I’d much rather have been at the live event – but COVID has moved us all online with the attendant technical glitches, slow response times & the sad loneliness of drinking alone in front of a computer screen.
It does however enable us to taste a wide variety of spirits, have the producers & brand owners tell their stories as well as allow some limited form of interaction.
A rather wet Saturday afternoon had me, my computer & 10 Scottish based rums ready to roll.
Rum is experiencing a bit of a boom. I’m on it because I enjoy it – it suits my palate.
Irish Rum meanwhile is a little behind the curve with only Ion & Blacks releasing Irish distilled rums to date.
So what was on offer?
Ninefold Pure Single Rum, 40%
Distilled in Dumfries using imported mollases this white rum had a lovely fruity funkiness on the nose. A lovely oily palate with an enjoyable spice on the rear.
A very engaging 1st release.
Devil’s Point Golden Aged Rum, 38%
A Deeside – near Aberdeen – based distillery coming out of the craft beer scene, Devil’s Point Golden Rum had a sweet funk, silky smooth on the palate with a soft spice on the rear.
An easy drinker.
Mutagga Cask Aged Golden Rum, 42%
I’d previously encountered this rum at the Fife Whiskey Show – I had the pleasure of attending just before lockdown – and it was a joy to re-experience it’s crisp , clear & slightly smoky funky appeal. Distilled just outside Edinburgh on direct fired alembic stills & aged in whiskey casks.
A lovely rum.
Liv Navy Strength Rum, 57.5%
Another Mutagga product. This is an overproof unaged rum showing off the flavours purely from the raw ingredients & distilling process.
A powerful experience.
Rumburra Orach, Golden Rum, 42.3%
This Fife based company imports their rum mainly from Barbados & does the final processing & marketing of the brand in Scotland.
An easy & accessible sweet rum.
The Rum Festival had a highly informative discussion with Dave Broom & Dr Stanley Mullen exploring the Scottish connection with the slave trade, sugar, rum & the whole imperialist domination of the Caribbean that built much of the wealth currently enjoyed in Scotland – and the West in general – today.
As an interlude – here’s a wonderful blend of Caribbean & Scottish musical culture.
The 2nd half kicked off with the following,
Seawolf White Rum, 41%
A very well presented white rum with pronounced funk on the nose. Distilled in Scotland for a popular pub chain focussing on mixing, Seawolf is nonetheless a lively & spicy little number.
Banditti Club, Glasgow Spiced Rum, 44%
Now I must admit spiced spirits are not my scene – it’s the art of distillation I’m more interested in – so this offering from Glasgow Distillery – apart from the entertaining history attributable to the brand – was a bit of a diversion for me.
J Gow, Fading Light, 43%
Great to be reacquainted with this rum from the Orkneys. Unusually matured in chestnut casks this mildly funky & rather spice forward offering stands out from the crowd.
Brewdog, Five Hundred Cuts, 40%
Five Hundred Cuts would be an aptly named Tory election manifesto – but here is another spiced rum alluring to the variety of botanicals used in the mix. Brewdog are expanding far beyond their beer range with this spiced offering.
Sugar House, Scotch Bonnet, 47%
The bootle looks cool & it’s slightly unusual to have a white spiced rum. Of all the spiced rums this one would appeal to me most.
Hard to pick my winners from such a varied & enjoyable selection – but Ninefold Pure Single Rum & J Gow Fading Light stand out for me.