Saint James Heritage

Saint James Heritage rum Review by the fat rum pirateSaint James Heritage rum.  It comes in their standard tall, rectangular bottle.  The name suggests some kind of retro rhum agricole, perhaps a throwback to times gone by.

Nope nothing of the sort.  The Martinique agricole producers haven’t even released an Agricole this time.  It’s actually a blend of rums from 6 different islands. It is a blend of both cane juice and molasses based r(h)ums.

The 6 islands are Martinique, Guadeloupe, Guyana, Trinidad, Jamaica and Barbados.  A who’s who of r(h)um if ever there was one.  Missing perhaps only Cuba from the list in terms of reputation!

I first noted this and the Saint James Reserve online.  Both were (and still are) priced at under £20 for a 70cl bottle. I think I paid little over £16 for this.  It is bottled at 40% ABV and comes in the standard Saint James bottle as already mentioned.  The screw cap is a good standard and the bottle has some nice embossing on the neck.  The Saint James brand is instantly recognisable.  Even if the rum contained in this bottle is not.

The rums in this bottle are aged for only 12 months so this is a pretty young blend by any standards.  The releases of this and the Reserve are an attempt to muscle in on the “molasses” or more mainstream rum market.  I believe the rum has been available since 2015 and has been exported to Europe and the US.

I’ve not seen anyone else review this rum.  Nor have I seen it garner any attention in the rum world.   What little commentary I have found on this suggests most people confronted with a Saint James rhum, expect and are disappointed when it isn’t an Agricole.

Fortunately before I bought this rum I was aware it was not exclusively an Agricole.  I figured it worthy of a purchase as both an interesting rum to review on the site and a cheap weekend mixer, if it turned out none to great.

My understanding is that none of the rums in this blend are aged any longer than 12 months.  Which probably reflects the price I paid for the rum.  Once again the word “Premium” is used in its loosest term!

Saint James Heritage Rum Review by the fat rum pirateWhen poured the rum is a light to golden brown colour.  It is a little dull to be honest.

The nose is interesting.  I’m getting a lot of pot still style young Jamaican rum.  There may be a few more vegetal notes in there somewhere.  The blend is overwhelmed by the Jamaican component.

This is not necessarily bad thing but overall this smells very young.  There is a lot of sweet alcohol rather than nicely developed fruity Jamaican rum notes.

I can’t in all honesty really pick out much from the other rums in the blend from the nose.  If I nosed this blind I would say it was a young Jamaican rum.

Whether that would be a compliment or not will depend very much on how I find this rum when I taste it.

Sipping the rum is very surprising.  The alcohol burn I was expecting from the young rum.  However, the complete lack of flavour is the surprise.  I was expecting a lot of Jamaican flavour from the nose.  I’m not saying I was expecting this flavour to be particularly nuanced or entirely pleasant but I was expecting a bit of a hit from the Pot Still.

It’s just not there.  It just tastes of rough “booze”.  Their is a little kick of flavour for a half second maybe but it quickly fades.  It is much more like a cheap Trinidad supermarket blend – with even less flavour.  It’s insipid.

Mixed I would love to say it improves.  It doesn’t.  Again its mainly just nasty sweet alcohol notes. I’d love to dissect each component in this blend.  It’s impossible though.  There is nothing really to describe other than nasty cheap alcohol.

From what I gather Saint James are no longer producing this.

A very wise decision.

1 star





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