Castro’s antique rum blend finds UK distribution

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A blend of antique rums from Cuba is now available in the UK through a new distribution deal with drinks agency Spirit Cartel.

Isla del Tesoro, or Treasure Island, is made up of rums once owned by the old rum-making families who fled Cuba during the Revolution in the 1950s.

These were found in 1959, gently ageing in an old cellar nicknamed the “Cathedral of Light Rum”, and appropriated by the government. They were used exclusively to make the blend for Cuba’s former president Fidel Castro for 50 years.

Until very recently, the rum was not for sale, given only to visiting dignitaries and senior members of the Cuban government, but now some limited stock is available commercially. In the UK, it will be priced in retail at £499 per 70cl bottle.

With ABV of 40%, it comes in individually numbered ceramic decanters, sealed with a cork, encased in a handmade wooden chest. It comes with a scroll depicting where you can find the real Isla del Tesoro, now called Isla de la Juventud, along with cocktail recipes.

Spirit Cartel boss Charles Marshall said: “Isla del Tesoro is truly the stuff of legend. We feel it’s our own little revolution and certainly a piece of history, just getting our hands on the UK distribution for the rum.

“The romance surrounding this rum contributes to the myth that it has come to represent the Cuban people’s soul: pure and full of spirit, whilst maintaining a real sense of dignity and elegance.

“It’s a rum for connoisseurs and aficionados. In my opinion, no rum collection is complete without a bottle of El Caballo’s personal rum. We can all be a little Fidelista even if we are not communist.”

Spirit Cartel’s portfolio of premium spirits also includes Four Roses Kentucky Bourbon, Burleigh’s Gin, Don Q Rum, Clase Azul Tequila, Ron de Jeremy, Babička Wormwood Vodka, Pyrat Rum, Kappa Pisco, San Cosme Mezcal, Opal Nera Black Sambuca, Mancino Vermouth, Roots Greek Liqueurs, Ron Millonario and Rum Nations Rum.

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