Sunday 28 August 2016

Rum Olympics - rounds 4 & 5

The closing stages of the first round of the Rum Olympics brought together some disparate spirits, some were Usain Bolt, others were more Paula Radcliffe in Athens.

Read about other rounds:
Round 1
Rounds 2 & 3


Rum thirteen

Aroma - Ooft, this one is a bit harsh on the nose, a weird mixture of windolene and petrol (2)

Taste - A burnt edge with rubbery, ashy notes like eating a burnt rubber band (2)

Finish - Oddly chemical tasting and lingering (1)

Bad, just bad. I'm 50/50 on what this is and I'm going with Mehkong (Thailand) (5)

Rum fourteen

Aroma - Lots and lots of toffee with some coffee coming through and a sort of toffee popcorn feel to it. (6)

Taste - As expected from the nose this is sweet, but not overbearing with some alcohol burn that helps offset the sweetness (6)

Finish - Surprisingly clean for everything that's gone before, slips down fairly easily (6)

Enjoyed this one, sweet but not too sweet and very easy drinking.  I think this is Ron Millonario (Peru) (18)

Rum fifteen

Aroma - Bland, there really isn't anything coming off this at all, I could tell you it's alcohol and that's about it (1)

Taste - The problem with such a bland nose is that there's no warning of the taste.  This is bitter, harsh, like walking into a school changing room and being enveloped in a cloud of Lynx Africa (1)

Finish - Lingering and bitter (1)

This glass didn't need washed afterwards, it needed exorcised, this is competing with Stroh for the bottom spot so far, stuck for what this might be No idea (the depths of hell) (3)

Rum sixteen

Aroma - Some light butterscotch, not too much going on but pleasant enough (4)

Taste -  A bit of funk and some punchiness with sweetness coming in later (4)

Finish - Quite dry, not too long, not too short (4)

Inoffensive, but equally not that exciting, this would be a good bottle to have on the table and drink away while doing something else.  I think it's Chairman's Reserve (St Lucia) (12)

Tuesday 9 August 2016

Rum Olympics - Rounds two and three

A double session on Sunday saw a marathon between La Petite Mort and Bennets Bar taking in rounds 2 & 3 of the Rum Olympics.  A group of us, fulled by an excellent brunch started with the selection at La Petite Mort.

Read about other rounds:
Round 1
Rounds 4 & 5

La Petite Mort 

Rum five

La Petite Mort selection
Aroma - Some alcohol burn, with woody notes but overall quite subtle (7)

Taste - Some light toffee notes and a bit of bite and a definitely drying (6)

Finish - Quite smooth, long and dry (5)

Quite enjoyable and complex, I think it's a Ron Abuelo (Panama) (18)

Rum six

Aroma - Really very little here, some grassy notes but mainly just alcohol (2)

Taste - Lot of burn with some citrus (2)

Finish - Harsh and quite a lot of burn (1)

Not great, I think it's a cachaca so I'll go with Abelha Cachaca (Brazil) (5)

Rum seven

Aroma - This is what despair smells like (1)

Taste - Weird, industrial, burnt rubber(1)

Finish - Long, genuinely unpleasant (1)

This has to be Stroh, which is by a distance the worst rum I've ever tasted. Stroh (Austria) (3).

Rum eight

Aroma - Quite light but sweet, plenty of butterscotch (7)

Taste - Quite sweet but not overpowering, pretty well balanced (8)

Finish - Long, sweet but with a little burnt edge to it (7)

Enjoyable and very sippable, my candidate is Plantation Barbados 5yo (Barbados) (22)

Bennets Bar

Bennets rums

 Rum nine 

Aroma - Really not much here, some alcohol notes and maybe some coconut (4)

Taste - A bit of aniseed and coconut (4)

Finish - Nothing really, it's just gone (2)

An underwhelming low ABV white rum, I say Bacardi (Puerto Rico) (10)

Rum ten

Aroma - Dark toffee notes and some alcohol warmth (8)

Taste - Sweet toffee with a hot edge to it, a kind of hot buttered toast flavour to it (8)

Finish - Long, warm and very smooth, no burn worth mentioning (7)

Really stuck for what this is so I'll say it's a Flor de Cana (Nicaragua) (23)

Rum eleven

Aroma - the burnt sugar on top of a creme brulee (8)

Taste - Punchy, aggressive in a good way and praline notes (8)

Finish - Long, very long with nutty warmth (8)

I'm fairly sure this is Pussers (Navy) (24)

Rum twelve

Aroma - A little funky and sweet, a bit confusing (4)

Taste - Toffee, sweetness, almost cloying but not quite (4)

Finish - A lingering sweetness (4)

A bit one note this, it's sweet, very sweet but that's about it. Crying out for some citrus to cut through it. I'm saying Diplomatico Blanco Reserva (Venezuela) (12)

Some very, very sippable rums in these two selections. Yes rum 7 is awful, but that serves the purpose of showing that every other rum you will ever taste is better than this.  Watch this space for rounds 4 and 5 in the weeks to come

Friday 5 August 2016

Rum Olympics - Round one

Mystery bottles
As the Fringe gets into gear here in Edinburgh and the city is invaded by one man shows, Mongolian throat singers and people are slowly drowned under piles of flyers what better excuse to sample 40 rums across the city and decide which is best? 

The Rum Olympics at the various outposts of the Kilderkin Group is a blind tasting of 40 rums between now and 25th September with each bar serving 4 mystery rums in blind bottles as you can see to the right. I assume the second batch of 20 would go on at the start of September.

Now, at £10 for a 4 drink flight that's a pretty good value for 4 rums, but equally I think we can reasonably assume there's not going to be any Diplomatico Single Vintage in one of these bottles.

Mystery measures
With each rum being scored from 1-10 for aroma, taste and finish it's certainly going to be interesting what comes out on top come the end of September.

On to the first 4 rums themselves that I had at the Blue Blazer last night, as I've no idea what any of them are and the bar staff were giving nothing away I'm trying to guess what these are but may well be horribly wrong on a lot of them.

Rum one

Aroma - Grassy, hamster cages and hot melted butter with a bit of harsh alcohol. Definitely an agricole. (2)

Taste - A bit underwhelming, some burn and rawness but not much else. (2)

Finish -   Grassy and scratchy. (1)

It's definitely agricole, I'm going with La Mauny Blanc (Martinique) (5/30)

Rum two

Aroma - Toffee, toffee and more toffee, it warms up and smells like a caramac bar (3)

Taste - Immensely sweet with bitter burnt edges and a really weird mouthfeel (1)

Finish - Burnt, little harsh. This might go well over ice cream. (1)

Really not sure what the hell this is, I'll guess at Don Papa (Phillipines) (5/30) 

Rum three

Aroma - Really getting nothing here, there's some strawy/grassy notes but not much else (2)

Taste - Not much here at all, it's fine, inoffensive but nothing to really grab a hold of your taste buds (2)

Finish - There really isn't a finish, it's just gone (2)

It's light, inoffensive so probably Spanish so I'll go with Ron Cubay Anejo (Cuba) (6/30). If Coldplay could be embodied as a rum it'd  be this.

Rum four

Aroma - Coffee notes along with the usual caramel, a little aggressive (6)

Taste - Bitter edges to an overall sweet profile, little dry (6)

Finish - A little burn on the way down and a bit dry (6)

Definitely more oomph to this one, so I think it's an El Dorado 5 year old (Guyana) (18/30)

Overall it's entirely possible I'm being harsh in my scoring of the rums that disappointed me so I'll keep an eye on this throughout the events, these were interesting rums that I'm looking forward to finding out what they actually are.

If you're in Edinburgh for the festival I'd recommend giving this a go, it's a lot of fun.

I'll post updates as I go through the rest of the rums

Read about other rounds:
Rounds 2 & 3
Rounds 4 & 5