Happy Easter! I feel like we should have done a Happy Ester tasting but let’s safe that for some other time and stop at Port Mourant again. We never do get fed up with it, do we!?
James MacArtuhr’s Port Mourant 1990 (50%): Unfortunately we know neither the age nor the bottling date of this one but it probably has been bottled around 2010, perhaps even a bit earlier. Nose: Lots of vanilla and crème brûlée, paired with anise, salted caramel and a wee herbal touch in the background. Very nice. After a while also minimally fruity element such as sweet apple or apricots. Palate: Not as gentle as the nose suggested. Instead, we get the full Port Mourant “slap” including anise, a sea breeze, wet wood, pepper, salt water and Pecorino perhaps. Oh yeah, this one is nice and definitely not too young. Moreover, the 50% feel just fine! There’s also a subtle but easily noticeable smokyness which reminds me of an old chimney. The finish is medium long and provides a good overview of what we’ve just experienced, doesn’t offer anything new though. A very nice way to finish this rum, however. This is a favorite from my early rum days and it remains great today. I am very glad that I got the chance to try it again. (87/100)
Bristol Port Mourant 1990 17YO “Port Finish” (46%): Port Mourant and fortified wine is just a match made in heaven. If you are a frequent reader of this blog you will probably know that we are extremely fond of this combination. Nose: Plenty of Port Mourant and plenty of Port wine, just the way we like this. It starts all typical (anise, salty popcorn, wet wood), then, somewhat oddly, makes a left turn to more medical aromas, only to come to notes of red berries, milk chocolate, herbs, and more wood. Very nice so far. Palate: My first impression is thin, my second is chocolate-y, my third is bitter and my fourth is sweet. It really is this rather odd sequencing. I think the easiest way to understand this is to think of forest-berry-flavoured, extremely dark chocolate. All of this would be extremely good if it were to act together, but here it is really much rather the kind of sequence described above. You always have reflections of the previous group and kind of an anticipation of the next but never all of them at the same time. Later dark cherries, Mon Chéri and some of the spices we typically associate with Port Mourant. Finish: Kind of the same, just that here it is mostly the bitter, cocoa-like notes that dominate. However, every now and then the sweet berries come through as well. A very complex rum if you want, but also a good demonstration that complexity not always comes with greatness. It’s a really cool one though. (85/100)
Bristol Port Mourant 1990 25YO “Oloroso Finish” (46%): Nose: Sweeter than the eight year younger Bristol with the Port finish but it also smells fuller and more settled all in all. I get raspberry, cherry, grenadine, milk chocolate, caramelised popcorn and few of what I’d associate with Port Mourant. Since the nose is really good, that’s not really an issue here. Then wood, vanilla and herbs. Mmhhh. Palate: Very sweet and slightly sharp. The rum is completely dominated by the finish but I also get quite a few salty notes, minimally medical herbs and quite some wood. Later also some of those bitter notes we know from the Port finish version, which eventually turn out to be close to chocolate/ cocoa as well. It’s starting to make more sense now. The finish is very supportive in that regard as it is longer than you’d expect. It comes with notes of chocolate, wood, salty grenadine and sour cherries. There are many cool things about this rum but I just cannot love it for some reason, even though there aren’t many arguments to be made against it. (84/100)
Boogieman Uitvlugt (Port Mourant) 1990 27YO (49,7%): I remember that the price of this one was extremely fair when it came out but the artificial limitation cast a poor light on the bottler nevertheless. Nose: The maturity is evident but here we get a fruitiness which we didn’t find in any of the previous rums. It’s somewhere between mango and papaya I’d say. Then anise, vanilla pudding, salty popcorn and a pronounced but perfect impact of the cask. With more time, the nose becomes more and more homogeneous and I can detect further notes of pepper, sugar and even toffee. Palate: Like we are used to by now, the palate differs quite a bit from the nose. Most importantly, it is much saltier and comes with wet wood, coconut water, white pepper, oregano and a good Margarita. It is very balanced and almost easy drinking, but certainly interesting enough. Finish: Long and salty with coconut, wood and hints of anise. Sometime the oregano pops up as well. A very good rum and I am not missing much. It just lacks this ‘sensational’ element which would lift it to the next level. (88/100)
Velier Uitvlugt MPM (Port Mourant) 1990 17YO (66%): Note also that we are moving way up in abv, which may be an more important factor. Nose: Not sharp at all but instead extremely aromatic. Given that it is Port Mourant, it is super fruity with mango, pineapple and papaya but the characteristic anise notes can be found as well. Behind that quality marzipan (not too sweet), wood, salted caramel, toffee and probably also something close to jasmin petals. I love it! Palate: Very smooth, flavourful and creamy. I get some almond past, crème brûlée, anise, wood, some fresh herbs, tonka, vanilla but once again very few of the fruity notes from the nose. That’s exactly the Port Mourant I like. With the third sip also some of the cheese-like notes, as well as more umami flavours of olives or boar salami. The finish is medium long and a bit of the weak spot here. I get dry wood, spices and Gewürztraminer. Well done. Too bad El Dorado fails to consistently release rums like this… (90/100)