Rum has been overshadowed by the brown spirits boom, but an onslaught of high-end, boutique labels is enlivening the category’s space in a big way. As with whiskies, aged expressions are spearheading the upscale climb, with some matured for up to 25 years. Here’s a selection of new rums that will hit shelves in the new year.
Plantation Extrême Guyana
Maison Ferrand has debuted two new expressions within its limited edition Plantation Extrême Rum collection. Plantation Guyana 1999 Extrême N°2 was distilled in the now-shuttered Uitvlugt Distillery in 1999. After distillation, the 59.7%-abv rum spent 15 years in ex-Bourbon casks prior to being transferred to France, where it spent an additional three years in ex-Cognac casks. Only 1,000 bottles of the new release are available.
Plantation Extrême Fiji
Meanwhile, Plantation Fiji 2001 Extrême N°2 was distilled in 2001 at the South Pacific Distillery. At 61.1% abv, the new entry was aged for almost 14 years in ex-Bourbon casks before being moved to France, where it matured in ex-Cognac casks for 2.5 more years. This new rum is also extremely limited, with only 500 bottles available. To learn more, visit Plantationrum.com.
Barcelo Imperial Onyx
The Barcelo rum brand, imported by Shaw-Ross International and distilled in the Dominican Republic, is expanding early next year with the addition of the Barcelo Imperial Onyx, retail priced at $40. It will be matured in more heavily charred ex-Bourbon casks than its lower-priced cousin, the lightly charred Imperial, which retails at $32. The new entry was filtered over Onyx stones prior to bottling. Distribution will start in five states in the first quarter, reaching 15 states by mid-year of 2018. For more information, visit Ronbarcelo.com.
Signature Series Don Q
Serrallés USA’s Don Q rum brand is extending in 2018 to include a Signature Series Don Q Double Aged Vermouth Cask Finish. The new expression was matured for five to eight years in American White Oak casks, then finished for about six weeks in 600-liter Mancino Vermouth Vecchio casks crafted from Italian oak. Distilled at 40% abv, Don Q Double Aged Vermouth Cask Finish will be available by February, priced at $50 a 750-ml. To learn more, visit Donq.com.
Atlantico Cognac Cask
Dominican rum brand Atlantico is expanding its range with two new finishes. The new Atlantico Cognac Cask rum, with a portion of its liquid solera-matured for as long as 25 years, spent a year in Cognac casks. It’s set to launch in the U.S. in March, retailing at $50 a 750-ml. There will be 300 six-bottle cases available. Visit Atlanticorum.com for additional information.
Atlantico Reserva Tempranillo
The new, rosé-colored Atlantico Reserva Tempranillo Cask will complement Atlantico’s Cognac Cask release. The second portfolio newcomer was finished for a year in Spanish Tempranillo casks, and will also retail at $50. It will hit shelves next summer, with 500 six-bottle cases allocated to the U.S. Atlanticorum.com has more.