|Serie||TROPICAL REEF FISH SERIES|
La Réunion suggests either Rivière du Mât or Savanna. Right, everybody says it's Savanna. The name The Duchess is a seal of quality, unless she would be the Duchess of Sussex, naturally (but we're republicans, not out business). Colour: dark amber. Nose: it's full of walnut stain, pipe tobacco, old varnish, the darkest, strongest chestnut honey, and an avalanche of ganache (chocolate and raspberry in this case). Some very old, sooty and flinty oloroso too. With water: that's funny, some sugarcane and some shoe polish coming out, esters, rather black olives this time, albeit in moderate amounts, and a serious amount of liquorice and chocolate. Mouth (neat): careful, it tears you apart. Very heavy juice, all you would detect is some bitterer marmalade. No chances taken… With water: the best part, it becomes very tarry and salty, and ridden with precious tobaccos, cold meats and walnuts. Nocino! Finish: very long, thick, saucey. Chocolate and say sauce. Something floral in the aftertaste, perhaps borage? Comments: in France when you say rum/rhum, everybody thinks Martinique or Guadeloupe, but La Réunion, a.k.a. l'Île Bourbon, should never, ever be overlooked. Now, where did they find this cask?! They are very rare, I think.
Very oak focused and initially, caramel and dark molasses. Not very green and therefore not very sugar cane like. Dark cherries, dark oak, golden syrup.
The palate is dark with oak, black cherries and molasses. Red chilies and quite some heat after a while. It does mellow, but it takes quite some time. Lots of oak, all the way through.
The finish is largely the same as the palate, albeit a bit more mellow. Quite warming, and long, but it does get a bit more narrow towards the end with the focus on the oak.
My sample stated 57.2, but the website states 67.2. I’m not sure which is correct, but I would assume the website has been checked more meticulously. There’s heat, of course, but not as much as I would expect from something that is over two thirds alcohol. Lots of great fruity flavors are showing up, and it’s more sweet than the Uitvlugt. Good stuff, but the alcohol does push some notes back that would have made it a bit more complex, I’d imagine.
This bottle was produced at the illustrious Savannah distillery. The Savannah distillery does not permit independent bottlers to be released under this brand name. Therefore, we have had to name this release La Réunion as a geographical reference.
This distillery has been on our radar for a while now, and finally we found a cask of age that gave us the quality we were looking for. This is what defines The Duchess selection process: only settle for the very best and don’t spring for anything based on just a name. Quality must always come first!
There’s only a hand full of releases of this significantly older age and we are proud to introduce this fine and rare French style rum to you!
Nose: a very well-balanced nose! Eucalyptus in the background, ripe fruit esters in the front combined with a whiff of smoke. Mango chutney, walnuts and oak chips.
Taste: yummie rummie! Although this has an alcoholic content of 67.2%, this tastes like sipping a 46% Scotch whisky. There’s a reason we bottled at cask strength. Don’t change a winning formula!
Anyways, the taste brings a little brine, a bit of smoke and almonds evolving into (cotton) candy and honey. It becomes more and more flavourful after has had some oxygen, so let in breathe!
Finish: the finish is long and lingering. New flavors of lapsang souchong. This goes on and on for minutes after every sip!
Balance and Complexity
This a dram with great depths and complexity. It keeps evolving. One sip you’re tasting brimstone, and the next, candy. Almost drinks like a good single malt. This is a 90 points plus rum in our book!