Unconventional Distillery Opus

Unconventional Distillery Opus Rum Review by the fat rum pirateUnconventional Distillery Opus. This rum like the distillery behind it are fairly new. It is also a British brand from the North of England. So don’t worry if you haven’t heard of them as yet. That’s part of the point of my reviews I guess…build awareness of new rums etc. Yeah we’ll run with that.

This is my first review of 2021. I took a little break to ease myself back into work and now sadly “Lockdown 3”. With this in mind and with “Rum” sales booming in the UK (mostly Spiced/Flavoured garbage like Dead Man’s Finger’s sadly), I thought I would start the year with a rum from the UK.

Unconventional Distillery Opus first came to my attention when I noticed it had won a gong at the Craft Distilling Expo Rum Awards for Unaged Rum of the Year 2020. Following this the brand owner asked if he could post in The UK Rum Club (a Facebook group I run with Steve James of Rum Diaries Blog) about Unconventional Distillery.

Now Unconventional Distillery go under the tagline of “Aut viam inveniam aut faciam”. Which (so I am told) roughly translates to “If there is no way we will find our own”. As a result of this mantra some of their products such as a Pink Rum and a 0% “Rum” were not met with universal praise within the group.

However, as you can see from the Unconventional Distillery’s website. They are certainly no shrinking violets and are certainly not lacking in confidence. So the owner Sam Owen more than held his own in discussions, in a measured professional manner.

Now I can’t say all their products would be to my liking. I’ll be honest I did snigger a little at some of the website. For me it’s a little OTT at times but hey I’m not one of the “pioneers, renegades, rockstars and chefs” involved in this venture. So fair play to them! Afterall I’m not even a real pirate.

Unconventional Distillery Opus is a White Overproof Rum produced on a 12 plate Reflux Column still – rather than a Pot Still. It is currently available in two bottle sizes 20cl and 70cl and you can buy it direct from their webstore. Unconventional Distillery Opus retails at £15 for a 20cl bottle and £32 for a 70cl.Unconventional Distillery Opus Rum Review by the fat rum pirate

Now bearing in mind this is a new company and the fact UK Tax on alcohol increases with ABV to launch a 70cl bottle of white unaged rum at £32 and bottle it at a whopping 63% ABV – is offering damn good value in the market. A lot of similar products are available at this price point from UK distillers but they tend to be around the 40-43% ABV.

So let’s all see what this “Northern” rum is like…..

In the glass like all unaged rum it is completely clear. No surprised there.

On the nose there is some light toffee and molasses. Overall though this is quite a clean spirit. I’m not sure to what % it is distilled to. The use of a column still will also produce lighter spirit as well.

It doesn’t smell particularly boozy and it certainly smells less boozy than it’s heady 63% ABV. This isn’t like Wray and Nephew where the pungent funk leaps out of the bottle the minute you open it.

As a sipper it shows more of its boozy credentials. It’s very spicy initially with notes of white pepper, toffee, molasses and a kick of chilli powder. A few more sips and you get accustomed to it. It’s a very clean spirit. It has a slightly “mineral” like note as well. It’s very nice a palate cleanser – like a lot of unaged cachaca can be. This however does still maintain it’s sUnconventional Distillery Opus Rum Review by the fat rum pirateweet toffee and molasses notes throughout.

It works nicely mixed – obviously it was tried and tested with cola and it made for a very smooth drink. Too easy I think.

There is quite a lot of very decent white rum out there in the UK. Unconventional Distillery Opus is worth adding to that list. As mentioned earlier it offers really good value. It’s perhaps a touch lighter than I might have preferred but its still a tasty drop.

This has been nicely put together and whilst I doubt I’ll be picking up their 0% “Rum” anytime soon I’d certainly be keen to try some of their other expressions. The smaller 20cl bottles will also make this a less expensive experiment.

I do wish more producers would do 20cl bottles they are ideal for reviewers.










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