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Posts Tagged ‘Review’

2016 Spiced Rum Taste-off: Bayou Spiced Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 30, 2016

Bayou Spiced and Cola SAM_1668Louisiana Spirits was formed in 2011 with the stated aim to produce a world-class rum in Lacassine, Louisiana from Louisiana sugarcane.  By 2013 their distillery located a few miles east of Lake Charles, Louisiana, was producing a craft rum in what they call the largest privately owned rum distillery in the USA.

Bayou Rums are distilled upon a traditional copper pot still using 100% locally (Louisiana) produced cane sugar and molasses. According to the company website:

Spiced Bayou Rum is infused with classic traditional spices with a Louisiana twist. Featuring Louisiana grown ingredients, this special gumbo of spices creates a unique and satisfying blend that makes it the perfect rum for mixing. Spiced Bayou Rum livens up everything from a rum and cola to unsweet tea or an ice cube.

Here is a link to the review of the fifth best spiced rum currently on my bar shelf:

#5  Bayou Spiced Rum

“… When I brought the rum to my nose, I noticed a butterscotch and vanilla sweetness rode in the breezes alongside a pleasant, somewhat pungent, spiciness. The spiciness reminded me of nutmeg and allspice, with perhaps a touch of cardamom and ginger as well. I also seemed to sense some sharper aromatic spices akin to cinnamon and cloves …”

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I hope you find this countdown enjoyable, and you can follow the rankings here:

The Rum Howler 2016 Spiced Rum Countdown

Posted in Rum, Rum Reviews, Spiced Rum | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Review: Rum Nation Jamaica 25 Year Old Supreme Lord V

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 28, 2016

RN_Jamaica_25Rum Nation is an Italian company created by Fabio Rossi, who began his life in the spirits trade as a Oenologist (one who has studied wine-making). 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. His company is headquartered in Italy; but Fabio purchases select rums from various distillers in the Caribbean and the Americas. As a result Rum Nation provides a rather unique assortment of limited edition bottlings. One such bottling is Rum Nation Jamaica 25 Year Old Supreme Lord V Rum (201o release).

This small batch bottling was distilled upon a pot still at the Long Pond Estate in Jamaica in 1985 and was bottled in 2010 by Rum Nation. (In case you did not know, the Long Pond Distillery is the original home of Captain Morgan Rum.) The rum is apparently produced from locally grown Jamaican sugar cane molasses, and was originally aged in American Ex Bourbon Casks after which the rum was transferred to Oloroso Sherry butts where it aged for an additional time period.

Here is a link to my latest Rum Review:

Review: Rum Nation Jamaica 25 Year Old Supreme Lord V

“… As the glass breathes, sweetness develops with impressions of butterscotch and dark brown sugar appearing as well as rich baking spices in the form of vanilla, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg. There is an herbal grassiness present reminiscent of green tobacco and heather with perhaps a little fresh poplar and willow thrown in for good measure. A touch of sea brine, bits of iodine and a phenol (rubbery) scent of fresh tar round out the aroma which seems to grow larger the longer the glass breathes …”

Please enjoy my review!

Chimo!

Posted in Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Review: Fonseca Late Bottled Vintage Port 2008

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 27, 2016

late-bottled-vintage-2008Late Bottled Vintage (LBV) Port wine is (as the name implies) a style of Port which is bottled later than the more prestigious Vintage Port. LBV Port wine remains in neutral wood between four to six years, rather than 2 years which would be typical for a Vintage Port. Since Port wine matures more quickly in oak vats than it would in the bottle, it is ready to be served when it is bottled.

However, Fonseca Late Bottled Vintage Port, (unlike many other LBV Ports) is not filtered before it is bottled, as a result the Fonseca will continue to age and should continue to improve if stored properly.

The wines used to produce Fonseca LBV were drawn from a reserve of some of the best full-bodied red ports produced during the 2008 harvest. These grapes were grown both on Fonseca’s own vineyards as well as on other properties in the Cima Corgo and Douro Superior areas of the Douro Valley. The wines are aged in wood vats of 50 pipes (27,500 litres) capacity and then bottled after five years.

Here is a link to my review of this outstanding Port Wine:

Review: Fonseca Late Bottled Vintage Port 2008

“… As the glass breathes things change and I begin to taste the fruity flavours ripe BC cherries and fresh plums. The wine continues to open and stronger sherry-like flavours of raisin and dark fruit advance across the palate along with hints of oak and bittersweet chocolate. When I pour myself a second glass, the fresh fruit practically leaps onto the palate this time. The Port tastes sweeter, and now along with impressions of cherries and plums, I taste blackberries and raspberries along with strong hints of bittersweet baking chocolate and black licorice …”

Please enjoy this review of the unfiltered Fonseca LBV Port, a few more Port Wine reviews will follow in the coming weeks.

Chimo!

Posted in LBV Port, Wine Reviews - Port | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Review: Bacardi Gran Reserva 8 Años Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 24, 2016

Bacardi 8 Anos SAM_2679In 1862, Facundo Bacardi and his brother José bought the Santiago de Cuba Distillery and began to distill what would become the most popular commercial rum in the world. Using a method of charcoal filtering, and oak barrel aging  along with a still of copper and cast iron, Facundo Bacardi created a smoother more refined version of the locally made rum. His smoother version of the spirit became local favourite, and over time, an international sensation.

Of course, Bacardi Rum is not made in Cuba anymore, the Ron Bacardi Company left Cuba in the wake of Fidel Castro’s plans to nationalize all private property and privately held bank accounts on the Island. The Bacardi family moved important trademarks out of Cuba, and using a Bacardi owned plant built in Puerto Rico, were able to continue to build their company. Bacardi is now the largest family owned spirits company in the world.

The Bacardi Gran Reserva 8 Años Rum is  produced using column still distillation and oak barrel aging. This rum has been aged for a full 8 years in ‘hand selected’ oak barrels. According to various sources, at least part of the rum was aged or perhaps finished in sherry oak barrels.

Here is a link to my new Review:

Review: Bacardi Gran Reserva 8 Años Rum

“… The aroma is gentle, inviting, and very well-balanced. As I poured the bottle into the glass, I was enticed by soft fragrances of dried plums, soft caramel, bits of vanilla, and a wonderful fine oak spiciness. Hints of baking spice drift in the air, some cinnamon and a few indications of nutmeg and allspice …”

Please enjoy my review,

Chimo!

 

Posted in Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , , | 6 Comments »

2016 Spiced Rum Taste-off: Captain Morgan 100 Spiced Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 22, 2016

Captain Morgan 100 SAM_2672Captain Morgan 100 Spiced Rum is an overproof variation of the Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum. It is bottled at 50 % alcohol by volume rather than at the 35 % alcohol by volume strength of the original spiced rum. The overproof Spiced Rum is a blend of Caribbean rums which have been aged in white oak barrels. It should be pointed out that the particular bottle of Captain Morgan Rums which is the subject of this review is a Canadian bottling which I acquired several years ago. In the past, Captain Morgan Rums sold in Canada included both Caribbean and Canadian distilled rum in their blends for tax purposes. Although it is unclear whether this practice will continue going forward, I note that my sample bottle does make mention of the Canadian Rum in the blend upon the front label.

Here is a link to the review for the 7th best Spiced Rum upon my rum shelf:

#7: Captain Morgan 100 Spiced Rum

” … This rum is smoother than its lower proof sibling even though it carries more of an alcoholic punch. The spiciness of the rum is more apparent in the higher proof rum. I think perhaps these characteristics have been watered down in the 70 proof spirit, which allows only the vanilla to come to the fore. The 100 proof spirit with its higher alcohol content and more concentrated flavours just seems richer, smoother and more appealing …”

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I hope you all find this countdown enjoyable and you can follow the rankings here:

The Rum Howler 2016 Spiced Rum Countdown

Posted in Rum, Rum Reviews, Spiced Rum | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Review: Ethan Koll Rare 8 Year Old Canadian Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 19, 2016

Ethan Koll SAM_2622Ethan Koll Rare 8 Year Old Canadian Whisky is a whisky brand developed by Distiller Sales Company of Princeton, Minnesota and is part of a portfolio of brands owned by Phillips Products Company (PPC). The Brand was registered in 2010, and is distributed in the Northwestern States of the US and Western Canada.

Some of the other PPC brands which are available in my home market include: Broken Bell Bourbon, Cross Keys 5 Yr Old Barbados Rum, Monkey Paw Rum, Luxus Vodka, Capatina French Vodka and Veil Premium Vodka.

Although the whisky is apparently bottled (at 40 % abv.) in the USA, the whisky inside the bottle was both distilled and aged in Canada.

Here is a link to my new review:

Review: Ethan Koll Rare 8 Year Old Canadian Whisky

” … By the time I began to taste the whisky (after about 10 minutes of nosing) the whisky flavour had progressed along that same avenue of built-up richness which the nose had slowly revealed. The mouthfeel was soft and approachable, and I tasted a combination of maple and butterscotch sweetness melded into the oak spice, cedar and rye grain. This gave the spirit a mild rum-like quality which I quite enjoyed …”

Please enjoy my latest Canadian Whisky Review.

Chimo!

Posted in Canadian Whisky, Whisk(e)y, Whisk(e)y Review | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Battle of the Rum Cakes: Pusser’s Vs. Tortuga

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 18, 2016

rc-side3Several years ago I was contacted by Adam Dell (on behalf of Pusser’s Rum) and asked if I would review their Pusser’s Premium Rum Cake on my website. I accepted, and my friends and I got together and enjoyed sampling and discussing the cake. I took their comments and cobbled together a review of sorts.

Recently, I was contacted by Adam again and was asked if I would sample some of their rum cake again, but this time he wanted me to also sample a competitor’s rum cake, Tortuga Golden Original Rum Cake, and write a comparative review. This seemed like a fun exercise, and since Pusser’s have apparently been improving their recipe over the past several years, the new review would probably be timely as well.

Tortuga-OriginalThe two rum cakes (sent to my by Adam Dell) arrived separately with the Pusser’s Premium cake arriving first and the Tortuga Golden Original cake arriving about two weeks later. This meant I had to refrigerate the Pusser’s Cake in the interim so that I would be able to taste the two side by side. When I asked Adam if this would affect the quality of the Pusser’s product he assured me that as long as the cake was left sealed and refrigerated it would keep for up to 10 months.

Once I had received both products, I placed them each in my refrigerator, and then arranged to have a few of my rum friends over to help me taste them.

You may click on the following link to read the results of my first ever Rum Cake Battle:

Battle of the Rum Cakes: Pusser’s Premium Rum Cake vs. Tortuga Golden Original

“… Whereas the Pusser’s Rum Cake had a very rum forward scent oozing from it on the pate, the aroma of the Tortuga rum cake was less rum forward. The sweetness was also more muted. I am not sure if this is more positive or more negative, but if I were to make a differentiation based upon visual appearance and aroma, I would say that the Pusser’s Premium Rum Cake is more rum-like, and the Tortuga Golden Original Rum Cake is more cake-like …”

Please enjoy the review, Chimo!

 

Posted in Extras, Rum Cake | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Review: Cruzan 9 Spiced Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 17, 2016

Cruzan Spiced PuchThe Cruzan Rum Company is located on the Island of St. Croix in the US Virgin Islands. The Island of St. Croix is the largest of the US Virgin islands, being approximately 28 miles long and 7 miles wide. Along with the tourism industry and one of the largest oil refineries in the Caribbean, the St. Croix economy is dependent to a large extent upon the Rum Industry as a major engine of their economic growth.

All of the Cruzan Rums are produced using a modern five column distillation method which produces a light bodied rum, the quality of which can be tightly controlled by the five column distillation. The rum is then aged in once used American oak bourbon barrels.

The Cruzan 9 Spiced Rum is named for the 9 spices blended within the rum, allspice, vanilla, pepper, ginger, mace, clove, nutmeg, cinnamon, and juniper berry. It is bottled at 40 per cent alcohol by volume and is, I believe, aged for up to two years in American Oak.

Here is a link to my review:

#8 Cruzan 9 Spiced Rum

“… I was struck by the scents of pungent spices mingling with the sweeter scents of caramel toffee. Vanilla, nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon and cloves are easily identified in the breezes. I am noticing the ginger playing in the breezes as well mingling with just a hint of oak spice …”

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I hope you all find this countdown enjoyable and you can follow the rankings here:

The Rum Howler 2016 Spiced Rum Countdown

Posted in Rum, Rum Reviews, Spiced Rum | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Review: Bacardi Anejo Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 15, 2016

Bacardi Anejo SAM_2626The Bacardi Anejo Rum is produced using column still distillation and oak barrel aging. The rum carries no age statement, however based upon its placement in the Bacardi line-up between the Bacardi Gold and the Bacardi Gran Reserva 8 Anos, we can reasonably guess that the rums within the Anejo blend are between 2 and 6 years old. According to the website information, the final rum is further ‘shaped’ by filtering the aged rum through a secret blend of charcoal. This charcoal filtration helps to blunt some of the harsh flavour characteristics of a young rum giving it a smoother taste profile and less astringency.

The anejo rum is bottled at 40 % alcohol by volume.

Here is a link to my new review:

Review: Bacardi Anejo Rum

“… Sharp orange and banana peel follow with light notes of baking spice and vanilla. Although the rum has been filtered to remove some of its youthful astringency, there is nevertheless more than a few telltale notes of alcohol sharpness. In fact, based upon my assumed age of the rum, the rum is sharper and rougher than I expected …”

Please enjoy my latest rum review.

Chimo!

 

Posted in Dark Rums, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

2016 Spiced Rum Taste-off: El Dorado Spiced Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 13, 2016

el-dorado-spicedThe Diamond Distillery sits on the East Bank of the Demerara River near Georgetown, Guyana (South America). The Distillery, originally attached to the now closed Diamond Sugar Estate, is home to Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL). A few years ago, I was invited by DDL and Woodman Wines and Spirits to travel to Guyana for a very exclusive tour of DDL’s facilities with a small group of Canadian Spirits Writers and Restauranteurs. Some of the ‘Heritage Stills’ I saw in operation at the distillery were over 250 years old, and they were still producing (as closely as possible) the same historic marques of rum which they had produced over two centuries ago. Superimposed upon the scene of ancient Stills and equipment was the dichotomy of a brand new distillation plant which had just begun to produce its own marques of rum side by side with the ancient historic stills.

El Dorado Spiced Rum is produced at the Diamond Distillery, and according to the El Dorado Website the rum is a 100 % Demerara blend which is  produced using natural spices (cinnamon and vanilla) and hints of citrus flavour. According to recent correspondence I have had with the folks at Demerara Distillers, all rums which are branded as El Dorado Rum are blended from stocks of rum which are produced upon DDL’s traditional Heritage Stills. (For more information on the unique Heritage Stills in operation at the Diamond distillery you may read my first hand account here (Diamond Distillery Tour).

Here is a link to my most recent review of the El Dorado Spiced Rum:

#9 El Dorado Spiced Rum

“… The aroma is richer and spicier than I remember from my review of a few years back, although the general profile of vanilla, brown sugar, cloves, and cinnamon is the same as before. Light notes of apricot and peaches reach the breezes above the glass as well alongside some quiet notes of orange peel and citrus …”

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I hope you all find this countdown enjoyable and you can follow the rankings here:

The Rum Howler 2016 Spiced Rum Countdown

Posted in Rum, Rum Reviews, Spiced Rum | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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