Rivers Royale Grenadian Rum 69%

Rivers Royale Grenadian Rum 69% Rum review by the fat rum pirateRivers Royale Grenadian Rum. Rivers is a historic brand of Overproof rum from the Caribbean Island of Grenada. It is not a Grenadine flavoured rum. Definitely not.

It is a rum a lot of Rum Enthusiasts will hear about. It has taken me quite a long time to try this. I finally found a store in the UK/Europe that had it in stock. Many, will hear about this rum but nowhere near as many will ever try Rivers Royale Grenadian Rum.

I am pretty sure, it is the only rum I have reviewed that has been banned by the authorities from air travel. Whilst visitors, to the River Antoine Distillery where this has been produced, since 1785 are free to buy bottles of Rivers Royale Grenadian Rum, they are not permitted to take the 100% real deal edition outside of the island.

Believe it or not this 69% Overproof has been produced for the export market as (apparently) Airlines do not like rum over 70% ABV or 140 proof flying with them. The island juice is straight from the still. Often at anywhere between 75 and 80%. There is a little bit of competition on the island, between the River Antoine Distillery and Clarke’s Court as to who has the “strongest” and best Overproof white rum.

This rum is produced from Sugar Cane Juice, rather than molasses. It is distilled in a Copper Pot Still. As mentioned earlier it is bottled straight from the still. This version is diluted with some water but it is totally unaged.

Presentation wise. Rivers is nothing to write home about. There is only a very basic front label and the bottle is a standard bar bottle, with a black screw cap. The label is likely a re-creation of an older incarnation. Bearing in mind what is in the bottle – is probably quite apt. It has a kind of appeal but it does look a little like a small child has been let loose on it……

Rivers Royale Grenadian Rum 69% Rum review by the fat rum pirateShould you wish to buy a bottle in the UK it was most recently available here at £36.99. However, as I type I notice it is currently out of stock. I picked my bottle up a few months back now.

River Antoine Distillery is powered by one of the oldest watermills in the Caribbean (if not the world). I’ve read a lot about this rum but there aren’t many recent reviews around. This one from The Lone Caner dates back to 2013.

So lets warm up those taste buds with some of this fiery grog…….

Crystal clear in the glass but just a touch oily. The nose is not as funky as Jamaican Overproof rum. That said it does have some fruity similarities. Pineapple juice, banana and some hints of blackcurrant/summer berries.

This is overlain by a slightly sour note of curdled milk and very tart gooseberry. It has a briny and slightly savoury note. This reminds me of Bounty Fiji Overproof Rum and other rums which have come from the South Pacific Distillery.

There is slightly metallic note on the nose. It’s a big powerful nose but it is not as pungent as I was expecting. It has a kind of dirtiness to it. Very rustic but at the same time not completely out of control hogo hooch.

Sipped at the full 69% ABV is not something I would recommend. It’s rough, unaged and the metallic/briny notes on the nose certainly come to the fore. Along with what I can only describe as a very sawdust like woody spice. It has a slightly off putting, almost sour note as well. This mingles alongside some very tart and sharp gooseberry. It all just doesn’t quite come together to well.

Once the initial sips are complete you are left with a real burn in the stomach and a real feeling of drinking something which you perhaps shouldn’t have……..

It is of course more a rum to be used in punches and cocktails and used sparingly to add flavour rather than sipped neat. If you do wish to sip this and actually taste a bit more of the structure of this rum, you really need to add a liberal amount of water to bring it down to something near drinking strength.

If you do try this at around 46% ABV then you will appreciate more of the sweeter notes of Rivers Royale Grenadian Rum. A touch of clove and some nice grassy notes which are not quite Agricole Rivers Royale Grenadian Rum 69% Rum review by the fat rum piratelike. More a mixture of St Lucian and Fijian rums.

It’s quite a strange rum. I was expecting something similar to a Jamaican Overproof. I don’t think it is all that similar to such rums other than the proof and colour.

As a mixer or used in cocktails it is certainly a good substitute for a whole host of different types of r(h)um. Whether it is better than a decent Rhum Agricole Blanc or a Jamaican Overproof is debatable.

It will always have a certain following due to its rustic charm and high ABV. Being reasonably hard to get does it no harm either.

All things considered its got a decent flavour and does a good job in mixed drinks but I think you can do better at the £36 price point.

Solid but not spectacular.





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