Precious Liquors and Malt, Grain & Cane New Yarmouth 1994, for Bar Lamp Ginza and Rum & Whisky Kyoto (26 years)
Background: another local bottling by Malt, Grain & Cane, this time in collaboration with Precious Liquors and two pretty famous Japanese rum bars. I was asked the favour of writing tasting notes for their releases, which I did without passing judgement. However, to turn this into a review, I would need to give it a score, and in some sense, justify that score. I try to be as objective as possible while doing so. On another note, the label mentions the rum is 100% pot still distilled, which is big if true, considering there is no other confirmed pure pot still 1994 New Yarmouth on the market. I could not get a confirmation about its mark, so here's hoping that its taste can shed some light on this mystery.
Nose: chocolate rye bread; one of the sweeter rye whiskeys, or perhaps a high-rye bourbon; toffee; muscovado sugar; caffe mocha; black forest cake; dried figs and prunes; rose syrup; cranberry juice; blackcurrant cordial; some savoury funk, in the forms of tang cu li ji (a style of Chinese sweet and sour pork) and wok-fried chestnuts with sugar; the typical Jamaican influence becomes clearer, deeper into the glass; ink of a permanent marker; overripe papaya; jackfruit; soursop; pink guava; the base notes are creamy and confectionery; sandalwood; mango sticky rice; kueh salat; pan-fried tapioca cake; ondeh-ondeh.
Palate: hot on arrival; honey; maple syrup; black forest cake; dried figs and raisins; maltose candy; the sweet maltiness of a single malt whisky; things take a savoury turn on the mid-palate; burnt rice crisp; mango sticky rice; overripe papaya in whipped cream; stir-fried jackfruit; pan-fried tapioca cake, garnished with crispy fried garlic and shallot; the back-palate is vegetal with hints of sulphur; sugarcane juice left to air overnight; struck match; LPG leak.
Finish: moderately long; Christmas spice cake; eggnog; coconut shavings in gula melaka; coconut-based nyonya confectionery; camphor; mentos; the grassiness of an old agricole; the aftertaste is shrouded in creamy, musky sweetness; sandalwood incense; white chocolate; bubblegum milk.
Conclusion: this seems to sit right in between the Rum Artesanal 1994 and 2009 New Yarmouths, so there is neither strong evidence for nor against this being 100% pot still. A little more Jamaican fruitiness and a little less Foursquare resemblance could go a long way in making it more interesting. Still a very nice rum in its own right, just not worth the upcharge for its (tropical) age.
Score (assuming a normal distribution with mean 50): 85/100
Image Courtesy of u/zoorado.
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