Halfway through the last century, the Jerez wine-making firm Sánchez Romate Hnos. set up an office in Cárdenas, Cuba, where the finest Jerez wines and brandies were regularly dispatched in order to later send the casks and bottles through-out the Caribbean.

In 1948, Juan Jiménez Villalba, one of the firm’s ablest foremen, was sent to Cuba and entrusted with looking after the company’s wines and brandies. There he observed that once the wines had been dispatched, the casks’ matchless characteristics made them excellent for the local Cuban distillers to age their rum in.