Nicely this nearly feels new once more…..its been a fairly some time since I final wrote something and personally I used to be not sure that I’d ever write once more. However right here we’re…..like a bear that has been hibernating for a great few winters, it was time to awaken and reacquaint myself with my environment.
The Rum being assessed at the moment is from a distillery steeped in historical past, a distillery that also utilises strategies lengthy forgotten by a big bulk of the fashionable Rum making world. We’re after all speaking about Hampden. Sculptors of magically pungent and infrequently breathtaking Rum utilizing uncooked supplies, surrounding setting and an enormous wealth of Rum making data courting again to the 1700’s as their medium of alternative.
I’ve beforehand written about Hampden Property, each distillery bottlings and impartial bottlings and by clicking right here, you possibly can see a number of of these posts. I used to be additionally meant to go to the distillery in early 2020….however a sure situation know globally because the Covid-19 pandemic put pay to that. Evidently, Hampden Property produce some gorgeous Rum at numerous ester ranges……these embody:
OWH (Outram W. Hussey) – Ester stage of 40-80 g/hlAA
LFCH (Lawrence Francis Shut Hussey) – Ester stage of 85-120 g/hlAA
LROK (Mild Rum Owen Kelly) – Ester stage of 200-400 g/hlAA
HLCF (Hampden Mild Continental Flavoured) – Ester Degree of 500-700 g/hlAA
<>H (Typically referred to as Diamond H) – Ester stage of 900-1000 g/hlAA
HGML (Hampden George MacFarquhar Lawson) – Ester stage of 1000-1100 g/hlAA
C<>H (Typically referred to as C Diamond H) – Ester stage of 1300-1400 g/hlAA
DOK (Dermot Owen Kelly-Lawson) – Ester stage of 1500-1600 g/hlAA
To realize a few of their actually excessive ester releases, additionally they utilise one thing referred to as the Cousins Course of. Named after the legendary ‘Island Chemist’, H H Cousins, this excessive ether course of was launched at Hampden Property by Charles Allan in 1905. This system was capable of present that the “flavour” of Jamaican Rum was not solely the results of alcoholic fermentation by yeast, however by acidic fermentation by micro organism. The Cousins Course of basically utilises a collection of steps to show the fatty acid ester precursors from previous distillations right into a concentrated liquid that can be utilized to create some amazingly excessive ester Rums. In fact, Hampden Property additionally utilise Muck (a horrific concoction of acids that create a bacterial dynamite for secondary fermentation to unlock different esters and volatiles) and Dunder (stillage from earlier distillations retained and added to future fermentations). Fairly an arsenal of instruments at their disposal and the talents concerned of their creation and deployment can’t be underestimated.
Hampden 12 Yr Previous 2009 Jamaica – Quarterdeck (Duncan Taylor) – 50.8% abv – 0g/l components
I used to be first alerted to this Rum by Eric March, a member of the UK Rum Membership fb group that I run with the prolific Rum Blogger, The Fats Rum Pirate. He contacted me asking if I knew any info on the marque of the Rum because the bottle offers nothing away other than a date barreled of 30.06.2009, a date bottled of 17.02.2022, indication that it’s cask quantity 27 that had an outturn of 335 bottles and a 12 yr age assertion. I prompt that working again to different bottles that I’ve tried up to now, this can be a legendary DOK marque. Eric duly bought the bottle and upon tasting, being the excessive ester Rum Geek that he’s, agreed with my suggestion of DOK. We nonetheless nonetheless, haven’t any official affirmation because the bottler doesn’t have the knowledge. Eric was variety sufficient to ship me a pattern of the Rum together with one of many glorious Neisson Profil 105 and a loopy Savanna HERR. As quickly as I poured the pattern, I knew that I wanted to select a bottle up. It had each acquainted, and unfamiliar qualities and I used to be conscious that I’d needed to spend extra time with the Rum.
Nostril: There’s actually no mistaking this pour for something uninteresting and uninteresting……I’m fairly positive that my neighbours can odor it by means of the partitions. Vastly vivid, pungent estery acidity pours from the glass. Layer upon layer of inviting tropical fruit sweetness. A trilogy of Pineapple….charred and caramelised with tip-top cream, freshly lower and touching the fermenting fizz of over ripeness, an enormous paper bag of pineapple dice sweets. Dried candy Mango and Papaya items. Stinging pear drop acetone and a contact of tropical fruit vinegar. Somebody utilizing waxy furnishings polish in one other room after which mixing fiery recent ginger root with cloves. Walkers Previous Long-established Hazelnut and Caramel slabs. This DOK has a bit of extra to it although…..there’s an underlying and for me fairly unmistakable tart blackcurrant and sticky liquorice side to the rum…..it genuinely does really feel like somebody liquidised a bag of sweets and poured it into the barrel. Even two hours after pouring, actual growth continues to be taking place on the nostril with extra subtlety felt within the type of tomato crops within the backyard on a sunny day and a few faint look of recent herbs.
Palate: The primary hanging factor about this Rum on the palate is the insane mouthfeel, it’s huge, oily and chewy. Candy and in addition Bitter too. That liquorice and blackcurrant comes throughout nearly immediately as quickly as your tastebuds have stopped dancing round your mouth with the sheer depth of the liquid. A “soapy” observe across the facet of the tongue……nearly like a pine bathe gel. Vivid, acidic, estery fruit as on the nostril. Candy candy caramelised pineapple. Aromatic Banana chips and sticky, chewy tender liquorice convey the sweetness with the creeping bitterness of a great darkish chocolate and the tart berries. The mid palate brings Fennel seeds. Celery salt. White pepper. Salty salami. Olive brine. The lightest look of drying oak spice. The largest drawback with DOK is attempting to cease it simply evaporating in your tongue into nothingness. The oiliness of this bottling nonetheless helps it linger for greater than a few heartbeats and brings one thing that almost all DOK bottlings that I’ve skilled appear to lack……a end. That is the sum of its components with caramelised nearly burnt pineapple, the merest trace of barrel spice (white pepper and clove) and nutty toffee morphing into these liquorice and blackcurrant sweets with only a trace of menthol, resinous pine and drying barrel affect.
In conclusion: It’s a fantastic bottling. I’m struggling to seek out any faults, off notes or flaws. Even the abv feels proper. They’ve accomplished a fantastic job with this bottling because it offers in waves and lasts as an expertise for for much longer than others of its ilk. For me not a each day drinker, however its actually not some unapproachable brute both…..age has refined it and knocked the aggressive chip off its shoulder to create a effectively rounded, if nonetheless pungent and loud expertise.
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