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DESCRIBING RUMS IN A WAY THAT PAINTS A PICTURE AS WELL AS GIVES THE EVERYDAY READER REFERENCES THAT ARE BOTH FAMILIAR AND RELATABLE

I started in the world of wine tasting around 2006. These tastings were always blinded, so you had to work on finding and building a repertoire of a broad range of descriptors in order to piece together what you had in your glass...So when it comes to smell and flavour description, I’ve been doing it for quite a few years. In 2015, my interest in rum was sparked and since then I have thrown myself deep in to the world of this amazing spirit and wonderful people.


/Kris von Stedingk

 
 
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Rum De Luxe Wild Series #3 - Panama 20 year old. 65.2% abv.

Rum De Luxe Wild Series #3 - Panama 20 year old. 65.2% abv.


Heading to the Rum De Luxe guys based in Denmark and digging in to one of their Wild Series releases, which all in all are some pretty heavy hitters. Editions 1 & 2 were DOK followed by a 17 year old Enmore and now we’ve got our hands on a 20 year old pot/column blend from Panama bottled at a “smooth” 65.2% abv. This one was distilled in 1999 and spent its time ageing in ex-bourbon barrels. With 279 bottles at cask strength, one can be pretty sure that the barrel spent the vast majority of its time non-tropical ageing. Interestingly, this rum has had 9g/l of sugar added to it pre-bottling, which is nice information to know prior to diving in…now time to take the dive!

On the nose - Well, it’s Panama! I don’t know why, but one of the first things that always tells me I’m in Panama is a hit of cork on the nose, and this is no exception. The difference between getting cork on the nose here, as opposed to in wine, is that it is quite pleasant. Not astringent or damaging, but just a subtle wet woodiness that reminds me of smelling the cork inside my parent’s whisky bottles when I was a kid (not sure how that comes across)…Continuing on the woody notes, there are heavy spices here, with emphasis on dried cinnamon bark and nutmeg. hefty amounts of oaky vanilla and dark chocolate. Freshly painted nail polish blends nicely in with dark red fruit notes. Black cherries, overly ripe plums and soft nectarines. None of them are going toward their dried counterparts here. We’re not talking prunes and raisins. Just sweet dark stone fruits. Hints of orange peel and rooibos tea. Some buttery sweet caramel…It is all quite powerful, yet not has hot as one could expect from the 65.2%. If I didn’t know the abv, I wouldn’t be as cautious as I am going to be taking my first sip…

On the palate - Ok, here the first thing I pick up on is the sweetness. It coats the mouth immediately, but in quite a nice rich, nutty almond-milk-like way. The sweetness is definitely balanced out by the high amount of heat from alcohol, which is more clear on the palate than on the nose. Rich dark caramel, dark chocolate with hints of maple fudge. The corky woodiness carries through on the palate as well. Some red fruits, again dark cherries and plums, although here they are definitely taking a back seat to the heavy-woody-vanilla and cinnamon-spicy and overwhelmingly nutty characteristics. With every new sip I get more and more creamy unraosted almonds. And cork. And almonds. And cork….and on and on…It’s actually interesting how it bounces me back and forth between the two. The nail polish/varnish notes are here as well, but seem to also be balanced off by the sweet caramel-like notes. Not as complex on the palate as I was expecting from the nose, but definitely not a boring or easy going rum. Uff!

The mouth feel is thick and the finish is long and hot. If you’re looking for a punch in the face rum, you’ll probably like this. Sweetness is well integrated.

Not a bad bottling by the Danes. Not bad at all.

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