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Posts Tagged ‘Rum’

#24 Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva

Posted by Arctic Wolf on December 1, 2015

In the late 1950s, the main companies involved in the production and distribution of alcoholic spirits in Venezuela were grouped into one organization called Licorerias Unitas S.A. by the initiative of Seagrams who owned 51 % of the new entity until 1992. After a series of mergers and acquisitions involving Seagrams, Diageo, and Pernod Richard, a decision was made to divest in facilities and to instead concentrate on brand commercialization. The result was a group of local investors who purchased the manufacturing assets of Licorerias Unitas S.A. and formed Distilleries Unitas S.A. (DUSA) on August 22, 2002. Although this company is relatively new, the tradition of making quality rum in Venezuela using the these facilities which is not. In fact sugar cane has been cultivated in Venezuela perhaps as early as the 16th century.  Systematic rum production in Venezuela can be dated to 1896.

Diplomatico Exclusiva SAM_1418Diplomatico Exclusiva Reserva is a premium rum which is produced from both column still rums and pot still rum. Within the blend are rums which are aged up to 12 years. The combination of tropical aging, batch still production yields an exquisite rum which has long been one of my favourites.

Here is a link to the review of the #24 spirit on my Rum Howler Top 100 Spirits Countdown of the best spirits I have ever tasted.

#24 – Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva

“… There is a nice underlying nuttiness (walnuts and hazelnuts), some sweet caramel and some very delicious baking spices (vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and brown sugar). As the glass breathes, The richness of the rum builds and I taste even more brown sugar and cinnamon with butter.  Mmmmm! …”

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You may follow my Countdown list of the 100 Best Spirits here: The Rum Howler 2015 – Top 100 Spirits

Posted in Awards, Extras, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

#28 Appleton Estate Extra Old 12 Year Jamaican Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 27, 2015

It was in April of 2009, that I wrote my first rambling reviews on the Ministry of Rum. If you search their old threads you will come across my original write-up on the Appleton 12 year Old Rum. It was in truth the first ‘review’ I ever wrote. It really wasn’t meant to be a review; but more of a fun write-up to let the members of that forum know what I liked and didn’t and why. That rambling thread is responsible for all that followed. About 6 months later I started this website and that write-up on the Ministry of Rum became the first review I placed on my website, just a little more fleshed out but in essence that same ‘review’ I wrote originally.

Appleton Estate 12 Year OldIn November 2012 I revisited the Appleton 12 year Old Rum and found that my appreciation of the rum had increased substantially. Another visit to the bottle this year only reinforced that opinion. The Appleton 12 Year Old XO Rum has improved over the years (or perhaps my taste has).

Here is a link to the review of the #28 spirit on my Rum Howler Top 100 Spirits Countdown of the best spirits I have ever tasted.

#28 – Appleton Estate Extra Old 12 Year

“… The aroma has a firm spicy backbone with a deep dark brown sugar and strong indications of baking spice alongside. Oak tannin and citrus zests arise in the aroma as well as a darker more burnt smell akin to charred coconut and caramelized sugars. As the glass breathes , marmalade-like smell well up and a rich underlying almond/marzipan nuttiness builds …”

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You may follow my Countdown list of the 100 Best Spirits here: The Rum Howler 2015 – Top 100 Spirits

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#34 Cubaney Ron Tesero Grand Reserve 25 Year Soleras Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 21, 2015

In 2010, a friend of mine who lived in the Dominican Republic arranged for a local rum company, Oliver and Oliver, to supply me with a bottle of their top rum, Cubaney Ron Tesero Grand Reserve 25 Year Soleras Rum. At the time, Oliver and Oliver were an independent bottler of rum who operated in the Dominican Republic.  They bought barreled rum from major rum producers, and then aged it themselves using a solera aging system in what they called the “Cuban” style.

Cubaney 25I am not sure exactly what happened to Oliver and Oliver as current information about their company is very hard to find. However, the Cubaney Rum brand appears now to be centered in Australia. The Grand Reserve 25 Year Tesero has been discontinued, although both a 21 Year and a 25 Year Solera are available. Perhaps I shall be able to taste and review each of these at some point in the future.

Here is a link to the review of the #34 spirit on my Rum Howler Top 100 Spirits Countdown of the best spirits I have ever tasted.

#34 – Cubaney Ron Tesero Grand Reserve 25 Year Soleras Rum

“… A faint smoke is present which carries scents of dried fruits, raisins, and a soft and subtle cherry-like aroma in the background. A little wave of soft tobacco is mixed in, as is an ever present woody backdrop which seems to tie everything together. I even sense a smidgen of brine and tar in the breezes; almost, but not quite reminiscent of Islay peat …”

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You may follow my Countdown list of the 100 Best Spirits here: The Rum Howler 2015 – Top 100 Spirits

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#40 Ron Zacapa Centrenario 23 Anos

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 15, 2015

Ron Zacapa rums are made from sugar cane harvested in southern Guatemala, which is pressed into virgin sugar cane honey. The fermentation process uses a yeast strain (saccharomyces cerevisae) isolated from pineapples to transform sugars within the ‘honey’ into alcohol. This fermentation process takes approximately 5 days after which the fermented ‘wine’ is distilled in a single continuous column.

Ron Zacapa 23 AnosAfter distillation, the Zacapa rum is transported to the ‘House above the Clouds’ in the Guatemalan mountains for maturation. Special cellars age the rum at an altitude of more than 7000 feet above sea level where the ambient temperature is much more stable and the oxygen levels are lower than at lower elevations. The more stable ambient temperature ensures that the aging barrels are subject to less differential air pressure between the outside and the inside of the barrel.

I should note that this version of Ron Zacapa Centrenario is an older vintage from the one currently available for sale. This version is labeled 23 anos rather than 23 solero.  The older vintage received a higher score when I reviewed it, and when I tasted it side by side with the newer version, I found that I indeed preferred slightly drier and less sweet flavour.

Here is a link to the review of the #4o spirit on my Rum Howler Top 100 Spirits Countdown.

#40 Ron Zacapa Centrenario 23 Anos

“… This is very rich and very complex.  Nutmeg and allspice swirl around vanilla and dark molasses.  There is also an earthy, oak filled taint to the nose which is most pleasing.  I think I catch hazelnut and pecans in the air as well, but then again I might be imagining that I can actually tell the difference …”

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You may follow my Countdown list of the 100 Best Spirits here: The Rum Howler 2015 – Top 100 Spirits

Posted in Awards, Extras, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , | Comments Off on #40 Ron Zacapa Centrenario 23 Anos

#41 Rum Nation Demerara 23 Year Old

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 14, 2015

The Rum Nation Demerara 23 Year Old, is quite an interesting rum. According to my correspondence with Mr. Rossi (of Rum Nation) he purchased 3 casks of this rum from a vendor in the United Kingdom in 2002. The barrels bore the marque from Demerara Distillers Limited’s famous Double Wooden Pot still of the Port Maurant Estate (PM). These ex bourbon casks were transferred into a Sherry Butt (Oloroso N. 61)  in 2004 and were left to age in an underground cellar in Bristol, England where “early landed cognac” (Hine and Delamain) was also aged. The cellar in Bristol was closed in 2007, and the rum was brought to the Piedmont area of Italy (famous for the nebbiolo grape varietal) where it continued to age until 2012 when it was bottled in Italy.

Demerara 23 1989The  age statement on the rum is based upon certification in the United Kingdom (I note that the UK customs system is very stringent). Unfortunately there is no record of when the rum was shipped from Guyana to the UK, but my speculation is that it was probably meant to be part of the blend of a ‘navy style’ rum as Port Mourant Rum (from the Double Wooden Still) is one of the key ingredients in those British Navy Rums.

Here is a link to the review of the #41 spirit on my Rum Howler Top 100 Spirits Countdown.

#41 – Rum Nation Demerara 23 Year Old

“… The initial aroma is perhaps a little daunting as rising from the glass are rich caramel scents laced with the smells of wood sap and resin. Felled poplar trees, spruce wood chips, and fresh unstained oak all seem to be part of that wood filled onslaught in the breezes above the glass. Wisps of dry fruit and licorice mingle within the breezes as does a faintly sappy, mildly acrid, vaguely rubbery tar-like scent …”

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You may follow my Countdown list of the 100 Best Spirits here: The Rum Howler 2015 – Top 100 Spirits

Posted in Awards, Dark Rums, Extras, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Comments Off on #41 Rum Nation Demerara 23 Year Old

#43 El Dorado 12 Year Old Special Reserve Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 12, 2015

Demerara County (in Guyana) is popular across the world for its rich, three hundred year history of rum production. Using a combination of old wooden stills in conjunction with modern stills and distilling techniques, Demerara Distillers Ltd. (DDL) has built a reputation for outstanding quality and consistent production. In fact, Demerara Distillers is the currently the largest supplier of bulk Caribbean rums to Europe and North America.

El Dorado 12 SAM_1389The  Year Old Special Reserve Rum is blended from aged stocks (the youngest being no less than 12 years old) from the original Wooden Enmore Coffey still, the original metal Diamond Coffey still, as well as from the ancient Port Mourant double wooden pot still which was used to produce ‘navy’ rum for the English Admiralty. All of the Demerara Rum produced by El Dorado is aged exclusively in American oak (bourbon barrels).

Here is a link to the review of the #43 spirit on my Rum Howler Top 100 Spirits Countdown.

#43 – El Dorado 12 Year Old Special Reserve Rum

“… Oak and wood spices provide a nice backdrop for the sweet baking spices (vanilla, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves) and rich molasses that rises into the breezes above the glass. There are hints of spicy orange peel, and fresh citrus fruit which appear and disappear within the aroma, and I have a hard time finding fault …”

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You may follow my Countdown list of the 100 Best Spirits here: The Rum Howler 2015 – Top 100 Spirits

Posted in Awards, Dark Rums, Extras, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Comments Off on #43 El Dorado 12 Year Old Special Reserve Rum

#49 Rum Nation Caroni 1998 (Bottled in 2014 @ 55%)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 6, 2015

The Caroni Distillery in Trinidad and Tobago was established in 1918, and was operated at near full capacity until 1993. Unfortunately, due to industry consolidation, rum production at the facility began to decline late in the 20th century and the distillery was closed in 2002. As a matter of interest, the consolidation of the rum industry during the last two centuries is amply illustrated in Trinidad and Tobago where there this small country featured 50 distilleries at the turn of the 19th century. One hundred and fifty years later (in 1950) only 8 had survived, and today there is but one, Angostura. It seems a pity that so much tradition and history has vanished. Although I guess we can count ourselves lucky that some of the rum barrels from the Caroni distillery are still finding their way into the market place.

RN Caroni 1998 SAM_1706The Rum Nation Caroni 1998 is one such offering from the folks at Rum Nation. This is an old-style heavy column still rum which was distilled in 1998 and aged for nine years in American Oak casks on the Caribbean Island of Trinidad. From this tropical locale, the rum was transported to Europe for further aging in  refill American Oak (bourbon) casks which had been also previously used to age Rum Peruno (8YO).

Here is a link to the review of the #49 spirit on my Rum Howler Top 100 Spirits Countdown.

#49 – Rum Nation Caroni 1998 (Bottled in 2014 @ 55%)

“… A mellow corn whisky is up front on the palate, but rich soft butterscotch, caramel and sweet brown sugar sit under the corn flavour supporting and enhancing the experience. A nice spicy bite which has the hallmarks of pears and grapes grabs at the taste buds. Carrying all of this flavour forward is a wonderful mild oak presence that never dominates. The oak acts as it should, as a garnish which heightens the other flavours with its presence …”

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You may follow my Countdown list of the 100 Best Spirits here: The Rum Howler 2015 – Top 100 Spirits

Posted in Awards, Extras, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

#54 Appleton Estate Master Blender’s Legacy

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 1, 2015

In 1749, in the Nassau Valley of Jamaica, the Appleton Estate Sugar Factory was founded.  The Nassau Valley is a fertile, interior valley with a special mild micro-climate which is ideally suited to the growth of sugarcane. A water source which wells from a limestone rock formation provides an exceptionally soft pure water which used for the production of Appleton Rums. The Appleton Estate Rum is crafted from pot stills in small batches. After blending and aging the rums are ready for bottling. Unlike most rums produced in the Caribbean, Jamaican law forbids the use of an age statement unless the entire contents of the bottle are aged at least as long as the stated age.

Appleton Estate Maser SAM_1727The Appleton Estate Master Blender’s Legacy was produced to recognize three generations of Appleton Estate Master Blenders, Joy Spence, the current Master Blender, Owen Tulloch, the  previous Master Blender, and, David Morrison the current protégé of Joy Spence. All three blenders have set their mark on this luxurious rum which is a blend of rums which range in age from 18 years to 30 years.

Here is a link to the review of the #54 spirit on my Rum Howler Top 100 Spirits Countdown.

#54 – Appleton Estate Master Blender’s Legacy

“… There appears to be a light smoothness associated with the rum that makes everything on the nose more approachable than the other rums in their line-up. The orange peel which is very prevalent in the other Appleton rums is now combined with a lemon scent with both hiding behind or perhaps I should say melting into a light oak aroma. The brown sugar notes are softer as are other spices. Apricots, pears, pecans, allspice and nutmeg drift delicately in the air as well …”

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You may follow my Countdown list of the 100 Best Spirits here: The Rum Howler 2015 – Top 100 Spirits

Posted in Awards, Extras, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

#61 Pusser’s 15 Year Old Navy Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on October 25, 2015

Pusser’s Rum is advertised as the original rum of the British Royal Navy. And it is a fact that for over 300 years it was a tradition of the British Navy that each member of the crew was issued a daily ‘tot’ of rum. This tradition began in 1655, and by 1731, the tradition of the daily ‘tot’ was in general use throughout the British Navy. As it was the ship’s purser who was responsible for issuing the rum. The Rum became known as Pusser’s Rum in a sort of slang derivation of the term ‘Purser’s Rum’.

Pusser's 15 SAM_1703Although the naval tradition of the daily tot had ended, in 1979  Charles Tobias obtained the rights and the blending information for the British Naval Rum, and formed Pusser’s Ltd. on Tortola in the British Virgin Islands. His company produces their Pusser’s Rum following the blending information and the traditions of the Admiralty, including producing the rum from wooden pot stills just as the had been the tradition for over 200 years.

Here is a link to the newly re-tasted and res-cored #61 spirit on my Rum Howler Top 100 Spirits Countdown.

#61 – Pusser’s 15 Year Old Rum

“… My word what a taste experience. A full thrust of spice and brown sugar. Not that pale yellow-brown sugar you buy in most grocery stores; but the rich dark brown sugar you find in specialty shops and bakeries. The spices remind me of hot cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, allspice and cloves; and the mouth-feel is oily leaving these spices lingering …”

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You may follow my Countdown list of the 100 Best Spirits here: The Rum Howler 2015 – Top 100 Spirits

Posted in Awards, Dark Rums, Extras, Rum, Spiced Rum | Tagged: , , , , , , | Comments Off on #61 Pusser’s 15 Year Old Navy Rum

#63 Ron Millonario Solera 15 Reserva Especial

Posted by Arctic Wolf on October 23, 2015

Fabio Rossi began his life in the spirits trade as a Oenologist (one who has studied winemaking). After his studies, Mr. Rossi left the wine business and started up a whisky company in Edinburgh (Wilson and Morgan) acting as an independent bottler of Single Malt Scotch Whisky. His interest turned to rum and in 1999, Fabio Rossi founded Rum Nation and a few years later Ron Millonario.

When I contacted Mr. Rossi about the Millonario rums, he was very accommodating about providing me with information about their production including photographs of the old Scottish column stills which are used by the distillery to distill the Millonario rum from sugar cane molasses (utilizing a slow distillation process). The distillery uses its own specially selected yeasts in the fermentation process, and utilizes their own coopers to construct the aging barrels from American and Slavonian oak.

Millonario Sistema Solera 15 Reserva EspecialRon Millonario Solera 15 Reserva Especial in particular, is produced from a 4 stage Solera process with the final stage bringing the oldest rum in the blend to 15 years. (Based upon the information sent to me by the brand owner, the youngest rum in the blend would 8 years.)

Here is a link to the review of the #63 spirit in my Rum Howler Top 100 Spirits Countdown.

#63 – Ron Millonario Solera 15 Reserva Especial

“… the immediate nose was full of spiced oak, dark caramel, molasses, licorice, allspice, and cloves. When I tilted and swirled the glass I was greeted by moderately thick droopy legs which moved rather slowly back into the glass. As the glass breathes baking spices build with scents of vanilla, dark brown sugar, orange peel, cinnamon, cola, and dry fruit (prunes, dates and raisin) …”

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You may follow my Countdown list of the 100 Best Spirits here: The Rum Howler 2015 – Top 100 Spirits

Posted in Awards, Dark Rums, Extras, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , , | Comments Off on #63 Ron Millonario Solera 15 Reserva Especial

 
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