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La Maison & Velier Leads Us To Caroni Paradise #3, #4 and #5

 

   

Last year in 2022, we saw a fresh face in the Caroni stable - a new range that celebrated Cognac traditions named the Caroni Paradise.

As ardent fans might know, the legendary lost Trinidadian rum distillery was rediscovered and brought to the world's attention in 2004 when Velier chief Luca Gargano had found remaining barrels of the heavy flavour rum, best known for its tarry, almost petrol like dark notes that also hides within it a deep fruitiness.

Since then, La Maison & Velier (LM&V) has sought to bottle these rums and bring light to this distillery that has since been demolished. Many of these barrels found had significant angel's share many reaching above 70% as a result of the intense decade and up tropical ageing. 

 

Glass demijohns stored in paradis - a cognac tradition. (Image Source: LVMH)

 

Subsequently in 2019, on the back of over 30 Caroni releases by LM&V, all remaining barrels were brought over to the Cognac region of France in order to hold back any further aggressive ageing. This also served to ensure that the remaining barrels were still fully tropically aged as they were in Trinidad and Guyana, and hence no ageing would take place continentally in Europe. The intense tropical ageing itself has been prized by LM&V for creating intense flavours in the rum.

Thus these rums were brought into an age old Cognac tradition of being filled into glass demijohns for storage and thus sealed away to sleep and left untouched.

As far as Cognac traditions go, demijohns of the special brandy would be left to rest in dark warehouses named the paradis, and thus the Caroni Paradise selection was born.

 

 

Unveiled as part of La Maison's 2022 collection were Caroni Paradise #1 and Paradise #2, which saw a 1996 vintage blend and a 1998 vintage blend respectively.

The Paradise bottlings come specially in mouth-blown glass bottles by Massimo Lunardon in Italy, and are decorated with artworks by Trinidadian artist Che Lovelace, whose works are part of Luca Gargano's collection. The works are inspired by the luxurious landscapes of Trinidad and Tobago, the "bright and light paintings take us into a world without perspective or time, where human and vegetation become one".

For 2023, it appears we have 3 new editions of the Caroni Paradise - Paradise #3, Paradise #4 and Paradise #5.

 

Caroni 1994 Full Proof Blended Trinidad Rum Paradise #3Port of Spain Kissers

Trinidad & Tobago, Molasses Rum, 52.8% ABV, Single Cask #6132, 215 bottles.

 

"For the New Vibrations Creations catalogue, three new expressions have been added to the Caroni Paradise collection from the stocks discovered on the Caribbean island in 2004 by Luca Gargano, CEO of the Italian bottler Velier.

Aged first for 14 years in Trinidad and Tobago, before being sent to Demerara Distillers in Guyana in 2008, this Heavy Trinidad version then continued its maturation in demijohns in Cognac from 2019 onwards.

Beaming with complexity and depth, the palette of flavours and aromas recreates the empyreumatic character that bestows Caroni with its unique personality."

 

Caroni 1996 Full Proof Heavy Trinidad Rum Paradise #4, Shanna and Sita

Trinidad & Tobago, Molasses Rum, 58.1% ABV, Single Cask #3788, 215 bottles.

 

  

"The labels for Caroni Paradise are illustrated with acrylic paintings from artist Che Lovelace, born in Trinidad and Tobago in 1969. Inspired by the Caribbean island's natural and urban landscapes, these works entitled Port of Spain Kissers (1994 vintage), Shanna and Sita (1998 vintage) and White Egret and Mangrove (2000 vintage) wonderfully embody the luxurious and extreme universe of this iconic rum.

To create its Heavy Caroni character, this Paradise #4 was aged in Trinidad & Tobago until 2019 and then in demijohns in Cognac until it was bottled.

A succession of abundantly fruity and nobly woody sequences, it flavour and aroma palette is extraordinarily complex."

 

Caroni 2000 Full Proof Heavy Trinidad Rum Paradise #5, White Egret and Mangrove

Trinidad & Tobago, Molasses Rum, 68.5% ABV, Single Cask #4053, 243 bottles.

"A government-owned distillery, Caroni was founded in 1918 and closed in 2002. This version aged for 19 years in Trinidad and Tobago was distilled in 2000 and was one of the youngest Caroni transferred to Cognac on 12 April 2019 for ageing in demijohns until bottling.

Intensely empyreumatic, mineral and telluric, Paradise #5's palette of flavours and aromas is a touching illustration of the extraordinary personality of this unquestionably unique rum."

 

 

Kanpai!

 

88 Bamboo Editorial Team