A 100% European rum? Yes, it’s possible: on the Canary Islands where sugarcane is grown.
The Rum: Ron Aldea Caña Pura
Origin: Canary Islands (Spain)
Raw material: sugarcane juice
Distilled: double column copper still (Egrott, France)
The Nose: the initial aroma is rather alcoholic, camouflaging the more subtle aromas. As it should be for an Agricole style rum, the Aldea Caña Pura is vegetal and grassy with the sugarcane character being well present. I also have some red pepper combined with a muddy (or is it dusty?) touch. It goes a bit towards olives, but more earthy. I agree it’s a bit of a strange note in a rum but I really don’t mind; it gives the rum some character. There’s a very faint watery fruity aroma too.
The Taste: the first sip is again rather alcoholic and definitely not too sweet; even a bit dry. In this light bodied rum we taste this watery fruity notes again. Pears or water melon, with a bit of a zesty citrus side.
The Finish is rather short with a bit of a sweeter touch and again that watery fruity side. A subtle mineral touch stays on the pallet until the end.
Our score: **
The Rum: Atlantico Platino
Origin: Dominican Republic
Raw material: both molasses and sugarcane juice
Distilled: Column still
Maturation: 12 months American white oak + 6 months Tempranillo casks
The Nose starts a bit vegetal grassy with a slight herbal touch. I also have a bit of citrus and some winegums. Vanilla and caramel are well present and accompanied by the aroma of some freshly cut green wood. Apart from the vanilla the wood influence is non-existing. Tempranillo casks…really? Used for the 87th time maybe… .
The Taste: surprisingly sweet with loads of vanilla. There really is no correspondence between the nose and the taste, apart from that vanilla. The body is very light. And again… tempranillo? That surely must be a joke, right? Being a rather aromatic raisin variety, there is really no influence in either aroma or taste. None whatsoever!
The Finish is rather short. This isn’t a bad rum, there are no flaws or off-notes. But this is once again such a very boring rum. It lacks character, it lacks depth, it lacks body. Commercial? Maybe…but a rum WITH character can be commercial too!
Our Score : **
Yet another rum trying to surf on the name and fame of Dominican rums without adding any value.
Pott rum has a bit of a confusing history, it seems.
Pott was a rum distillery on Sint-Maarten, the Dutch Antilles. “The success of the island is due in large part to its duty-free status. Alcohol, for example, can be imported, blended, and sold without the usual red tape. In the 1980s, the aging Potts distillery, the last to operate on the island, closed because it was too small to compete with untaxed imports from other islands.” it says on the website of the Ministry of Rum.
So Pott was a Sint-Maarten rum, distilled on the island up untill the early 1980s. But Europeans, and especially Germans, still now Pott rum today as a German brand of rum (at 40 and at 54 abv). And what do we read on their site : that the Pott distillery was founded in 1848 in Flensburg – Germany. And there isn’t a confusion between two different brands of Pott, since the logo of the ‘German’ Pott is the same as that of the ‘Sint-Maarten’ Pott..
Now to confuse things even more, we also found info that “the typical Flensburger rum” is made today at the Pott distillery in…Sint-Maarten.
So to conclude :
- Pott was closed at Sint-Maarten in the 1980s.
- Pott was a German rum from Flensburg
- The German rum is made today (2017) in Sint-Maarten in a distillery that closed in the 1980s.
Very confusing indeed.
Now let’s try a Pott that we can be sure of that was made in Sint-Maarten : a Pott light Rum bottled around 1980.
The Rum: Pott Light Rum
Distilled and bottled: ca 1980
Nose: Light rum indeed! Very light and fresh with sweet fruits and a hint of mint in the nose. Soft floral tones and delicate sugarcane on the background. Very pleasant nose…but after a few minutes I have some cleaning products in the nose. Soapy. And no, it was not the glass.
Taste: Again very light, rather sweet and soft fruity notes. Rather consistent with the nose, but luckily no soap here. A bit of a weak rum though. Too weak to be very present when drinking it pure, but also to weak and delicate to use as a mixer. The taste isn’t bad at all, but lacks some character, some ‘oompf’ and some depth. A bit boring.
Finish: Haribo sweets with a touch of aniseed. A medium long finish (rather surprising for a weak rum) without any alcohol at all. Or without any evolution. Again: the finish isn’t bad, but boooooring monotone.
Our Score: **
The Rum: Mount Gay Special White
Distilled : n.i. – 1970s
Bottled: n.i. – 1970s
An old white rum from Barbados, bottled somewhere in the 1970s. So still a 750 ml bottle with screwcap; import for Germany by Maykamp.
Nose: Soft with subtle vegetal notes, some sweets with a herbal touch. Rather mineral, wet slate. Also a sweet fruity aroma that reminds me a bit of those maraschino cherries.
Taste: again rather soft and round. The alcohol is present and tingles the throat and tongue, but is in no way aggressive. A rather sweet taste with a hint of aniseed. Some peppermint gives it an extra fresh flavour. Also some green bananas on the background.
Finish: A rather longue finish that is medium sweet. The peppermint stays until the very end. Well balanced rum!
Our Score : ***