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bacardi black bottle on table with shot glasses

Bacardi Black Price + Review and Drink Recipes

Bacardi Black is a medium-heavy dark rum with unmistakably soft aromas of prunes, vanilla and tropical fruits. It is matured in charred white oak barrels for up to four years, to which it partly owes its dark color. The burnt wood also gives it an oak finish with notes of nutmeg. It has 40% alcohol content.

Bacardi group no longer gives an indication of age of its rums. So we can only make an educated guess that the Carta Negra rum is older than 24 months and probably up to four years old. It is a blended rum that does not get its color from the storage in burned barrels alone. Bacardi also adds caramel to achieve its color.

The Bacardi Carta Negra was marketed under the name Bacardi Black (Bacardi Select in USA) until 2015. This rum is based on sugarcane molasses from different parts of the world. It is filtered through an in-house charcoal mixture that continues to remain a Bacardi secret.

In the USA, Bacardi Black costs between $11.99 – $12.99 for 750 ml bottle. Prices from different vendors are listed below.

Smell and Taste

Bacardi Black rum has a bouquet of ripe, exotic fruits such as pineapple and banana. When you open the bottle this is the first aroma that immediately rises into your nose. A hint of vanilla follows with the sweetness of caramel and a smoky note from the charred oak barrels.

charring of barrels by setting them on fire

The Bacardi Carta Negra is sweet on the tongue, with strong caramel and vanilla notes and an almost spicy flavor. One can also taste the notes resulting from the way this rum is aged and filtered. There is a light smoky, woody aroma as you would get from a classic bourbon and roasted aromas from the burned out casks. 

Towards the finish, the rum becomes a little sweeter again and the exotic fruits come through. The finish is medium in length and is characterized by a balance of licorice, sugarcane molasses and smoky aromas.

How is Bacardi Black made?

Bacardi Carta Negra is produced in the Bahamas and Puerto Rico. The latter is the largest of the distilleries operated by Bacardi anywhere in the world. This rum is made according to the original recipe from 1862 and is an integral part of the large Bacardi family.

man bottling rum at Bacardi's Puerto Rico distillery

The starting product is the sugar cane molasses from various countries of origin. This is fermented with the addition of water with the yeast once called “La Levadura Bacardi” by founder Don Facundo Bacardi. 

This is followed by a parallel distillation process in which heavy and light distillates are obtained. The so-called Aguardiente with an alcohol content of 60 to 70 percent and Redestilado with an alcohol content of over 90 percent are then sent separately to burned-out ex-bourbon casks from American white oak, including used casks from Jack Daniel’s.

Following the aging, which according to various unofficial sources lasts up to four years, the master blenders mix the different distillates and filter through charcoal, for which a variety of different tropical woods is used. Dye is added for bottling and the alcohol content is brought to 40 percent. 

More information on the brand and distillery of the spirits tested can be found in the Bacardi overview page.

Bacardi Black Drinks

Bacardi Black is not a sipping rum because there are other similar rums more suited to drinking neat. For instance, the Bacardi 8 Anos or Gran Reserva Diez.

The black rum is especially popular in cocktails and long drinks. Due to its strong taste, it can be mixed with intensely flavorful ingredients and still come through.

Cuba Libre Rum and Cola Cocktail

Cuba Libresuper easy to make!

  • 1 part Rum
  • 2 or 3 parts Cola
  • Juice from 1 quarter Lime

Pour all ingredients into a glass full of ice cubes and serve. Details here.

mai tai in a glass with pineapple mint cherry and lime garnish

Mai Tai Cocktail

  • 3 parts Bacardi Black rum
  • 1 part Cointreau
  • ⅓ part Orgeat
  • ⅓ part sugar syrup
  • 2 dashes Orange Bitters
  • 1 part lime juice
  • 1 mint sprig (garnish)
  • 1 pineapple wedge (garnish)
  • 1 lime wedge (garnish)

Shake and strain the ingredients into a glass full of ice cubes. Garnish and serve. More details an information about this cocktail, as well as its recommended rums can be found here.

hurricane cocktail in a tulip glass

The Hurricane Cocktail

  • 2 parts Bacardi Black rum
  • 1 ½ parts Bacardi Superior rum
  • 2 parts orange juice
  • 1 part freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 part passion fruit syrup
  • 1 tsp grenadine syrup

Shake and strain the ingredients into a tulip glass filled with ice. Garnish with an orange slice and serve.

jungle bird cocktail on bar top

Jungle Bird Cocktail

  • 1 ½ parts Bacardi Black rum
  • ½ part Martini Red bitters
  • 1 ½ parts pineapple juice
  • ¾ part lime juice
  • ¾ part Simple Syrup

Add ingredients to a shaker. Blend on high for 15 seconds. Strain into a into short glass filled with ice. Garnish with pineapple leaves to give the drink a feathery look and serve. Remember, fresh juice is the best and the quality of rum and sweet vermouth chosen matters! Click here for detailed recipe.

Knight Cup Cocktail – Bacardi Legacy competition 2013 winner

  • 2 parts Bacardi Black rum
  • 1 part Cynar
  • ½ part pomegranate liqueur
  • ¼ part Simple Syrup

Put all ingredients on ice cubes in a mixing glass and stir cold. Pour in a pre-chilled glass filled with ice cubes. This recipe was created by Elezaveta Evdokimova from Russia. Click here for detailed recipe.

dark and stormy cocktail

Dark and Stormy

  • 2 parts Bacardi Black rum
  • 3 lime wedges
  • 3 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Ginger Beer

Pour lime juice on ice cubes in a highball glass. Follow up with rum and then ginger beer. Lastly add a few dashes of Angostura bitters and swirl gently before serving. Garnish with an orange wedge. Click here for detailed recipe.

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