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Review: Lamb’s Palm Breeze

Review: Lamb’s Palm Breeze  80/100
Review by Chip Dykstra
Published Jul 06, 2022

In Canada, Lamb’s is one of the most popular rum brands. This brand traces its history all the way back to 1849 when Alfred Lamb opened his wine and spirits business in London. His original Navy Rum is reported to have been a blend of 18 separate rums from various parts of the Caribbean. Alfred Lamb’s method of aging his rum in cellars under the Thames River is said to be one of the secrets behind the unexpectedly smooth taste and popularity of his rum.

During World War II, the Alfred Lamb & Son premises on Great Tower Street were unfortunately a casualty of enemy bombs. One of their major competitors, White Keeling Rum Merchants suffered the same fate, and as a result in 1946 both Alfred Lamb & Son and White Keeling Rum Merchants moved to 40 Eastcheap, London where they joined with Dingwall & Norris who were already located there. The triumvirate became the company known as United Rum Merchants.

The Lamb’s brand was licensed for North American production to Corby Distillers in 1952 and since that time Lamb’s rum has been part of the Corby portfolio of spirit brands. (Halewood Artisanal Spirits hold the license to bottle the brand in Europe, Africa and Asia.)

In North America, the main portfolio of Lamb’s Rums includes, Lamb’s Classic White Rum, Lamb’s Spiced Rum, Lamb’s Palm Breeze, and Lamb’s Navy Rum (which is sold both at 80 proof as well as an overproof 151).

This is the review for Lambs Palm Breeze  sold at 40 % alcohol by volume.

In the Bottle 4/5

As stated in my preamble, Lamb’s is one of Canada’s most popular rum brands. One of the reasons for this is the competitive price, and the other reason is the attractive bottle display. Although the labeling has changed over the years, the distinctive hexagonal tall long necked bottle is seen by most as an upgrade over the cylindrical counterparts on the economy shelf at most retail vendors. As you can see, the Lamb’s bottle is attractive.  The bottle holds true to the bartender’s creed being easy to store on the bar shelf, easy to grab and hold, and most importantly easy to pour. The plastic screw cap on the bottle is much preferred over those pressed on metal caps I still see on many other bottles. All in all, the presentation is quite nice considering this is an economy brand.

I should note that my sample bottle was the smaller flask style bottling which is shown at the conclusion of the review alongside my suggested cocktail.

In the Glass 8/10

Colour: Pale Gold

Legs: Quick and slender

Nose: Butterscotch, almond, sandalwood and spice. It is the sandalwood and spice (rather than the butterscotch) which grows in the breezes as I let the glass breathe. I soon notice traces of white pepper and cinnamon as well as building citrus zest and banana peel. Hints of vanilla and almond round out the aroma, which if I had encountered it in a blind format, I might just have mistaken it for a light Canadian whisky.

In the Mouth 48/60

I taste sandalwood and rye-like spices mingling with butterscotch, lime zest and vanilla.  Some bits of almond and orange peel are mixed in.The rum is light and inviting, but not extremely complex. As well a light alcohol astringency reflecting the youth of this amber rum is apparent.

I would not by any stretch consider Lamb’s Palm Breeze to be a sipping rum. It is a cocktail mixer suited for tall rum and cola style cocktails or perhaps mixed with lime in the style of a daiquiri. In those settings, the rum is more than satisfactory,

In the Throat  12/15

The finish is clean and crisp, albeit with a light burn which you can feel in the throat.  The palate is left heated with little balls of cinnamon spice and white pepper; however, fleeting images of caramel and honey are left behind as well, and even a few hints of wet gravel. (It’s better than it sounds.)

The Afterburn 8/10

Lamb’s Palm Breeze is an amber rum which features clean crisp almost whisky-like flavours. I found I kept returning to the bottle and mixing the amber rum with ginger-ale just as if it were a nice Canadian Whisky. When I reflect on this I realize that maybe I am not so far off the mark. This is a rum produced by Corby primarily for a Canadian market. Perhaps it is not so strange that a blend meant for the Canadian palate would offer me something familiar. Although I would be hard pressed to call the Lamb’s Palm Breeze a sipping rum, as a mixing rum it offers a unique whisky-like flavour profile which I personally find very appealing.

Having said that,  I should also point out that mixing an amber rum with ginger ale is not so strange. In fact in some Caribbean countries they are much more likely to mix their rum with ginger ale than they are to mix with cola.

If you are interested in comparing more scores, here is a link to my other published Rum Reviews.

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Suggested Recipe:

The Master Blender (Joy Spence) for Appleton Estate Rum shared her favourite cocktail with me during an interview I conducted a few years ago (See interview here). I found it nice to know that those who make great rum, also agree with me that it is more than acceptable to mix great rum with ginger-ale.

The Spence Cocktail

2 oz Aged Rum
1 orange slice
dash Angostura bitters
Ice
Ginger ale

Muddle 1 slice of orange with a dash of Angostura Bitters in a rocks glass
Add 2 oz Aged Rum
Top up with ginger ale and ice

And of course enjoy responsibly!

Note: If  you are interested in more of my original cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more of my mixed drink recipes!

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My Final Score is out of 100 and you may (loosely) interpret the score as follows:

0-25     A spirit with a rating this low would actually kill you.
26-49   Depending upon your fortitude you might actually survive this.
50 -59  You are safe to drink this…but you shouldn’t.
60-69   Substandard swill which you may offer to people you do not want to see again.
70-74    Now we have a fair mixing rum or whisky.  Accept this but make sure it is mixed into a cocktail.
75-79    You may begin to serve this to friends, again probably still cocktail territory.
80-84    We begin to enjoy this spirit neat or on the rocks. (I will still primarily mix cocktails)
85-89    Excellent for sipping or for mixing!
90-94    Definitely a primary sipping spirit, in fact you may want to hoard this for yourself.
95-97.5 The Cream of the Crop
98+       I haven’t met this bottle yet…but I want to.

Very loosely we may put my scores into terms that you may be familiar with on a Gold, Silver, and  Bronze medal  scale as follows:

 
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