There are some days that are better than others. Today is such a day.
Velier Port Mourant 1972 36YO (47,8%): This one might be “only” 35 years old, by the way. Nose: Lots of glue, Rum soaked raisins (I think they must have used old Demerara Rum for this!), Szechuan pepper, old pipe tobacco, a whiff of sulphur, black salsify, antique oak, now also some anise, more dried fruits such as dates, figs or plums and clearly also briney notes slightly reminiscent of soy sauce. This is a seriously dope nose my friends! Later even some waxy notes that alternate with the tobacco and the spices. While there’s actually a lot more to be found here (e.g. dark berries, thyme or oregano, almonds), it is quite difficult to get hold of all these scents, let alone to name them! Palate: Slightly disappointing after that amazing nose. The texture is pretty good, and a sharpness can only be found in the form of pepper or other strong spices. Flavourwise, we get tobacco, mango with chili flakes, those soy sauce-like notes, oak, molasses, chocolate, orange bitters and sweet potatoe. It is good, but again it feels kinda like we got betrayed by the Rum in the sense that the nose made a promise that the palate simply didn’t keep. Finish: The medium long to long finish is dominated by spices, orange bitters, chili flakes and molasses. What’s remarkable is that there are essentially no bitter notes here. All in all, we have to register that the nose was out of this world but that the rest couldn’t keep up with it, unfortunately. How often did we say this now? (91/100)
Cadenhead’s Uitvlugt Distillery (Port Mourant) “PM” 1964 36YO (69,3%): This looks and sounds like love in a bottle. Nose: Oh boy. Nothing in the world of spirits can beat the best of those old Demeraras, that’s for sure! This stuff is ultra intense, still not sharp at all and complex as hell. We get plenty of spices (allspice, pepper, anise, you name it), dark fruits such as plums, prunes or figs, muscovado sugar, a good amount of varnish, just the right amount of oak and in general perhaps the perfect balance between sweet (honey!?), dry, fruity, spicy and woody. After a while also rich tobacco, a hint of menthol and cold brew coffee. Darn, this is insanely good and even after an hour or so I believe that I can still discover something new. Palate: Oh my delicious smoothness. The texture is very thick and silky while the intensity is absolutely unreal. It starts with coffee, antique wood, the melange of spices from the nose, almost syrupy molasses and muscovado before moving over to not too bitter cocoa, prunes, thick plum juice, a whiff of pencil shavings, some wood lacquer, delicate pecans, orange oil and raisins. Considering the flavour profile alone, it is a very standard old school Demerara Rum in a sense. It is just doing almost everything better than almost every other such Rum out there. Finish: Almost infinite with coffee, cocoa, dried fruits (plums, dates, raisins), oak, muscovado and towards the end also some fruity notes. A very worthy finish to this magnificent piece of Rum history. These old Demeraras are just in a league of their own if you ask me and this particular Rum proves once again why Cadenhead’s has once been considered to be the best bottler in the game. (96/100)