The limited edition single cask rum series from Mike Streeter’s Down Island Spirits company includes this ten year aged Jamaican HD 2012 expression, a classic pot still distillate made from fermented molasses at the legendary Hampden Estate distillery in Trelawny.
One of the lightest rums produced at the facility, the OWH marque (named for Outram W. Hussey) is considered a common clean style with ester levels in the range of 40-80 grams per hectoliter, far below the pungent venerable DOK marque at more than 1500.
Down Island Spirits Jamaican HD 2012
This Spirits Jamaican HD 2012 rum rested in toasted American oak in Jamaica for three years before transfer to Liverpool for an additional seven years.
It was bottled in Florida at the cask strength of 60% ABV.
Jamaican HD 2012 Rum Tasting Notes
Aromas of ripe fruit and cigar box lead to leather with hints of cacao, vanilla and caramel. On the palate, big warm bread pudding, ripe banana, treacle and baking spices precede toasted oak and a lingering musk. The finish is long, warm and dry, with echoes of fruit and bitter wood tannins lasting quite a while.
A visit to the distillery is an opportunity to go back in time, with legacy methods in place that deliver the endearing signature hogo style of yesteryear. The cedar fermentation tanks are alive with slow fermentation, emitting rich aromas of ripe fruit. The nearby muck pits contain past wash, rich in bacteria and acids that will enliven the next batch run through the legacy pot stills.
Unlike Appleton and Clarendon, there is no column still here; all the rum at Hampden Estate is made in batches, the old fashioned way.
Only 238 bottles of this Jamaican HD 2012 rum were produced, so rum enthusiasts will want to keep an eye open for it, most likely at retailers known for their fine collections; and also directly from the Down Island Spirts web site. The 750ml package, bottled at a hefty 60% ABV, sells for $95.
One of master blender Trudiann Branker’s first projects at Mount Gay was the release of the limited edition Master Blender Collection Pot Still Rum, with only 4,920 bottles. This expression was well received among rum enthusiasts almost immediately and earned some notable awards soon after release.
The Mount Gay Legacy
The distillery for Mount Gay has a storied reputation for producing fine rum using a collection of traditional McMillan and Fragasa double retort copper pot stills — along with more efficient column stills installed a century ago.
traditional McMillan and Fragasa double retort copper pot stills
a Pure Pot Still rum from Mount Gay, aged ten years in whiskey oak barrels
These distillates are artfully combined with expertise to balance their respective best qualities. The vast majority of Mount Gay rums are blends of these two types of stills, matured in oak barrels in the aging warehouses at the distillery.
Two unique aspects of the their legacy production techniques are the indigenous yeasts of Barbados and the supply of fresh artesian water from a deep well on the property.
A Unique Pot Still Product
This boutique Master Blender Collection pot still-only product was distilled in 2009 and aged for ten years before a second maturation of six months in ex-whiskey casks, emphasizing the rich and more rustic flavor profiles of these traditional copper pots in comparison to the tall column stills.
Mount Gay master blender Trudiann Branker’s first release is the Pot Still Rum
This is not the first time Mount Gay has released a pure pot still rum, — and hopefully it won’t be the last. But, it’s the first time they claim an age statement on the label of a pure pot still rum, and its the first signature release by master blender Trudiann Branker.
The Mount Gay distillery has a large stock of aged pot still rums to use in their blends. Eclipse, Black Barrel, XO and the elite 1703 expression have seen increases in the percentage of these well aged pot still components as they inch these expressions forward in the plan for premiumization.
Initial aromas of bold dried fruit, chocolate and musty oak dominate before herbal and floral notes, palm blossoms, damp earth and snuffed candle. On the palate, a very dry entry heats up fast, lead by charred oak, bitter vanillin and burnt sugar before a long lasting bitter cacao note in the finish.
This rum is reminiscent of the rustic and hearty rums from the old Caroni distillery in Trinidad.
Mount Gay’s limited edition Pot Still Rum from master blender Trudiann Branker was aged for ten years in American Whiskey casks before bottling at a robust 48% abv. The 750ml bottle sells for about $150, available mainly on the island of Barbados and a few select markets.
Spanning the globe in search of authentic expressions of rum, Alexandre Gabriel’s Plantation Rum brand celebrates the diversity of rum and brings a unique perspective to the marketing of sugar cane spirits.
Plantation’s myriad rum offerings celebrate the incredible range and richness of rum in both culture and taste, from points of origin to fermentation, distillation and barreling techniques.
Having spent countless days in the Caribbean in search of the best rums, Alexandre Gabriel’s dedication to understanding rum’s diversity is without equal. This decades-long obsession has effectively provided the enthusiastic consumer and rum collector with a global rum education on a silver platter.
Plantation Rum will present a seminar entitled “Exploring the Diversity of Rum,” at Miami Rum Festival on Friday, May 17 at 7pm. This seminar, lead by Rocky Yeh, will guide participants on a journey across rum’s broad landscape to explore that magnificent multiplicity of variety within the rum category.
The Miami Rum Festival takes place at the historic Coral Gables Woman’s Club on Friday, May 17 from 4 to 8pm, and on Saturday, May 18th from 4 to 10pm. VIP admission begins at 2pm each day.
The festival features rum producers from near and far exhibiting their products, along with seminars and master classes, cocktail demonstrations and a blind tasting competition by international judges.
The Plantation Rum brand will be highlighting some of their most outstanding expressions with tasting samples that explore the diversity of rum across many regions, including Xaymaca from Jamaica; Fiji Grand Terroir 2009; Jamaica Grand Terroir 2005; Barbados Grand Terroir 2005; Old Fashioned Traditional Dark Overproof; Original Dark Double Aged; 20th Anniversary XO from Barbados, 3 Stars White from Jamaica, Barbados and Trinidad; Barbados Five Years; and Stiggins’ Fancy Pineapple rum.
The Diversity of Rum seminar takes the participants on a journey across rum’s broad landscape to explore that magnificent variety within the rum category.
Rums to be sampled at Miami Rum Fest include: Abuelo Centuria Reserva de la Familia; Abuelo XV Napoleon Cognac Cask Finish; Abuelo XV Oloroso Sherry Cask Finish; Abuelo XV Tawny Port Cask Finish; Admiral Rodney Extra Old; Appleton 21, Antelope Island Red; Bacardi Gran Reserva Diez 10; Barbancourt 15; Barceló Imperial; Barnacles 12 YO; Barnacles 8 YO; Bones Aged Butterscotch; Bones Aged Cinnamon; Bones Aged Dark; Bones Aged Spiced; Bones White; Botran 1893 Solera; Brugal 1888; Bumbu XO; Cachaca Paratiana Labareda; Cachaca Paratiana Ouro ; Cachaca Paratiana Prata; Cartavio XO; Cashcane Black Smoke 45%; Cashcane Saloon Cask; Copalli Barrel Rested; Copalli White; Cruzan Single Barrel; Diplomatico Mantuano; Diplomatico Planas; Diplomatico Exclusiva; Diplomatico Vintage; Don Pancho Origenes 18; DonQ Gran Añejo; Doorly’s XO; Dos Maderas 5+5; El Dorado 15 YO; El Dorado 21 YO; Facundo Exquisito, Flor de Caña 25; Foursquare Dominus; Foursquare Premise; Foursquare Zinfindel; Foursquare 2005 (12 year); Gordian Knot; Gubba Gold; Gubba Silver; Hamilton St. Lucia 10; Hamilton Jamaica Gold Pot Still; Hamilton Demerara 86; Hidden Harbor White; Islamorada Dark; Islamorada Reserve Single Barrel; Islamorada Select; Islamorada Spiced; Jan Stephenson Mango; Jan Stephenson Passion Fruit; Jan Stephenson Pineapple; Kavana Gold; Kavana Java; Kavana Silver; Lemon Hart 1804 Original; Lemon Hart Blackpool Spiced; Maggie’s Farm Dark; Maggie’s Farm Pineapple; Maggie’s Farm Queen Share; Maggie’s Farm Spiced; Maison La Mauny Acaia 50; Maison La Mauny Honey 35; Maison La Mauny Spiced 40; Maison La Mauny VSOP 40; Maison La Mauny XO 40; Matusalem Gran Reserva Solera 15; Medellín 12; Mezan Guyana; Monymusk Classic Gold; Monymusk Special Gold; Monymusk Special Reserve; Mount Gay 1703; Naked In Jamaica; Nativo Aged Special Reserve 15 YO; Nativo Overproof; Nativo Aged Special Reserve 20 YO; Neptune; Nine Leaves Almost Spring Cabernet Sauvignon Cask; Nine Leaves Angel’s Half American Oak Cask; Nine Leaves Angel’s Half French Oak Cask; Pampero Aniversario; Penny Blue XO; Plantation 3 Stars; Plantation 5 YO; Plantation Barbados 2005; Plantation Fiji 2009; Plantation Jamaica 2005; Plantation OFTD; Plantation Original Dark; Plantation Stiggins’ Fancy; Plantation Xaymaca; Plantation XO; Prichard’s Cranberry; Prichard’s Crystal; Prichard’s Fine; Prichard’s Key Lime; Prichard’s Peach Mango; Prichard’s Spiced; Puerto Angel Anejo; Puerto Angel Blanco; Real McCoy 10 year old Virgin Oak; Real McCoy 12 Lost Lake Edition; Richland Single Estate Old Georgia aged rum; Ron Centenario 18; RumJava Cacao’Mon; RumJava Caffe Con Horchata; RumJava Cinnamon’Bay; RumJava Expresso Rum Cream; RumJava Mahtini’Mon; RumJava Signature; Saint James Imperial Blanc; Saint James Rhum Paille; Saint James Rhum Vieux; Santa Teresa 1796 Antiguo de Solera; Sebago Lake Coffee; Sebago Lake Original; Tanduay Cappuccino; Tanduay Coconut; Tanduay Double Barrel; Tanduay Gold; Tanduay Silver; Three Roll Estate Amber Rhum Agricole; Three Roll Estate Brazilian Style; Three Roll Estate Dark; Three Roll Estate White; Three Roll Estate White Rhum Agricole; TierraMonte Essential 8; Trois Rivieres Blanco Agricole 50; Trois Rivieres Cuvee de I’Ocean 42; Trois Rivieres Rhum Ambre Agricole 40; Trois Rivieres VO-Cuvee du Moulin,; Trois Rivieres VSOP Reserve Special; Worthy Park Single Estate Reserve; Zacapa XO; Zafra 30; Ziami Overproof; Ziami Platinum; Ziami Ruby Rush.
From Destilerías Unidas in Venezuela, the Diplomatico brand has revealed Diplomatico 2002 Single Vintage, a new limited edition luxury rum expression.
Distilled in vintage copper pot stills in 2002, the rum was then aged in bourbon and single malt whisky casks for twelve years.
2002 Single Vintage Selection
Diplomatico 2002 Single Vintage is a limited edition aged rum from Venezuela aged in oak for twelve years before a second aging in sherry barrels.
Crafted from a selection of the most exceptional rum reserves in their vast complex of aging warehouses, the components of this Diplomático 2002 Single Vintage are hand-selected for exceptional quality.
After the initial aging process, these select spirits are transferred to Oloroso Spanish Sherry casks for another year to impart an enhanced finish.
After the second aging process, the Maestros Roneros carefully blend the rums in order to obtain the structure, body, personality, flavors and aromas that best express the vintage year.
The result is an artful and delicate balance of rare aged rums, destined for this special limited edition 2002 Single Vintage, created for the most serious rum enthusiasts.
Aromas of vanilla and almond lead to well balanced caramel and dark dried fruit before aromatic oak, cigar box, musk and raisin. On the palate, initial flavors of caramel, vanilla and oak are enhanced by complex dark fruit, spices and hints of tobacco. The finish dries out with very long lasting echoes of oak, raisin and toffee.
This 750ml bottle of Diplomatico 2002 Single Vintage limited edition aged rum, bottled at 43% abv, sells for $119.
The Diplomatico brand includes many fine traditional expressions such as Rum Blanco, Reserva and Exclusiva. Among the prestige products are the single vintages and their ultimate luxury rum, Diplomatico Ambassador.
The addition of a VIP Tasting Bar offering select luxury, vintage and limited edition rums will offer a new level of excitement for serious rum enthusiasts at the 2016 Miami Rum Renaissance Festival and International Trade Expo. The annual event, said to be the world’s largest gathering of rum experts, professionals and consumers, is scheduled for April 15-17, 2016 at the DoubleTree Hilton Miami Airport Convention Center.
Miami Rum Festival and Trade Expo host Robert Burr today announced the addition of the VIP Tasting Bar at this popular rum event, featuring a selection of outstanding samples from his private collection.
“We want to share with rum fest participants some of the most interesting and exquisite rums that we’ve collected from our travels around the world. This is a splendid opportunity for rum enthusiasts to better understand and appreciate these limited edition, vintage and rare collectibles,” said Robert Burr, author of Rob’s Rum Guide, the National Rum Examiner blog and the Rum Minute YouTube channel.
The addition of the new luxury VIP Rum Tasting Bar at the annual Miami Rum Renaissance Festival and International Trade Expo allows rum enthusiasts to discover the world’s best rums.
The VIP Tasting Bar will be open Friday, Saturday and Sunday of Rum Fest weekend from 1 to 6pm.
Both Robert Burr and his son Rob V. Burr will be on hand at the VIP Tasting Bar to share their knowledge and passion for these select expressions of the world’s best rums.
“In the course of publishing Rob’s Rum Guide and reporting for the National Rum Examiner, we are privileged to visit most of the great rum distilleries in the world,” said Rob. V. Burr. “Along the way, we’re collecting some very special bottles that represent the incredible range of high quality rums from Barbados and Jamaica to Guatemala and Panama; from Nicaragua and Haiti to Martinique and Guadeloupe; from the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico to Venezuela and Guyana — and beyond. We invite our rum loving friends to stop by the VIP Tasting Bar to share some of our passion — as well as a taste of these fine rums.”
From the legendary Long Pond Distillery in Trelawny, Jamaica, this vintage Mezan Jamaica 2000 expression delivers the classic fruity and funky profile we’ve come to expect from legacy Jamaican distillers.
Mezan has built a reputation for bottling authentic, unadulterated spirits from notable producers in select destinations, and this Jamaica 2000 is no exception.
Mezan’s authentic Jamaica 2000 vintage rum comes from the legendary Long Pond distillery’s traditional double thumper pot still.
Long Pond is known for their long, slow fermentation cycles, allowing natural yeast to convert sugar to alcohol over a long period in the traditional manner. The addition of dunder from previous fermentations is an old technique long lost at modern distilleries.
This slow fermentation process builds rich and complex high ester flavor profiles, which are refined by a double distillation process in their traditional double retort pot still.
The result of this uniquely rich fermentation and rustic distillation is big rum flavor — Mezan Jamaica 2000 offers a reflection of style that made Jamaican rums famous the world over for centuries.
Aromas of sweet butter and charred oak, then big banana lead to subtle chardonnay with a hint of green apple before traces of pineapple, then a vegetal bouquet of fruit and dank earthiness over bread dough. On the palate, Mezan Jamaica 2000 presents a smooth entry of rich buttery toffee gives way to a very interesting briny, earthy leather and complex fruit notes tempered by a woody finish.
The 750ml bottle of Mezan Jamaica 2000 sells for $54.95.
Recognizing 250 years of producing fine rhum on the island of Martinique, Rhum Saint James today announced they will release a commemorative limited edition bottling amidst a host of festivities scheduled for the 250th anniversary celebration on July 6 to 12, 2015.
Rhum Saint James of Martinique will celebrate their 250th anniversary in July, 2015 by issuing a special commemorative limited edition vintage blend bottle of rum.
Saint James Rum is one of the oldest rum brands from Martinique, first producing rum on its plantations in 1765. From the outset the brand was a pioneer in its category, being the first rum to create vintage specific blends, and designing an innovative square bottle in order to maximize storage and minimize breakage on the long sea-voyages to its original export markets.
When the French King, Louis XIV, banned the sale of rum in France, an enterprising priest moved to Martinique and founded Plantations Saint James, where he produced and sold his rum to the settlers in New England. Rhum Saint James was consumed from Williamsburg to Boston, and became the most popular West Indian rum in the American colonies before the American Revolution.
The week of July 6 to 12, which traditionally marks the end of the sugar harvest, is set to be a key moment during the 250th anniversary celebrations in Martinique. The program includes tours of the distillery, masterclasses and tastings, as well as a live show culminating in the release of a commemorative limited edition 250th anniversary Carafe: an ultra-premium blend of six of the best Saint James vintages, presented in a luxurious glass flagon with embossed metal neck.
To pay full tribute to Saint James rich history, other festivities will be taking place across the world including an anniversary party in Paris, multi-media advertising campaigns and outstanding point-of-sale promotions.
Among rum enthusiasts the world over, this milestone anniversary will mark 2015 as the year of Saint James.
The brand is directed by La Martiniquaise, an independent French group founded in 1934. They are the second-largest spirits group in France and are featured in the world Top 10.