You are correct about the Labatts connection. They went down a number of years ago and assisted the Cubans with modernizing their brewery. There are many joint Canadian- Cuban businesses. You see the flags of both countries outside some of these businesses when traveling the island. Chinese flag is increasingly common also.
As for the rum has anyone out there tried Lengendario 7 anos? I believe it is absolutely the best accompaniment to a cigar you can find. Unlike the other rums it is 34% alcohol and I assume the unfermented sugar cane gives it the sweet taste but with wonderful finish. If you like port with a cigar you probably will also like this. Alas only bought one bottle when I visited the factory in Havana and was unable to find it the last time I was on the island (not in Havana) so I am not sure how widely it is distributed. It was a small factory. A friend who owns a pub tells me he can order it but has to be a case. At Canadian prices though not the $6 CUC’s in Cuba. One third of a bottle left but if any rum lovers are passing by North Bay, Ontario I would be willing to share a shot if its still here. Cheers.
The 7 year old is indeed a fine vintage of havana club ron, and yes you are correct in that it is deemed the ron of choice with a cigar, not that I smoke but many people told me that when I have been in Cuba.
I have some 15 year old here at home, which is exceedingly good but at $80 a bottle (may have come down now) it was a special treat to myself which rarely gets opened (ok I sniff it now and again and treat myself to a small shot glass full, too scared illl run out lol