Plantation Guyana 1999 Rum
Review: Plantation Guyana 1999 Rum 87.5/100
a review by Chip Dykstra (Aka Arctic Wolf)
Posted on March 29, 2012
The Plantation Guyana 1999 Rum is a pot distilled, Demerara rum which is produced from molasses using an extra long fermentation period prior to distillation. The rum is first aged in Guyana in used bourbon barrels after which it is transported from Jamaica to France by Cognac Ferrand to be finished in their own warehouses and of course their own Cognac Casks.
Cognac Ferrand has long had a special relationship with a variety of Caribbean rum producers which is based upon the rum producer’s need for quality oak casks to age their rum. Based upon this relationship, Cognac Ferrand is able to acquire certain old and unique batches of rum from various Caribbean sources, which they bring back to France and finish in their own warehouses and of course their own Cognac Casks. This Demerara Rum was one such unique batch of rum acquired by Cognac Ferrand. It was bottled at 42 % alcohol by volume as part of Cognac Ferrand’s growing line-up of Plantation Rum.
I was given eight sample bottles last May, each 200 ml in size, which represent a good portion of the Plantation Rum line-up. The Plantation Jamaica 2000 is the eighth and last of these small sample bottles which I have chosen to review here on my website.
In the Bottle 4.5/5
As I have stated in my previous reviews for the Cognac Ferrand, Plantation Rums; all of the Plantation Rums arrive in a highly attractive clear glass bottle with a simple uncluttered label. The Plantation Guyana Rum has a small map of Guyana on the label identifying the origin of the original rum in the bottle. The bottle closure is a high density cork which is sure to give the consumer that nice satisfying pop when it is first opened.
In the Glass 8.5/10
I poured out a small sample of the Plantation Guyana into a glencairn glass. It is a bright golden/amber coloured spirit which, after a quick tilt and a slow swirl, laid a nice oily sheen on the inside of the glass. After a moment or two of delay, long slender legs ran back down into the rum.
The initial nose from the glass is full of oak tannins which have been tainted with a woody spiciness, rich toffee, and orange peel. I smell light baking, an almond nuttiness, and a firm vanilla. I like the nose, it is spicy, and full of character.
As I let the glass breathe, the wood spices deepen. Marzipan and marmalade rise into the air accented with citrus zest and lush brown sugar aromas. A light, but firm grape-like fruitiness steadily evolves in the glass as well which is not surprising considering that the rum was finished in cognac casks before it was bottled.
In the Mouth 52.5/60
This is a little warm and spicy in the initial mouth feel. The rum has a crisp flavour with tannins that pucker the mouth and wood spices that carry some heat as they disguise themselves as spicy orange zest. Vanilla and a butterscotch complement the spiciness and help serve to soften the rum. There are firm caramel flavours, some light baking spices, and a touch of almond which gives the rum character.
I find that the rum is very consistent from the nose to the palate. Marzipan and marmalade flavours develop in the glass as it sits, and weaving through everything is a fruity wine-like sweetness which seems to build up in the glass as it decants. I am enjoying this very much.
In the Throat 13/15
Woody spiciness warms the throat and palate, fruity flavours of orange peel and apricots linger, and the mild sweetness of butterscotch seems a faint echo of its former self in the exit. Because of the woody spiciness, I found that the rum was much nicer to sip with ice than to sip neat.
The Afterburn 9/10
The Plantation Guyana is an excellent rum. It has a spicy character with a good balance between the hot wood spices and the butterscotch/toffee sweetness. I found I could taste the cognac barrel enhancement much more firmly in this rum than other Cognac Ferrand Plantation Rums, and this was a good thing as the strong pot-still Guyanese character of the rum blended well with the firm Cognac aromas and flavours.
If you are interested in comparing more scores, here is a link to my other published Rum Reviews.
Throughout my sampling sessions I was reminded of the Pusser’s Navy Rums (which also have pot distilled Demerara Rum from Guyana in their blend). Like the Plantation Guyana, the Pusser’s Rums also have a strong wood-spice and orange peel flavour with the sweetness of butterscotch tempering the bite. A famous cocktail which uses Pusser’s rum is the Painkiller Cocktail, and I believe that this cocktail would also be extremely well-suited for the Plantation Guyana Rum. To be clear, because it is a trademarked cocktail, a Painkiller Cocktail must be made with Pusser’s Navy Rum. If the cocktail is constructed with another rum, it cannot be called a Painkiller, and it must be given another name.
That is why I have named my cocktail made with the Plantation Guyana Rum, Comfortably Numb.
2 oz Plantation Guyana 1999 Rum
4 oz Pineapple Juice
1 oz orange juice
1 ounce coconut cream
Cinnamon and Ground nutmeg
Mix in a tall glass filled with crushed ice
Sprinkle the top with Cinnamon and Nutmeg
Garnish with a cinnamon stick.
And remember, the aim is not to drink more, it is to drink better!
My Scores are out of 100 and you may (loosely) interpret them as follows:
0-25 A spirit with a rating this low would actually kill you.
26-49 Depending upon your fortitude you might actually survive this.
50 -59 You are safe to drink this…but you shouldn’t.
60-69 Substandard swill which you may offer to people you do not want to see again.
70-74 Now we have a fair mixing spirit. Accept this but make sure it is mixed into a cocktail.
75-79 You may begin to serve this to friends, again probably still cocktail territory.
80-84 We begin to enjoy this spirit neat or on the rocks. (I will still primarily mix cocktails.)
85-89 Excellent for sipping or for mixing!
90-94 Definitely a primary sipping spirit, in fact you may want to hoard this for yourself.
95-97.5 The Cream of the Crop
98+ I haven’t met this bottle yet…but I want to.
Very loosely we may put my scores into terms that you may be familiar with on a Gold, Silver, and Bronze medal scale as follows:
70 – 79.5 Bronze Medal (Recommended only as a mixer)
80 – 89.5 Silver Medal (Recommended for sipping and or a high quality mixer)
90 – 95 Gold Medal (Highly recommended for sipping and for sublime cocktails.)
95.5+ Platinum Award (Highest Recommendation)