DON Q legacy is a living force that drives their constant quest to perfect the art of distillation. It is the collective wisdom passed down through six generations of the Serrallés family in over 145 years of crafting rum.
Visionaries & Innovators
Don Juan vastly expanded the family sugarcane business and founded the Serrallés Rum tradition. Using a pot still he imported from France, he produced the first casks of rum sold under the Serrallés name. He also founded the town of Mercedita, named for his wife, Mercedes. Don Juan laid the foundation for not only the Serrallés legacy, but for Puerto Rico becoming the world leader in rum production.
The current President and CEO of Destilería Serrallés, Felix Serrallés has used his tenure to consolidate and expand the family business through significant investment and modernization. Under his guidance, Don Q has returned to the US after a decades-long hiatus, expanded its range of products, and has adopted environment-friendly production methods.
1820 - Juan Sebastian Serrallés arrives from Spain and settles in Ponce, Puerto Rico. Soon after, he founds the Hacienda Teresa, a sugar cane plantation, and starts a family in Ponce.
1861 - Don Juan Serrallés, the son of Juan Sebastian, founds the Hacienda Mercedita, a sugar cane plantation named for his wife, Mercedes.
1865 - Juan Serrallés produces his first casks of rum using a copper pot still imported from France. Also during this year, he makes his first sale—the Serrallés rum tradition begins.
1898 - A provision in The Treaty of Paris of 1898 grants the Serrallés family exclusive rights to the Río Inabón. This river winds through Puerto Rico’s volcanic mountains, and is the exclusive water source for Don Q Rum.
Early 1930s - Don Juan Serrallés’ son, Juan Eugenio Serrallés completes the construction of Castillo Serrallés on a hill overlooking Ponce. The estate serves as the family headquarters for 70 years.
1933 - Prohibition ends in the United States, including Puerto Rico. Party Time!
1934 - The Don Q brand is launched for the general marketplace. The Brand is named for Don Quixote, the famous literary character from the family’s favorite novel. Just as Don Quixote represents the search for a perfect world, Don Q signifies the family’s quest for perfection in rum.
1935 - A new, large-scale distillery featuring modern equipment is built at Mercedita. The company continues to expand under Juan Eugenio Serrallés.
1940s / 1960s - Uncle Tito rents an entire island, “Isla Caja de Muertos” off the coast of Ponce. Here, he hosts notorious and fabulous parties featuring his own rum label, “Uncle Tito’s Pirate Rum.”
1954 - Ramon “Monchito” Marrero creates the Piña Colada using Don Q Rum. As the head bartender at the world-famous Beachcomber Bar in San Juan, he wows the 1950s Jet Set with this original cocktail.
1981- Felix J. Serrallés Jr. assumes leadership of the Destilería Serrallés and begins a period of sustained growth and innovation that continues today.
1985 - Serrallés, Inc. acquires Puerto Rican Distillers, Inc., greatly expanding its range of brands.
1998 - Don Q introduces its first flavored rum, Don Q Limón, and immediately begins receiving awards for quality.
2001 - The Castillo Serrallés is sold to the City of Ponce for just a nominal fee, and now serves the public as a museum and cultural venue.
2004 - Roberto Serrallés joins the family company after completing his PhD in Environmental Sciences. He applies his expertise to create the innovative waste reclamation process that makes Don Q one of the greenest spirits producers in the world.
2006 - The Don Q brand is re-launched in the USA.
2008 - Don Q Rums rack up numerous awards at international competitions. Our Awards
2009 - Don Q launches LadyData on Don Q.com. Gentlemen everywhere elevate their wisdom about the Ladies.