Mhoba Pot Stilled White Rum

Mhoba White Potstilled Rum review by the fat rum pirateMhoba Pot Stilled White Rum. I first came across Mhoba Rum at London Rumfest a few years ago. 2017?

At the beginning there was a bit skepticism surrounding the brand. They had pretty much rocked over from South Africa. Hardly a hot bed of rum and had a big-ish selection. Not just one or two expressions of Pure Single Sugarcane Rum, as they called it. Okay, they had 4 expressions but it seemed a lot more at the time…….

Agricole Rhum from South Africa? Tasted really nice but is there any added sugar? Isn’t the branding all just a bit too slick? Is it too good to be true?

There were a lot of doubts about the brand from a lot of Rum Enthusiasts at the festival. To be honest, they can be a funny bunch. When presented with something a little different, they can often seek validation from others before stating their own opinions. I remember saying I thought it was pretty good but I would like to test it under a Hydrometer. It seemed a little too smooth.

I’ve tried Mhoba at that Rumfest and everyone since, I think. I’ve always enjoyed the rums but no particular one ever stuck in my mind as a must have. So I didn’t buy any until recently. I felt it was about time that we got some Mhoba Rum on the website. So I’ve got 8 of their expressions to review. As a result I’ll keep back some background information and opinion for some of the other reviews. I’ll try and concentrate on each particular rum as much as I can.

I’m not aware of reviewing any rum so far from the continent of Africa? No hang on, Madagascar is Africa so I reviewed a Dzama rum a while back. Maybe my geography is off for some others as well. Apologies if it is.

So first up we have Mhoba’s” cheapest” rum. Their Pot Stilled White Rum. This rum has an ABV of 43%. In the UK it is readily available. You can currently pick up a bottle from The Whisky Exchange for £38.75 for a 70cl. All of Mhoba’s rums come in the 3/4 style square flask bottle with a short neck and synthetic cork stopper. As mentioned earlier, the branding is very slick and very modern. Not as “rustic” as some other rums from similar parts of the world.

Mhoba Pot Stilled White Rum is produced from estate grown Nkomazi sugar cane at the Mhoba Sugar Estate, which is near the small village of Malalane in South Africa. Mhoba Rum is a farm to bottle outfit.

The rum is produced from hand cut estate sugar cane which is fermented for 7-10 days using traditional bakers yeast, with no temperature control. The resulting wash is then double distilled in hand built (by owner Robert Greaves) Pot Stills, of which Mhoba have 3.Mhoba White Potstilled Rum review by the fat rum pirate

It is then reduced down with local pure spring water to 43% ABV before being hand bottled.

So lets see how Mhoba White Potstilled Rum smells and tastes.

First up I will confirm that everything Mhoba have said about no additives in their rums is true. This rum came up clean as per the Hydrometer. So we’re off to a good start.

The nose is crisp and clean, not as grassy or vegetal, nor as alcohol forward as I would expect of an unaged spirit. The double distillation seems to have added a smoothness to this rum. It’s quite an unusual nose with nods to Agricole in terms of the more vegetal notes but there is also a sweet molasses note which reminds me of younger white rum rather than rhum.

Just to add an extra layer – their is also a milky/sour cream note commonly found in cachaça.

Further nosing reveals some chilli heat, ginger and slight zestyness. There is certainly a lot going on with this white rum.

Sipped it is very smooth. It goes down very  easily. Initially the nose translates the funkier vegetal notes on to the palate but it quickly switches to reveal sweeter notes and a touch of smokiness. It’s much cleaner and less funky than I recall some of the higher ABV Mhobas being.

Further sips confirm that this is a really clean and crisp, almost palate cleansing white rum. It is fairly unique and certainly carries a very interesting profile.

There are no real off notes with this rum and whilst I doubt I would regularly sit and sip it, I am expecting that it will shine even more when used in some mixed drinks.Mhoba White Potstilled Rum review by the fat rum pirate

It works really well in both traditional drinks calling for both White Agricole and Cachaca so Ti Punches, Mojitos and Caiprinhas all benefit from the smoothness of the rum and its punchy sweeter/vegetal notes. The creaminess in particular really comes out adding a nice twist.

It works a little better than most White Agricole with cola but only hardcore Rum and Coke devotees like myself will worry about that.

This is a decent start. I hope you’ll continue this Mhoba journey with me. If you wish to do a LOT of background reading on Mhoba Rum then my good mate Steven James over at The Rum Diaries Blog has produced an absolutely outstanding series of articles on the producer.

This has been a bloody good introduction to Mhoba.

 

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