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Rum Reviews

Appleton Estate Jamaica Joy Anniversary Blend 25 Year Old Rum


My series of Appleton rum tastings ended with the Appleton Estate Joy Anniversary Blend - a rum celebrating Joy Spence’s 20th anniversary as the Master Blender for Appleton Estate. Thank you again @rum_come_save_me for this generous sample!

The Joy Anniversary Blend was released in 2018, consisting of rums aged between 25 to 35 years, and bottled at 45% abv. Joy explained that two component rum marques were of particular significance to her: the first a 35-year-old rum distilled in 1981 that was especially symbolic, being the age Joy herself had joined Appleton; while the second was Joy’s favourite pot still marque.

On to the tasting notes, the Joy blend really surprised me on the nose, because my impression of most Appleton releases were often softer, gentler perhaps. Instead, the Joy blend was rather lively, a fresh, punchy nose that reminded me of varnish, unripe bananas, lots and lots of cantaloupe, a little brine and savouriness that lurked beneath the surface, but also gentle milk chocolate sweetness at the back of it all. In fact it was very reminiscent of the higher ester marques that I’ve come across from the Appleton Hearts collection.

While the nose packed quite a bit of punch, the palate was more akin to the traditional Appleton releases. It was bright, very fresh, which was surprising when you consider it was a blend of rums tropically aged for between 25 to 35 years. The texture could’ve been better, a tad thin to my liking at first taste, but as it developed on the palate, it got grippy and chewy all at once. Lots of sweetness from the beginning, milk chocolates, vanilla, and also bright citrus peel. There was the tiniest hint of funk, though well suppressed by fruitier notes of Kyoho grapes. The finish was a long one, with some of the savoury notes carrying through, a little tobacco, and an assortment of roasted nuts. 

Image Courtesy of @weixiang_liu


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