At the Velier Live 2018 in Bari (Italy), which took place on Monday, March 12th, the Italian distribution company of the same name set the tone by giving to taste some of its novelties in rum and exhibiting its next releases. So, what is this exactly about?
A booth entirely dedicated to their novelties at the entrance of the show, reveals the news as for example the two English Harbour from Antigua, finished in Port and Madeira casks.
Always topical, we also find in tasting the two vintages 2007 and 2005 from Neisson, selected by Luca Gargano for the 70th anniversary of the Velier company.
Next is the Jamaican Worthy Park – Single Estate Reserve, specially bottled for Velier’s anniversary as well. The difference between this one and the classic version is that the latter reaches 57% ABV (114 Proof), while the usual version only shows some 45% ABV (90 Proof).
On the side of the cane juice, I finally discovered the Australian white rum of the Husk Distillery. An extremely vegetal and floral rum, which is much more perfumed than I thought in the first place and which, I think, deserves all our attention in the future, even if the amateurs of the kind will prefer a little higher alcohol level compared to the 40% it holds.
Also had the chance to try the Caroni 2000 from which only a few barrels were bottled for Europe, because it would have been originally intended for the US market that Velier, in collaboration with LMDW, have been conquering from their Brooklyn warehouse in New York. Without taking into account the price evolution of the Caroni rums, I was quite disappointed by the latest releases compared to the first ones I had the opportunity to taste which were the 20 and 18 years old from 1992 and 1994. However, I was pleasantly surprised by this 2000, a 17 year old which I must admit, made me reconnect with this distillery and its rums. It reminds me indeed the 18 years of 1994 with the classic Caroni notes, an impressive explosion in taste and an impressive length from the top of its 55 ° (110 Proof). A great surprise to me!
We also discovered a 2012 single cask rum, from the Antigua Distillery, selected by Luca “Ruruki” Gargano. A rum with 218 g / hlpa congeners, which makes it extremely tasty, although for me, I think the 68.5% ABV hides a little bit all the flavors this rum has to offer. Maybe a lighter version of it would be welcome? True fans of that style will like it though…
An 2001 blend of Port Mourant and Diamond from Guyana, which was blended in the barrel barrel and then bottled in 2017, remains available in a very limited edition. At 54.3% (110 Proof), it will delight fans of the Demerara style with its extremely complex taste.
From Guyana again, we will also have noticed the light rums (37.5%) of the Diamond Reserve range, destined to the bar universe, thus competing with the El Dorado range with slightly lower prices. While the white is in my opinion a simple mixing alcohol without any complexity, the dark has some nice coffee / dark chocolate flavors and is very correct, while not being very fond of spiced rums, the spiced remains simple and just good!
Place now to the new (Jamaican) rums, which will only come out next September:
we start with a series of 4 rums from the Longpond distillery in Jamaica:
Longpond 2003 (15 Yrs /60%) – Longpond 2007(11 Yrs /60%) – Vale Royal 2006 (12 Yrs /60%) – Cambridge 2005 (13 Yrs /60%)
The Hampden distillery also returns to the forefront with their “Great House Rum” (46% ABV – 92 Proof). This rum should be entirely reserved for the US market, but of which we will maybe find some “lost” bottles in Italy.
Finally, Velier blended following marks: OWH 2011 – LROK 2010 – DOK 2010, for a new bottling which will be available in full proof version (59% ABV – 118 Proof) and in a lighter version (46% ABV – 92 Proof).
A rich comeback despite the expenses to be expected.