'Highly sought after' could well be read as 'we had lots of messages of disappointment from folks who couldn't lay hands on a bottle from the initial release'. So whilst it's great to keep on pushing the corners of the Rum map out further and further - we also think that occasionally it's nice to take stock and enjoy the moment, and when Rums are this delicious who can argue?
C.A.C.D. 13 Year Old - Batch 2 [60.1%ABV]
Multi-column Still, Single Distillery
Large scale facilities such as Corporation Alcoholes del Caraibe (and yes - C.A.C.D. should really read C.A.D.C. but... well... more about that another time) in Venezuela mainly produce Rum for some well known, mass produced blended brands, and so fab single cask offerings like this are not so commonplace.
This delicious 13 year old, MCDF marque is well travelled; It was distilled February 2008 and filled into American white oak in Venezuela, where it was aged for 56 months. It was then shipped to the Dominican Republic in cask and aged for a further 40 months before being shipped to the UK in 2016 and refilled into recycled rum casks where it resided until bottled by us!
Don't forget all our Rums are free from colourant, sweeteners, and other flavourings, and so it's a great chance to try untouched Rums from this part of the world.
The label shows our very own Mr Stubbs (a very valuable member of the team at ATOM) en-route to the Corporation Alcoholes del Caraibe facility in Venezuela. Peering out of the aeroplane window with (we assume) a look of awe - or is it abject terror? - at the view of the beautiful and mysterious Mount Roraima below.
This famous tepui on the border of Venezuela, Brazil and Guyana was the visual inspiration for Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s ‘The Lost World’. So I guess we should not be surprised by the sight of the local fauna flying around, even if Pterodactyls have been extinct for millions of years.
Nose: Sweet vanilla caramel, juicy dried dates and sultanas combine with a dried tea leaves, and a hint of dried coconut.
Palate: Sweet toffee and raisins rush onto the palate. Oily in the mouth. A hint of butterscotch.
Finish: Warming. A grip of astringent oak-y notes, and bitter chocolate leads to a peppery finish with a hint of burnt toast.
Haiti 17 Year Old - Batch 3 [59.2%ABV]
Traditional Column Still Rum, Single Distillery
Originating from the countries biggest distillery, this fabulous aged Rum was distilled in 2004, matured in Haiti for six years, the Rum was then transferred to the UK for the remainder of it’s maturation. Specifics are a little light for this release, but we can confirm it’s utterly delicious.
The label shows the iconic brightly coloured dwellings of Jalousie in Pétionville, Port-au-Prince form a backdrop to the artistically-licenced arrangement that allows us to enjoy a view of the famous Iron Market in the middle distance.
Sitting at a street cafe, chatting about the fabulous depth of art and culture in Haiti (and obviously enjoying a glass of delicious aged Haitian Rum) we have a group of historically significant people. General Toussaint Louverture remains an iconic leader of the republic of Haiti, and to his right, the statue of the Unknown Slave (Le Marron Inconnu) has arisen from his mount, although he still has his conch shell with him. Artist Hector Hyppolite, famous for his painting ‘Damballah La Flambeau’ sits to the left of the easel. Next to Hector we see a lady in her traditional Haitian Quadrille dress and headscarf.
Pretty sure there’s a story behind the inclusion of the vendor with the three-wheel bike heavily laden with crates of fruit, and a large cooler underneath a large parasol...
Nose: A gloriously fruity nose of dried mango, and pineapple pieces. Creamy vanilla custard. Grassy, with hints of eucalyptus, and green tea.
Palate: Soft sweet plums, and papaya fill the mouth with a creamy texture.
Finish: A long dry oaky experience, with peppery warmth, and a little briny black olive.
Diamond Distillery (Versailles Still) 14 Year Old - Batch 3 [55.6%ABV]
Pot Still Rum, Single Distillery
The Versailles single wooden pot still, or vat still as it is also known is one of the historically significant Heritage Stills located at Diamond Distillery in Guyana. Looking for all the world like an upturned wooden bucket, this still has copper in all the right places and produces Rums with a distinctive flavour profile that have been parts of Rum blends for centuries.
Originally located at the Versailles Estate, it was moved to Enmore in 1978, then again to Uitvlugt in 1994 when Enmore shut. Finally moving to Diamond Distillery in December 1999. This release carries the SXG (S&G) production marque, and the youngest cask of five in the blend was distilled July 2004 with others from 2003 and 2002, all moved to the UK in 2011 for further maturation before being vatted together and bottle by us.
The label, originally created By Jim’ll Paint It is playing upon the fairly common place “What? It’s made of wood. Won’t it burn down?” reaction we get when they find out about these heritage stills, and we’ve had some fun, further including a number of seemingly-nonsensical products (chocolate teapot anyone?). Of course rummies know that the still is really heated by steam rather than direct fire.
The bearded chap is our Boutique-y Pete, and along side him you’ll find Marcus Tandy, star of the short lived BBC Soap Opera: El Dorado, although you'll be showing your age if you remember watching that before it was canned.
Nose: Plenty of oak, vanilla and banana fritters, with ginger, a little milk chocolate, brown sugar, toffee and touches of coconut, dried fruit and wood smoke.
Palate: Juicy raisins, sultanas and orange peel, with rich molasses, a tannic red-wine-like note and darker caramel in support. A little sweet tobacco, herbal tea and dry baking spice add depth.
Finish: A long finish features golden syrup, sea salt and just a hint of engine oil.