Diplomático produces some of the finest rums in the world. The Venezuelan distillery – located in La Miel at the foothills of the Andes – was founded in 1959 by Licorerías Unidas.
Former drinks giant Seagram remained a major shareholder in the distillery until 2002 when José Rafael Ballesteros Meléndez became the soul owner. This change in ownership, coupled with the introduction of new legislation protecting rum making in the region in 2003, heralded a new era for Diplomático.
Today, the distillery produces rums from three different stills, aged for different lengths of time. The batch kettle, originally used to make rye whiskey, produces a lighter and spicier rum, whereas the Scottish pot still produces a heavier rum. The third, a barbet column still from France, produces a much lighter and floral rum. Reserva Exclusiva, a blend of column pot still rums, is arguably the distillery’s most famous bottling.
Local legend and 19th century rum aficionado Don Juancho Nieto Meléndez’s portrait graces the Diplomático bottles. The nobleman was a key figure in sourcing the finest rum ingredients and finding the best rum-producing methods.
Diplomático owns its own sugar cane plantations and cultivates its own yeast. The distillery has pioneered sustainability for the last 15 years and is constantly pushing to reduce its carbon footprint.