Bristol Classic Rum Providence Estate 1990-2012

imageIn late 2015 a curious bottling of Trinidad rum – Providence Estate arrived on the scene from Bristol Classic Rum.  It certainly caught my attention somewhat more than perhaps yet another Caroni offering.

Which turned out to be a bit of shame for me as this is in fact another Caroni Offering (we think)!

Providence Estate was/is a sugar plantation. Bristol secured some years ago a few barrels of rum distilled at Caroni with molasses from the Providence Estate located near Chaganos just south of the Coporo River. Using water with a low mineral content and distilling the spirit on an old patent still a slightly heavier rum than normal was produced.

Bristol have bottled this rum which was distilled in 1990 at varying ages – each time they have finished the rum in Sherrywood and this most recent release is no exception.  It has been matred here in the UK.  Bottled at 46% the rum comes in the usual stubby Bristol bottle with a yellow colour scheme and a pretty hefty price tag of around £110.

The Sherrywood finish has resulted in a Hydrometer Test which displays 26 g/L of possible added sugar or other additives.  As John Barrett the CEO of Bristol Classic Rum is very much looking to create authentic if at times slightly eccentric rums.  I do not think John had deliberately seeked to cynically add sugar to this rum.  The result is likely the result of unsteamed sherry casks.  I won’t speculate any further.Providence Estate Rum Review by the fat rum pirate

I’m pretty sure I read somewhere that this rum was distilled at the Caroni Distilery if there was a distillery or still at the Providence Estate I am happy to be corrected.  As always information is happily welcomed!

Either way this is a 22 year old Trinidad Rum which should be a pretty interesting spirit.  John Barrett of Bristol Spirits has informed me that this will be the last bottling of the Providence Estate series.

The first thing I note about this rum is how dark it is, this must be due to the Sherrywood and 22 years of ageing as Bristol do not add Caramel colouring and are more than comfortable releasing rums with natural colour.  It’s a very dark brown with a reddish hue.

The nose is reminiscent of other bottlings from Bristol -their Spiced and their Port Morant 1990-2015.  It’s sweet and rich full of raisins – the Sherry influence is huge.  The nose also has a slightly “old” note to it slightly musky perhaps.  I find this in a few Bristol bottlings and I fancy it is due to UK ageing.  It may sound unpleasant or a criticism but it isn’t its just distinctive and different.

As you dive deeper into the nose you detect more notes sulphur, a little tar and tobacco.

Sipped you are presented with a rum at the sweeter end of the spectrum.  You get that sherry like flavour, sweet dessert wine especially on the entry.  Rum and Raisin ice cream.  It’s smooth but with enough oomph to still satisfy a “proper” rum drinker.  The 46% ABV is welcome.Providence Estate Rum Review by the fat rum pirate

To be honest, this rum seems to be a lot lighter than some of the Caroni’s I have tried.  It has taken on a lot of the Sherry especially when you first sip.  You do get a little of the Caroni “twang” but I think Bristol have done the right thing in marking this as Providence Estate, rather than Caroni.  It would puzzle the Caroni lover.

For all its sweetness at no point do you feel like you are drinking anything other than rum.  It still retains enough rum character to prevent it slipping into the Ron Zacapa or Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva territory.  The finish for instance is long and has enough notes of tar, tobacco and leather to satisfy.

It’s a very easy drinking rum.  It’s an interesting and so far as my rum journey goes a very unique rum.

It’s very enjoyable and another rum that only Bristol would release.

4 stars







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4 comments on “Bristol Classic Rum Providence Estate 1990-2012

  1. It’s Caparo river, Chaguanas, Trinidad – not far below (South) from Trinidad’s capital, Port-of-Spain, and West of the Caroni swamp national park. The old Caroni distillery did many different “marks” of rum, some heavy and some light. Even Velier has released both, and they do differ significantly. Perhaps the lighter spirit has inspired Mr. John Barrett to use sherry casks here – as well as to name it according to the old, long defunct sugar estate and distillery.

  2. Thanks for the review.
    Is it very sweet compared to the Velier 12/15?

    And any idea if Bristol Spirits have more rums from 80s/early 90s?
    Do they have a new version for the 74 Caroni?

    • Thanks as always for reading!
      It is noticeably different to the Velier 12 and 15 Year Old Caroni’s especially the 12.
      I’ve spoken to Bristol Classic Rum and their stocks of this the Rockley Still, Enmore and the Caroni 1974 are now pretty much depleted their won’t be anymore runs of them.

      However they are putting out a lot of very interesting rums from the likes of Foursquare, Santci Spiritus and rums from the likes of Haiti and Mauritius.

      • I was looking at this and was at two minds whether to get it. You cant find many 90s caronis these days but i am not so much fun of sweet rum.

        Pity. Had some hope that they might have more rum from 70s/80s that they had not bottle it.

        Do you know why they release bottles with delay in the market?

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