Rum Artesenal are a small Independent bottler from Germany. They have bottled a number of rums from various sources over the past couple of years.
Unfortunately due to the size of the operation and the language barrier, I have been unable to find any other information on them.
Their rums are available in Germany, Denmark and other parts of mainland Europe. I have not seen any bottlings from them in the UK.
Their rums are presented in stubby rounded bottles with cork enclosures and a very simple logo. They post distillation and bottling dates on the bottles along with the usual ABV and country of origin information. The first thing to note is that these rums seem fairly inexpensive, for what they are. This rum retailed for around 50 euros. However be aware that the bottle sizes are not 70cl they are in fact 50cl or half litre bottles (almost pint sized).
So here we have a Demerara rum from Guyana. This one is from the Enmore Estate/Still. It was distilled in December 1990 and bottled in September 2015 making it just shy of 25 years old. It is Single Cask and bottled at 61.2% ABV. Which they note as Cask Strength. This would suggest that it has been mostly European aged.
Recently I have received information which suggests all Demerara rum which is exported from DDL is not aged for particular long periods before it is removed from the tropics.
What still the rums were distilled on can become a bit of a mystery. DDL comprises of a number of stills. Many of these stills were at one point housed at another distillery. In some instances more than one distillery. As a result some rums are labelled according to the still they are produced on and some are noted by the distillery they came from. Others are just denoted as Diamond Distillery (the original name of the distillery where DDL now operate).
Luckily it seems many rums relating to “Enmore” are from the following still.
The Enmore two column still comes from the Enmore Distillery/Sugar Factory. It was moved to DDL in 1993. It is the oldest operating Wooden Coffey still and can produce 9 different marques of rum from light to heavy. The rum is often used in Dary and Navy blends.
Unfortunately, this bottling refers to a Pot Still. From looking at Marco Freyr’s outstanding essay on Demerara rum I have learned that there was a pot still at Enmore Distillery at the time of this distillation (in 1990). It was a single Wooden Pot Still formerly from the Versailles distillery. Confused? You want to try researching this. Word to the bottlers can you please just note the still the rum came from in future? It will make things a lot easier! If anyone has more certain information please let me know.
I’ve reviewed a few Enmore rums – with varying results. In line with most of the Demerara stills I have found both good and bad rum from most.
With little further information to add we will move straight into the nosing and tasting.
In the glass the rum appears to be uncoloured. For a 24 year old rum it is light in colour – gold rather than the mahogany colour these aged rums are often presented at. With a little help from E150.
Which is nice to see the bottlers are confident in the liquid and haven’t felt the need to adulterate the colour to suit popular opinion. The Hydrometer also agrees that this is a spirit bottled at 61% (or thereabouts – its not accurate enough for 61.2%)
Sipped this rum is quite familiar – it reminds me of a Bristol Enmore I reviewed a while back.
It’s a dry, spicy rum with not much in the way of sweetness. It has a hint of sweetness at the very beginning but it quickly gives way to a more harsh slightly metallic note. I’m fairly sure that this rum is from the same still as the Bristol 1988 Enmore.
Even watered down it is still quite edgy and unforgiving. It’s not particularly complex. There isn’t a great deal going on here. There is a lot of oak and I think all the vibrancy and youthful sweetness has been drained out of this rum by the ageing. 24 Years is a lot of ageing – especially in the same cask and particularly for a rum which is from a single cask. It is worth noting at this stage that this rum has not benefitted from being blended with other rums, as is so often the case.
This probably should have been bottled much earlier or blended with other rums. On its own it is simply just too dry and you end up feeling like all you are really tasting is a charred oak barrel. Rather than become richer and more fruiter like a Velier bottling this has been dried out and overly spicy.
I wish I could give a few more tasting notes but unfortunately this is just all a bit one dimensional.
Disappointing and definitely not the greatest Demerara you will ever try. I am grateful that I was given the opportunity to try this particular rum. I wouldn’t totally discount this bottler in future – it is never fair to judge an Independent bottler on one failed experiement.