 24 individual samples, I am actually planning to enjoy them properly – any excuse to drink tots of rum daily, right? I did however have a look at the line-up (oh, the sacrifices I make) and I will provide a spoiler free review based on that.

The Rum Advent Calendar features 24 30ml hand-wax-sealed samples stored in individual sealed compartments inside the box. If you do the math (or look at its description on the site) you’ll see you get 720ml of rum in total with an average of 43.9% ABV. The value of the full bottles featured as drams in the calendar ranges from £25 the cheapest to £125 the most expensive although most of them will be around the £40-£50 range. The calendar itself costs £150 from Master Of Malt.

As per their website the rums come from 21 distilleries from 17 different countries and, after seeing the list, it is indeed diverse. One name got my attention as I can’t find it anywhere (also it has a typo in it that didn’t help either) so curiosity took over and I actually opened* the set to have a look at the label of this particular one – it seems that it has been exclusively provided for Drinks By The Dram, this is exciting.

*I know it might sound like a blasphemy, but I put it back together as it was and by December I will definitely forget what’s where, no harm done.

There’s a mix of spiced, white, aged and sweetened rums so I made a chart (because why not) of how much of each you should expect without dropping any names or brands.

Personally I think it’s a good ratio, there’s something for everyone and you know for a fact you’ll try something you never had before. If I were to give the whole calendar tasting notes it would range from vanilla, banana, orange and chocolate to sugarcane, liquorice, oak and punch-you-in-the-throat. Something for the whole (18+) family.

Drinks By The Dram have upped their game this year, there’s a good balance of commercial and unique/geeky rums in here. Also it looks like flavoursome white rums get more spotlight which makes me happy. I will share short tasting notes and impressions on my Facebook page for each as I open them in December so keep an eye out if you’re curious and grab one here if you’d like to join me.

I’ll link what reviews I have of rums included in the calendar below without revealing the name. Click at your own expense:

Review #1
Review #2
Review #3
Review #4
Review #5
Review #6


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