Don Papa Rum

The Father of All Rums from the Philippines

Don Papa RumThe name ‘Don Papa’ was inspired by Papa Isio, a leader of the revolution in the Philippines against the Spanish. He led his island to independence before joining the main revolutionary movement. This national hero is prominent on the striking brand label, which was designed in New York by Stranger & Stranger. Don Papa has a gecko as headgear and there are said to be 49 other animals hidden in the label. The bottle has outstanding shelf appeal, making this an attractive gift.

Don Papa was founded by then Rémy Cointreau executive Stephen Carroll during a trip to Bacolod, on the southern island of Negros in the Philippines, which has a reputation for producing a fine sugar cane called Noble Cane. Rum had been distilled in other areas of the Philippines but strangely not here. He founded the Bleeding Heart Rum Company to produce a sweet and unique spirit. Don Papa was first only available in the Philippines, but its reputation and availability have spread around the world, reaching the United States in 2017.

A rich rum

This spirit is distilled from molasses, then aged for over 7 years in ex-bourbon barrels and proprietary American oak casks. The extremely hot and humid climate speeds the maturation process, resulting in a very different, rich and sticky rum.

So, one has been gifted (if lucky) this perfectly crafted and eminently classy bottle of Don Papa small batch, aged in oak, rum: expectations will be high. It has taken the US market by storm. I can understand its popularity: it has a very particular profile which will likely appeal to those who didn’t think they liked rum. It’s sweet and a delightful sip when served neat over plenty of ice. It’s heavy with rich dried fruit, honey and hints of that ageing. Mixologists will appreciate its possibilities for cocktails. This shouts ‘Christmas’!

Tasting Notes:

Appearance: clear amber

Nose: citrus, dried fruit, vanilla

Palate: raisins, vanilla, oak

Finish: medium with lingering sweetness


Visit Don Papa Rum here