Oct 202014

It’s no surprise that I start the “Makers” section of this website with Velier.  Perhaps no other company since Rum Nation has so captured my attention the way this one has, and with both it’s about their focus. The scotch makers like G&M, Cadenhead, A.D. Rattray and Bruichladdich also produce year-specific, limited editions of rums, but their product lines are somewhat diluted by not concentrating solely on rums but on the whiskies which are their primary products (at least in my opinion).  Velier in contrast has made its name primarily by doing something quite different  – they issue all of [Click here for the full review…]

 Posted by on October 20, 2014 at 2:33 am
Oct 162014
Velier Uitvlugt 1997 17 Year Old Full Proof Rum - Review

An exceedingly well-made, clean, relatively light rum with remarkable depth of flavour and beautiful mouthfeel. (#184; 78/100) *** Velier, as its barrels mature in Guyana, issues annual releases when they feel they are ready, much as Rum Nation and other craft rum makers do.  This presents a particular and peculiar problem to rummies, because there is no consistency to any of them: in other words, while a DDL El Dorado 21 Year Old will be more or less the same no matter when you buy it, a Velier PM 2013 release will not be the same as a Velier PM [Click here for the full review…]

 Posted by on October 16, 2014 at 10:06 pm
Oct 122014
Damoiseau Rhum Vieux Millésimé 1980 18 Year Old - Review

  *** A deeply rich and remarkable rum – 1980 was a damned good year for this company (#183. 83/100) *** When one buys a raft of intriguing aged rums and then samples several dozen more (especially after a protracted absence), the issue is which rum to start reviewing first. Since my intention on this go-around was to run through several Caroni rums from Trinidad, as well as to give more weight to agricoles from the French West Indies, I decided that one of the best of the latter deserved some consideration.  And that’s this sterling Damoiseau. The Bellevue au Moule estate [Click here for the full review…]

 Posted by on October 12, 2014 at 8:05 am
Oct 122014
The Lone Caner's Back

  *** All “Wizard of Id” references in the photo aside, I must admit it’s good to return to reviewing. The steady, continuing hits on the site, the continual online and offline questions I get and then the explosion of interest after the reddit post went up, all lit a fire under my nether regions.  Plus, after a year in the Middle East, you would not believe how much I missed writing. So I cut a deal with my wife that once a year I’d attend a European Rum Festival (Berlin, London or Madrid), and made a private deal with [Click here for the full review…]

 Posted by on October 12, 2014 at 7:47 am
Jul 152014
Rum Nation Jamaica 1986 Supreme Lord VI 26 Year Old - Review

  Rich sipping rum of remarkable complexity and flavour, one of the best I’ve ever had out of Jamaica. (#182. 80/100) Rum Nation’s Supreme Lord VI (the Jamaican 26 year old 2012 edition by any other name) is as good as its 2010 brother, if not actually surpassing it. It shows what can be done with an aged rum if time and care and patience – and some artistry – is brought to bear.  I loved the Supreme Lord V, which I reviewed a while back – and I must say, the VI does dial it up a few notches. [Click here for the full review…]

 Posted by on July 15, 2014 at 8:29 am
May 102014
Velier Skeldon 1973 Full Proof 32 Year Old Rum – Review

  It’s official.  Velier has raised the bar for super premium rums, with an extraordinary 32-year old blast from the past that will excavate a punt-wide trench in your wallet if you ever find one. (#181. 87/100) The 544-bottle run of the Skeldon 1973 Old Demerara Rum has, since being released in 2005, become something of an object of cult worship.  In 2012 a single bottle went for sale on eBay for close to  €500. I searched for three years before I found a gent in France willing to part with his (and at a cost I’m glad my wife [Click here for the full review…]

 Posted by on May 10, 2014 at 10:21 pm
Apr 172014
Velier Port Mourant 1974 Full Proof 33 Year Old Rum - Review

  A worthy addition to the Port Mourant canon. A magnificent, excellently rich and fruity full-proof rum.  (#180. 81/100) *** Allowances should be made for my personal palate: I do believe that rum deriving from the Port Mourant still in Guyana may be among the very best available, largely because the distillate runs through the only wooden still in the world. This provides the rum with a depth of flavour and richness that I have consistently scored high in all its iterations: Berry Brothers & Rudd 1975, the El Dorado 21 and 25 (PM forms part of the blend), Bristol [Click here for the full review…]

 Posted by on April 17, 2014 at 4:30 am
Mar 312014
10 Reasons to Prefer Rums...

Poor rums. They always get a bad rap. That piratical background, the snootiness of the whisky world (and my friends, who cast me the pitying glances reserved for congenital defectives, every time I trot out a new and favoured libation). The classiness perceived of all things British. The purported complexity of the Scottish brew, the Russian tipple, or the Mexican hooch. We who sing of the pleasures of the cane just don’t get no respect. Sometimes I feel like a go-player in a chess world. But you know, for a long time whiskies, tequilas, vodkas et al, took back seat [Click here for the full review…]

 Posted by on March 31, 2014 at 9:23 pm
Mar 192014
Three Italian Fantasias

  These three rums are aged curiosities. There’s one from the 60s, and two from the 70s. Information on their origins is maddeningly obscure. The labels are crap, and the corks aged and faded and cracked by decades of rough handling. There’s never been a review of any that I was able to find, and their makers are likely long gone. Yet these three bottles exist, and if for no reason than their history, I review them here, make what remarks I can, score them as best I’m able. Italy in these days is no stranger to rums, of course. [Click here for the full review…]

 Posted by on March 19, 2014 at 7:46 am
Feb 252014
Velier Blairmont 1991 Full Proof 15 Year Old Rum - Review

  A paradox of rum, marrying a lighter than expected profile with a stunningly intense full proof taste, compliments of the House of Luca (#179. 81/100)  *** When I first poured a shot of the Velier Blairmont 1991 15 year old rum into my glass (after having waited over a year and a half for the privilege), I immediately remarked its colour: a straw coloured light amber rum. After sampling five other Veliers in the past year, all of which were dark, brawny, bearded beefcakes, this came as something of a surprise. According to the literature on the bottle, seven [Click here for the full review…]

 Posted by on February 25, 2014 at 9:39 am