My very first real tasting of Rum was done several years ago with Matthieu Gouze from Plantation. One of my first favorites was their Guatemala XO but since then, I had stayed on the idea that this bottler might be offering too much « saucé » rum for me in fact.
Error, because they sweet some of their cuvées transparently, but they understood with their range « Extreme » that rum geeks appreciated moderately the practice. So, here we are 5-6 years later discussing one of the many new products from Maison Ferrand, the 2003 Clarendon and its splendid label and its dosage equal to 0 grams per liter.
Distilled therefore in 2003 at Clarendon, property of « National Rum of Jamaica » which itself is owned by a third party by Maison Ferrand, this rum will have benefited from a long fermentation of two weeks and an aging of 16 years in Jamaica in bourbon barrels and 1 year at Château de Bonbonnet in Ferrand cognac barrels. The mark of this rum is MMW which of course means … er I don’t know.
This bottling has 49.5% abv and comes from the assembly of 29 barrels of this vintage. As for the rest of the figures, you will find all the information you want on the superb label below 🙂
Mahogany, old gold
Funky, to say the least!
Directly, the roasted pineapple and the green banana caress our nostrils and transport us directly to the tropics. The more candied fruits are not to be outdone, with an almost prune and Corinthe grappes.
Then, we quickly fall on a much more greedy profile where the marzipan, the almond paste, the frangipane combine with a light woody, nutmeg and a nice touch of very delicious vanilla. All with a slight trace of Jamaica-specific solvents and olives.
It’s really Jamaica style, but not over the top. It is a rather greedy and balanced nose where alcohol is really well integrated.
The palate is sweet, but with enough pep not to fall into grandmother’s liquor 🙂
We find there the fruity profile of the nose with a more significant presence of woody I find. The spices are intermingled with more exotic notes, all on a super gourmet profile.
Candied fruit is still very present with this prune, dried mango, green banana and a hint of very delicious vanilla.
The finish is rather long on a chocolate bitterness which can disturb at first, but which you get used to quickly enough, the first sip passed.
Very nice surprise that this Clarendon in Plantation mode. Given the more woody finish, I think that the past year in Cognac barrels has helped to make this juice a delicious one.
The kind of bottle ideal for presenting a novice what a Jamaican rum is, while surprising a more experienced lover.
Well done ! Now let’s go see what they did to us with Fiji 🙂