Overview 104 – Habitation Velier Hampden HLCF 2010

Photograph copyright © H.Kristoffersen

I really feel it in my fingers, I really feel it in my toes. Funk is throughout us.

To maneuver issues alongside after the traditional Blairmont, I feel the following pure step can be a number of the newish stuff coming from everyones favourite Italian indie.

The Habitation vary already has a couple of years beneath its belt, and encompass some fairly younger single nonetheless expressions, starting from conventional column fra Rhum Rhum, to the pot stills of Worthy Park, Hampden, Foursquare and Port Mourant.

I my world all these rums are principally inspirational items, present instances that excist to teach on what sure forms of nonetheless can produce and convey to the desk – so to talk.

In addition they present hyper particular profiles for use as components in cocktails.

Most of them can be too intense and/or insane for the informal rum drinker. However that shouldn’t discourage you from giving them a go. We’re all explorers of the rum world and most of us received’t suppose twice earlier than dipping our snouts into one thing we should always have simply left alone.

As a part of the unique Habitation launch, the Hampden was one of many first instances (if not the primary) that the world laid eyes upon a tropically aged Hampden. And so as to add to that, a pure pot nonetheless beast.

Being six years outdated it comes off as a reasonably younger rum in a world the place we’re accustomed to rums of 10+ years of age. However the younger age might very effectively be very intentional.

The HLCF is a standard jamaican marque indicating which ester profile we’re coping with. For the reason that Jamaicans deal in an enormous vary of ester rely, they wanted labels to distinguish. HLCF being a excessive ester profile – however no the place close to the best – I’m positive we will anticipate one thing reasonably intense from this bottling.

An ester rely of 550 gl/laa is talked about on the field, however aside from it being a comparatively excessive worth in comparison with the overwhelming majority of obtainable rums on the market, I do not know what to make of it but or any want to geek it out additional at this level.

One thing I do know what to make of, if the proof. 68,5% ABV. Take that pesky little 40%’ers.

This rum is on steroids and can simply beat your manly tonsils into submission. On paper not less than. Let’s see the way it handles in a while.

Figuring out the place this comes from and who bottled it, it shouldn’t be essential to level it out, however after all this incorporates no sugar as acknowledged proper there on the label. Good.

The place the black, monolithic look of the Velier Demeraras introduced efficiency, heft and energy, the Habitation vary sports activities one thing else.

With partly opaque brown medication bottles (though I don’t suppose medication was ever ordained in 70 cl bottles), a really massive lable with outdated type writings and what seems to be like hand drawings of the originating nonetheless, this line of rums glow of medication, science, training and data.

“Dr. Reliable’s Miracle Medication” … however there’s no quackery afoot right here. Not within the least.

The field is sturdy, beige and mimic the aura of each bottle and label.

The entrance label mentions all of the related particulars, and on the again we get a little bit historic perception: Particularly that this can be a first ever. Domestically, tropically aged rum from Hampden Distillery, Trelawny, Jamaica.

Within the glass the attractive straw colored liquid strikes with grace because it coates the edges and by no means lets go.

Already once you pull the cork, you understand one thing loopy is stirring. A fast stab of funk lashes out at you as you pour the shot. And because it breathes within the glass much more funky fruits leap at you.

Thick, tremendous ripe bananas involves thoughts first. It virtually feels prefer it oozes over the sting of the glass. It’s that form of thick.

Hitching a journey on the banana ooze we discover concentrated inexperienced apples and mangoes.

There may be the everyday sprint of cola which was higher yesterday and one thing barely rotten beneath.

When folks say “Funky Jamaican” that is what I consider. It’s an overabundance of fragrances – principally delishious tropical fruits, but additionally loss of life and decay.

At this level I’d anticipate it to be reasonably excessive proof, however nowhere close to the listed 68,5%. There isn’t any critical nasal stabbing happening apart from the primary few whiffs. However these appeared extra playful than ailing supposed.

First tastes reveal some keen burnt rubber notes, that rapidly dies off and units the scene for the extra fruity primary course.

As you let it progress to the edges of you tongue it opens up and turns into tremendous tasty with a fruity salad akin to the notes from the nostril. The bananas, mangoes and apples are again and actually doesn’t carry way more.

There’s a little oak within the combine as effectively however not sufficient to take a correct stand.

It does set hearth to every part it touches and allows you to do not forget that we’re coping with a simply south of 70% beef cake and that one ought to tread evenly or endure the implications.

After the primary few sips it does develop into extra manageable and once you lastly get to benefit from the full blast, it’s equal pleasure, sweat, pleasure and remorse. Remorse that you simply didn’t purchase a case of those as a substitute of simply the one bottle.

At first the warmth appears to by no means need to go away. It retains churning on and it hits you want waves pummeling the shore.

Solely once you lastly get used to it, it slowly begins to die off taking all the beautiful fruity flavours with it in a terrific massive dance off.

The dying fruits leaves extra space for the oaks, and ultimately you’ll get a little bit spicy finale to remind you of the barrel growing old.

A number of minutes later whereas the sweat nonetheless trickles out of your brow you’re left with a imprecise sense of the tropical fruit bonanza and an oily really feel coating the mouth.

Score and closing ideas
This was by far one of many largest and greatest shock throughout my down time. The primary time I attempted it was with some fellow rum nerds within the Rum Symposium Copenhagen and we have been all blown away by it. I keep in mind folks instantly pulling out their telephones to purchase bottles from eBay and different webshops to safe their very own bottle.

Later I attempted it alone with loads of time to savour the second, and it was equally unbelievable.

For me this explicit rum marks the essence of why Hampden stays as one in every of my favourite distilleries.

The extreme flavours we get from them are distinctive and in my eyes unrivalled by anyone the world of rum.

The place the majestic, monstrous, behemoth Demeraras are precisely that, Hampden delivers essentially the most delicate ballerina of a rum with an enormous flavour bomb up her skirt – pardon my french.

And what’s to not like about that?

I might have wished for a extra big range of flavours and extra proof of the growing old. However when it tastes this good, would I even need it any totally different? Fact be informed, I’m unsure.

My love for this rum is the only purpose I’ve been reluctant to soak up the newer Habitation Velier Hampden expressions. There may be additionally an decrease ester LROK and a mix of LROK and HLCF on the market. However to today, I’m very pleased with my HLCF and I’m unsure I need to uninteresting down the ester rely.

Guess it’s pricy then? That relies upon what you normally fork over for a bottle of rum. However someplace within the neighborhood of €100 doesn’t scare me off in any respect. Not once you get a rum this lovely and effectively crafted.

Hell, in the event that they hadn’t put it within the science-y Habitation package deal, and had gone for a flashy decanter type bottle and put it in a flowery engraved wood field with a magnetic seal, it could have pulled a worth 3 times as excessive and no one would have frowned the least little bit.

However this appears to comply with a latest development the place excellent rums doesn’t must be very costly as effectively. Take Foursquare and their insanely low cost costs for one. The Habitation bottlings all vary from €50 – 70 for unaged varieties and €90 – 120 for the aged ones.

That’s actually not unhealthy contemplating the huge high quality within the bottles.

Let’s have extra of this! Pure, correct rum in a worth vary the place most can play alongside.

Come to the tip of this second evaluation within the new Rum Nook age, we’ve to settle the rating.

I don’t care… this rum belong proper at the most effective finish of the size. With flavour, magnificence and craft like this, we gotta attain for someting alongside the road of a …

Score: 90/100


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