Rum Nation Small Batch Rare Rums

RARE RUMS SMALL BATCH 2

Rum Nation is a rum company based in Italy created by Fabio Rossi in 1999. Fabio travels around the Caribbean and Americas to find the best rums he can find and release in limited editions and has since it`s start been giving out a wide array of rum styles, with a particular focus to the differences between the various geographical countries of production, their unique qualities and aromas.

Now here is some really interesting rums coming out from Rum Nation – small batch rare rums from Guyana.

This reminds me a lot about the three single cask expressions that came from El Dorado a while ago, all high proof. These type of rums are to my belief increasingly popular and from how it looks to me, they sell fast despite the higher prices.

The first three cask strength bottlings are very small batch releases with each bottle individually numbered, detailing the cask numbers and the distillery of production.The bottles are also in new design but sort of still keeping the hallmark of Rum Nation but instead of the usual cork there is a glass stopper and a new tube for an elegant gift presentation.

These three bottles have some beautiful and funny labels with tropical animals on them, a sure thing to catch attention.I find them really cool. This first release of three bottlings is meant to give a first taste of many more to come.

Rum Nation collage

Here are my thoughts on the three expressions:

Port Morant 1995/2016 at 57.7 % 

The color of this 21 year old Port Mourant rum is a deep dark amber with some ruby red hints, beautiful. The nose is a typical “old” woody demerara smell mingled with tannins and ripe mashed tropical and dark fruits.

The mouth is spicy and woody, strong, heavy and dry. It`s a real ass-kicker! it`s made in the famous double wooden pot still and it`s a small batch of 170 bottles. A heavy and powerful demerara with a medium long and woody finish.

It`s a bottle packed with power and strength!

Diamond 2005/2016 58.6%

The Diamond is of more or less the same color as the Post Morant, just very slightly lighter. The nose is mild and fruity, creamy and sweet with a hint of spice. It doesn`t have any much at all of the typical heavy woody demerara nose, just a little undertone.

The taste is very aromatic and rich, with wood and tropical fruits, spice, raisin, prunes and it´s very flavorful, more than what the nose hints at. It has a little sharpness to it and a little grassy (?) hint or something I cannot really define what it is but the rum is lovely! It also has a long spicy finish. It`s probably the most interesting of the three. Small batch of 473 bottles were made.

Enmore 2002/2016  at 56.8%

The color of this rum is light yellowish straw and it was made in the famous Enmore wooden coffey still. It has a mild nose with fine fruity notes, lovely citrus, apricot, and tropical fruits.

The taste is dry and almost astringent, light wood, hints of anise, a bit peppery and estery and very aromatic. Love it! It has a long peppery and spicy finish. 442 bottles were made of this expression.

Final thoughts –  It has been very enjoyable to try these out and I  like them all, they are different from each other, with their own peculiar characters and each of them are very good rums indeed. When it comes to additives and added sugar and such I don`t pick up anything and I believe these are just pure rums and pure rums is what I prefer when I drink it neat.

And for those that doesn`t know, if there is any sugar in rum it has been added after distillation by the producer because rum – like all other distilled alcohols, does NOT contain sugar after distillation.

If I would pick one as a favorite it would be the old pungent Port Morant closely followed by the very interesting Diamond. But I would love to have all three of them.The only problem is that these kind of rums are very expensive so my advice when it comes to small batch and cask strength rums is try before you buy.

I hope to see more rums like these! Fabio Rossi have done a great job bringing out these three lovely rum expressions!

Here´s my older posts about rums from Rum Nation:

Rum Caroni 1998

Anniversary Edition 12 year Old Rum, Barbados.

Rum Nation Jamaica Pot Still Limited Edition White Rum

Rum Nation Jamaica 8yo Pot Still Rum

Rum Nation jamaica 8 close

From a distillery in st Catherine, Jamaica is this pot still rum hailing but it has also spent time in Rum Nation`s Oloroso sherry casks, so it`s a 8 yo pot still rum with 50% Oloroso sherry finish.

It was distilled in 2006 and bottled in 2015. Aged in ex bourbon barrels in Jamaica for 7 years and one additional year in 1st fill ex sherry Oloroso top quality cask in Piedmont.The rum is 50% ABV or 100 proof and the residential sugar is (g/l):10.

The result is a well balanced and not overly sweet rum with notes of dark raisins, spicy cinnamon and cloves.

Rum Nation is a rum company based in Italy created by Fabio Rossi in 1999. Fabio travels around the Caribbean and Americas to find the best rums he can find and release in limited editions and as of today Rum Nation has a quite wide array of premium rums in their portfolio.

The bottle which I find to ve very nice, has the characteristic stamp on it – the stamp on the bottle is due to Fabio Rosso being an avid stamp collector in younger years and now adding a touch of class to the bottles with the stamps and a nod to the country of origin – which I find lovely.

A very nice touch!

So how does this rum taste? let`s find out….

Rum Nation Jamaica 8 yo Pot Still Rum bottle

Color and nose: The color of the rum is golden amber and it has a very estery fruity nose with hints of spice and light wood. There´s also something i cannot put words on but it´s sort of funky in a good way.

In the mouth: Here´s that punch of Jamaican funk again same as in the nose and with hints of spice like cinnamon and raisin, followed by sultry tropical fruitiness, banana peel, rich, creamy, aromatic, oaky.

It has got some fire which is tamed by refinement, maybe from the Oloroso casks, it´s like a mix of estery Jamaican funk and refined oak washed in tropcial fruits and spices. The result is very sippable, very enjoyable and it sure must make a great daiquiri!

It has a long finish and after taste and it´s not dry but neither is it too sweet.

Rum Nation jamaica 8 tasting

Chocolate pairing: Rum Nation suggest Valrhona Caraibe which is balanced, creamy and velvety which the rum also is so they pair very well together.

I also tried the creamy chocolately Jivara with excellent results 🙂 Jivara which added some ultra creaminess to the taste experience.

Sumptuous!

This thing about Rum and chocolate pairing…I could get addicted to it 🙂

Jamaican Rum Barrel 

Jamaican Rum Barrel

0.75 oz fresh lime juice

0.75 oz grapefruit juice (yellow)

0.75 oz pineapple juice (unsweetened)

0.75 oz sugarcane syrup

2 oz Rum Nation Jamaican 8 yo Rum

Dash Angostura bitters

Shake with ice and pour into a rocks glass filled with crushed ice.

Garnish with a tropical orchid and a rock candy swizzle stick (or other swizzle stick)

Final thoughts – iI can really recommend this rum to anyone, both the rum and the Valhrona chocolates! the rum can be both sipped and mixed without any problems in the world.

Rum Nation has once again launched a great rum!

Rum Nation Jamaica 8 valrhona

Rum Nation – Anniversary Edition 12 year Old Rum!

Rum Nation Barbados Anniv Edition close up

Here is another great rum from Rum Nation which is a rum company based in Italy created by Fabio Rossi in 1999. Fabio travels around the Caribbean and Americas to find the best rums he can find and release in limited editions and as of today Rum Nation has a quite wide array of premium rums in their portfolio.

The Rum Nation Barbados 12 year old Anniversary Edition is the second decanter of the Anniversary series: the first was a Martinique 12yo, also presented in a book shaped gift box and released in 1999 for the 10 years of Rum Nation (1999-2009). This second decanter has been released in 2014 for the 15 years of Rum Nation (1999-2014)

This rum is distilled on Barbados by RL Seale in a column still in 2001 and then blended in various proportions and finally aged in American bourbon oak barrels in the Caribbean, and further aged in Piedmont, Italy for 18/24 months into Spanish brandy and sherry oloroso casks before bottling.

Out of  the book shaped gift box comes an elegant decanter, which – i actually prefer to place on my rum shelf without the big “book” box! Funny idea but the decanter is all by itself all that you need, it`s really pretty! and the color of the rum is amazing, a clear golden amber and copper color – very beautiful presentation and color of the rum!

The label is beautiful and made of  fabric instead of paper.

Rum Nation Barbados Anniv Edition close up 2

When i see that decanter i really wanna pop off the cork and take a sip…

Nose

The nose opens with notes of vanilla, orange peel and butterscotch with a fruity apricot aroma, it´s also toffee, fresh herbs and sugarcane. I would say the nose is sweet and slightly spicy – and very pleasant. There`s a rich aroma oozing out of the glass…

In the mouth – The orange peel becomes more intense, it´s slightly sweet but less sweet than the nose, just very pleasant. The flavor is creamy and indulgent, this is a very rich rum with hints of vanilla, molasses, spice, sugarcane, butterscotch and caramel, also there´s a hint of fresh herbs.

It`s balanced, complex, rich, creamy and smooth….i have nothing negative at all to say about this rum, nothing. And it has that pleasant little sweet note without it being too sweet. This is a sipping rum for sure and if  i should pick one cocktail to make with it – it has to be the classic daiquiri – which is the best cocktail to feature the flavor of a rum.

But my best advice is to pour a glass, let it sit and breathe for a while and then enjoy it as it is!

Also recommended by Rum Nation is to pair the rum with a little bit of Valrhona Noir Alpaco chocolate, a dark but delicate and flowery chocolate from Ecuador, perfect for the freshness and light character of Barbados rum. I tried that, and who am i to say no? it was delicious! now i don`t know very much about rum and chocolate pairing but i trust what my tastebuds tells me – this is delicious!

Rum Nation Barbados Anniv Edition bottle

I think this decanter is beautiful and this Bajan rum is top shelf!

Rum Nation Barbados and glass

For those who are interested, here are some stats:

Actual Batch number : L 14/059
Quantity produced per batch : 6.477bottles 70cl 40%
Residential sugar (g/l) : 15
Vintage : Distilled 2001 – bottled 2014
Barriques : American oak – Spanish Oak

If you can try to get a bottle of the Rum Nation – Anniversary Edition 12 years Old Rum!

Rum Nation CARONI 1998

Rum Nation Caroni 98

Not too long ago i wrote about the excellent Jamaica Pot Still Limited Edition rum from Rum Nation which i`m very impressed with and now they are launching their next rum which is none other than a Caroni….

I hold the Caroni rums and especially the heavy types very dear to heart because they are so incredibly GOOD! and i`m so sorry about the fact that the old Caroni distillery is no more making these fabulous rums and unfortunately one day they will be nothing but a sweet memory.

But luckily we are not yet there….and so there is still time to enjoy them and they really are true treasures to sip and savor both neat and in cocktails.

The Rum Nation Caroni is 16 years old have been aged both in the tropics, thus imparting the thickness the angels share produce…(the tropical conditions causes a 60% loss of the distilled spirit due to evaporation) and then aged further in Europe in American Oak casks that contained bourbon then rum Peruano 8yo.

It`s distilled in 1998 and bottled this year, in 2014. The sugar content is only 5 g/l and the alcohol proof is 110 or 55%

The result is an intense dark rum with notes of wood, cloves, cola, coffee and aromatic herbs.

The bottle is a beauty to behold…and the label a work of art – it has the characteristic stamp on it – the stamp on the bottle is due to Fabio Rosso being an avid stamp collector in younger years and now adding a touch of class to the bottles with the stamps and a nod to the country of origin – which i find lovely.

Rum Nation Caroni 98 3

The Caroni Sugar Factory

There were originally more than 50 different rums brands produced in Trinidad – by 1950 it was only 8 and today only Angostura is left. Caroni was established in 1918 on the site of the old Caroni Sugar factory and operated until 2002.

The Caroni sugar factory started to operate a cast iron still in 1918 and at that time there were some eight or ten other sugar factories operating, each producing different types of rums and these rums were bought up by merchants and sold to rum shops all over the island. There were all kinds of “blends” and concoctions being made by both the merchants and the rum shop owners and sold over the counter as “petit quarts”

Eventually Caroni increased the quality of the distilling process and went from the original cast iron still to use a wooden coffey still – until 1945 when they got a copper still which was followed by a single column in 1957 and then a four column Gerb Herman still in 1980.

They produced a number of products like Superb White Magic Rum, Creole Punch Rum, Special Old Cask Rum, Felicité Gold Rum, Caroni Puncheon Rum and Caroni Bay Rum.

For nearly 100 years Caroni has had large sugar estates on the island and was the major producer of molasses. Sadly now since it`s closed no more of their magnificient rums are produced and when it´s gone it´s gone.

And that is sad because the Caroni rums are unique. That said i must confess i haven`t yet tried many but the ones i`ve tried have all been outstanding and original in the same way as the demerara rums are.

And i must say the flavor of the so called heavy Caronis DOES remind me quite a bit of a demerara rum, it has the same full bodied character but without the demerara flavor – but there`s something similar…it has the same type of character despite of being a totally different rum.

My taste notes:

Nose – In the nose i feel wood, orange peel, sugarcane and tropical fruits.

Mouth – It`s smooth with hints of wood, kola and toffee, aromatic spice and tropical fruits.

A few drops of water mellows it out and brings out more fruitiness and i get the flavor of apricot. I like the fruitness in it and it´s not too sweet either with a sugar content of 5 g/l.

Cocktails…

I tried it in a daiquiri and as expected it made a great daiquiri and what i call a “Caroni daiquiri” with it´s distinct flavor from the Caroni rum.

But i have had so many daiquiris posted on this blog that i lost count, so i opted for something else and here`s my take of a really nice cocktail called Creole Fix which i found on Pinterest and which led me to this post (this awesome cocktail was created by Ania Robbins for Texas Tiki Week)

Creole Fix

Rum Nation Creole Fix 2

2.0 oz Rum Nation Caroni-98

0.75 oz fresh orange juice

0.75 oz lemon/lime juice

0.5 oz rich cinnamon syrup

A couple good dashes of Bitter Truth creole bitters (or Peychaud`s) on top of the ice gives the drink both a pretty color and a layer of spicy “creole-bitters/peychaudish” flavor that you`ll feel the taste of by the end of drinking.

Speared cinnamon powdered orange slice and maraschino cherry for garnish!

Shake and pour into tall glass filled with crushed ice.

This is a refreshing fruity-rummy drink and it got a wonderful aroma from the cinnamon powdered orange slice…it`s rummy, fruity, a little spicy and the Caroni rum flavor does shine through.

Rum Nation Creole Fix 3

My conclusion:

The Rum Nation Caroni-98 is a excellent sipping rum and also equally good for various cocktails thus making it a versatile rum fit for a king or queen:-)

If there´s anything i could think of that could make it even better would be a bit higher proof, like 61% to give it some more punch – but in that case, not really for sipping – more for say…tiki drinks 🙂 – but at 55% it´s good for everyone. And besides, nothing stops a tiki drink maker from adding a overproof float if you wish…i think we are quite notorious for that…

If this rum was on the shelves here i`d definitely buy it as a staple for my homebar. I must say that Rum Nation does not disappoint me!

Rum Nation Jamaica Pot Still Limited Edition White Rum

RUM NATION JAMAICA POT STILL bottle close

From Rum Nation comes this outright fabulous unaged white rum, a Jamaican pot-still rum from Catherine, Jamaica.

First thought that hit me when i took the first sip was, this reminds me of a refined, deeper and more complex “third dimensional JWray” but that has much more going on… and it packs a decent punch with it´s 57% ABV or 114 proof.

Yet it´s smooth…and it has no sugar added.

The taste note that`s called glue or wood polish is the same that i call “kerosene” or “JWray” 😀 i find it very appealing, it adds a raw note and vibrant herbal deliciousness. It got that genuine Jamaican pot still funk to it.

And that herbal/wood polish character is part of the flavors in this rum but it got more…

This new limited edition from Rum Nation aims at taking the taster by surprise – it`s not a mainstream white rum they find here. Here`s a rum from a Jamaican distillery using pot stills and willing to experiment with slow fermentation and distillation times to provide a white rum with a markedly estery aromatic profile.

Do i see a slowly emerging trend here? it occurs to me that rums with more flavor are popping up both here and there…and i like that!

I made a grapefruit daiquiri and the drink turned out incredibly refreshing with the rum really shining through.You don`t need much of this rum to totally transform a cocktail.

And i think that`s one of the aims with this rum, to make a rum that can be used in cocktails both in lesser amounts or more, mixed with other rums or by itself to create cocktails of various degrees of flavor experiences. It would fit both in classic cocktails, modern takes or tiki drinks, it´s versatile and fits many styles.

So here are my taste notes:

Nose – Fruity….vibrant and crisp with green banana, tropical fruit mash and peel, caramelized cane sugar, “kerosene or herbal polish”, apricot, mango, citrus peel…green grass, white pepper.

Mouth – Immediately comes the fruity and herbal character of this rum forward, backed by that “kerosene” typically Jamaican flavor, it´s slightly peppery, spicy, vibrant and smooth.

I`d give it a 9/10

Also i need to say something about the bottle which i find lovely, it´s low and rounded, just lovely to hold and pour from and the label on the bottle with a silver colored engraved Jamaican stamp is beautiful! I also like the large black shadow of the name “Jamaica” on top of the grey, it looks classy and modern yet still has some genuine “old” feel to it.

Like old Caribbean..

The stamp on the bottle is due to Fabio Rosso being an avid stamp collector in younger years and now adding a touch of class to the bottles with the stamps and a nod to the country of origin. Nice touch!

I read about the stamps in an interview with Fabio made by Luca Chichizola and you can read the full interview here. It`s a very interesting story about how Rum Nation came to be.

In cocktails – a little goes a long way and here´s room for lots of experimentation since only a moderate amount of this rum is needed to change the flavor of a cocktail.

I wonder what happens if you pair this with a rhum agricole? i`m gonna test that later. Apart from that, the daiquiri really shines with it. And of course this would be great with Ting, the Jamaican grapefruit beverage!

Since i`m a fan of this kind of flavorful rums i go all in with the cocktails!

Grapefruit Daiquiri

Grapefruit daiquiri

2 oz Rum Nation Jamaica Pot Still Rum

0.5 oz fresh lime juice

0.5 oz sugarcane syrup

0.5 oz grapefruit juice (white)

4 dashes Bitter End Thai bitters

Shake with ice and strain into a well chilled cocktail coupe.

This is VERY refreshing…and the Thai bitters adds a bit of bite of spice.

In the Potions of the Caribbean i found a range of drinks i could do but i decided to make Jasper`s Rum Punch and switch out the JWray for Rum Nation Jamaican Pot Still Rum instead. I figured since the flavor profile is similar it would fit with this cocktail.

Jasper`s Rum Punch

RNJ Jaspers Rum Punch

1.5 oz Rum Nation Jamaican Pot Still Rum

1.5 oz Jasper`s Basic Stock Mix

Pour everything into a tall glass 2/3 filled with crushed ice and swizzle until well chilled. Top up with more crushed ice to fill, then swizzle again and finally garnish with mint sprig and lime slice speared to cocktail cherry.

I grated a little nutmeg on top of the ice as well.

To make Jasper`s stock mix – Squeeze 2 oz fresh lime juice into a jar and add 1.5 oz white sugar. Put lid on and shake until sugar dissolves, then add 3 -4 dashes Angostura bitters and 1/4 tsp grated nutmeg. Leave in fridge overnight and shake before using.

And finally, a very beloved oldie – the Chartreuse Swizzle. But this time i changed it up a little bit and used equal parts green and yellow chartreuse to give it a slight more tropical sweetness, both floral and herbal.

Also i switched out the pineapple juice for fresh grapefruit juice, but pineapple juice is tasty too and makes a sweeter drink.

Tropical Chartreuse Swizzle

RNJ Tropical Chartreuse Swizzle

1.5 oz grapefruit juice (white)

0.75 oz lime juice

1/4 oz Falernum

1 oz Rum Nation Jamaican Pot Still Rum

0.5 oz Green Chartreuse

0.5 oz Yellow Chartreuse

2 dash Angostura bitters

Fresh mint for garnish

Add ingredients to a glass full of crushed ice. Swizzle until the glass frost on the outside, garnish with mint, and add straw.

Now Rum Nation knows how to deliver “that little extra” and this they delivered in the form of a box with Valrhona chocolates…so here´s for doing a little rum and chocolate pairing as well!

RUM NATION JAMAICA POT STILL bottle and vahlrona sample pack

The chocolates flavors are Jivara (40% creamy and chocolatey) Tanariva (33% sweet and caramelized) Alpaco (66% floral and oaky) Maniari (64% fresh and tangy) Tainori (64% fruity and intense) Caraibe (66% balanced and velvety) Guanaja (70% bittersweet and elegant) Abinao (70% powerful and tannic) – 8 flavors in all…

Obviously i can`t pair the rum with all of them in this post but after trying them i picked one that i think goes very well with this rum and which i warmly recommend – the bittersweet and elegant Guanaja. The bittersweet flavor pairs well with this rum i think.

So how do you perform a rum and chocolate pairing? well i`m not an expert in this area but rum with fruity or peppery flavors does go very well with chocolate and adding a little water or an ice cube to the glass will help mellow out the stronger flavor elements in the rum as to not overpower the chocolate.

RUM NATION JAMAICA POT STILL vahlrona sample pack

 

RUM NATION JAMAICA POT STILL bottle front

Rum lovers ? i sure i can recommend this rum! go get it if you have a chance…it´s a limited edition. Rum Nation have once again come up with a great rum!