Advent Calendar 2018 Blind Tasting Part III

We’ve crossed the halfway line (oh my, this really went quickly this time) and continue with doors 13 to 18.

tcrlu99Transcontinental Rum Line Uitvlugt 1999 17YO (Guyana, 46%): The nose is full of the dark and heavier aromas such as wood, liquorice, molasses, cocoa and palm oil. Later also coconut, green coffee beans and bamboo. It smells quite nice but I have a feeling that it might be too thin. Palate: More of the same, albeit in a light version. You notice that the rum is quite good but the dilution really tampered it. Too bad. Bamboo, cocoa beans and palm oil are the most obvious associations but the other notes from the nose can be found as well. It is a one trick pony that might have been a really good one. But let’s not talk about that anymore… The finish is medium long with many of the “darker” notes. Wood, molasses and liquorice as well as some spices can be found here. 5/10
Is this supposed to be a PM? No way. My first guess was Enmore, then Gardel (or some other Guadeloupian), then a Spaniard, only to go back to Guadeloupe again. This rum doesn’t really have a lot in common with other Port Mourants of the ’99 batch. It would be the first non-PM we get from Uitvlugt from this year and I still believe it is an Enmore. Too bad they don’t mention the still.

pf99#Plantation Grand Terroir Fiji 2009 9YO (South Pacific Distillery, Fiji, 44,8%): Here we have a nose which is very much to my liking. Fruity esters are paired with notes of plastic, a whiff of slightly medical herbs and quite some influence from the cask. I get barbecue, dark chocolate and rum-raisins. I’d be amazed if this weren’t a Fijian. The palate is thinner than the nose suggested and doesn’t transfer the flavours quite like we are used to. Biodegradable waste, barbecue sauce, grilled pineapple and the herbs are the most prominent notes here. Finish: Short with rubber, plastic, biowaste and a whiff of herbs. A decent one. If only it weren’t reduced so much… 6/10
Did this really just happen!? A non-sweetened rum by Plantation that is not from their Extreme series!? It’s nice to see that this bottler is also slowly but steadily making steps in the right direction. And the rum is a real bargain, given that the quality is right and the price is sheer sensational. Nicely done!

orsOur Rum & Spirits Diamond 2003 14YO (Guyana, 64,5%): The nose is very column still driven and rather alcoholic. There’s a lot of wood with conifer, forest honey, glue (not the good one), walnut oil and some weird note akin to cheap bubble gum on top. The alcohol is really tickling in the nose. I do have a rough idea but let’s see. The palate is rather weird. The alcohol isn’t integrated quite as badly as I thought after nosing but flavourwise it leaves quite a bit to be desired. Standard column still rum a la tobacco, caramel and leather meet odder notes such as resin, walnut oil, burnt sugar and the cheap bubble gum again. The finish is medium long with walnut oil, conifer and resin. My guess is a bad Belizean, mostly due to the resin. 3/10
I didn’t have much time for this one but nevertheless I don’t think I would have been able to figure it out. It is just too different from the other 2003 Diamonds (see here or here) and is nowhere near as good, unfortunately.

simonsSimon’s Valkyrie “Spechteshart” 5YO (Germany, 48,8%): Huu, is this pomace brandy? It sure smells like it and I don’t think I know anything in the rum world that comes remotely close to this. Besides the pomace, I get plums, plum jam, alcohol, apricots and mirabelle. Really close to the booze you might get from your local winemaker. The palate is rather thin but still fuller than what we are used to with the real pomace brandies (this is supposed to be a rum after all!). And it comes with more nuances such as liquorice, anise, cinnamon or cloves. All these spice-notes should come from the cask though. Then more stale and cheese-like aromas. A weird one. The finish is quite long actually, even though I believe that this is a relatively young one. I get the stale notes, (too) old walnuts, wood and the pomace again. There’s also a strong astringency towards the end. This might be some young European (German, Portugal or any country with a proper wine-region, really) stuff or a rhum from Guadeloupe (some weird Reimonenq) perhaps. 3/10

vhVelier Hampden 2010 7YO (Jamaica, 62%): This one is rather easy as there just aren’t that many rums/ distilleries in this ester range. And even among Hampden there aren’t many rums with this exact profile. In the nose we get a mix of marzipan, pastry, nail polish remover and lots and lots of esters. We need to take a sip to make sure but I am already quite sure what this should be. At the palate we find grilled pineapple, oranges, acetone, pastry, almonds & marzipan and then no herbs (this is how you can tell this one apart!). The finish is rather long with more of the same. The rum is not super complex but I just love it. 9/10
So indeed it’s the rum we’ve already reviewed here.

a1710laperle.jpgA1710 La Perle 2018 (Martinique, 54,5%): A “white” one. I get salty, vegetal and fruity (apple, clementine) notes in the nose. Sea-breeze, minerals and coconut water are further associations. I immediately have to think of Clairin. At the palate I find more of the maritime and salty notes and would even point out algae now. Salty coconut water is probably a good description of what I can taste here. Then some of the mineral and vegetal notes but these are mostly variations of the maritime counterparts. The finish is way worse than the rest of the rum in the sense that it is way more neutral in flavour. I mostly get the salty and coconut water notes. I am guessing Vaval, even though the spirit is very clean. Maybe they have changed their production techniques a bit!? 5/10
Ah, A1710. I never had one of their rhums before. The spirit is very mild and clean. It’s not bad but personally I am looking for some rougher and edgy expressions.