Thursday, 11 June 2015

Review 48 - Boote Star Proprietor Reserve 20 y.o. Demerara

Photo copyright © H.Kristoffersen
Lovers of medicinal profiles, only. Please.
Now this is a real enigma.

The Boote Star Proprietor Reserve 20 year old Demerara. Or as it is also called on the label ”the RUM” (caps intended).

It is made by a company called Associated Distillers Group.

An extensive google session turned up diddly on both the company and the brand name.
Nothing. Zero. The only hits were the rum at hand, and its 10 year old younger brother.

On the back label of the rum there is a mentioning of the EU distributor Dellavalla Vigliano d’Asti from Italy.

A trip to the Dellavalle webpage reveals that they primarily operate in barrel aged Grappa matured in many different types of casks. I have sent an enquiry to Dellavalle for more information, but so far my request remains unanswered.

Fortunately the google session did reveal a lot of important information about the rum.
”the RUM”  is a 100% pot still rum from the Port Mourant still in Guyana.

It has been aged for 20 years, spending the first 5 years in Guyana before being moved to Scotland.

Maturation was done in bourbon casks, before it was finally finished in both sherry and port casks. I found no indication of how long it spent in each type of cask.

In the end it was bottled at 43% ABV.

I have found no information on the vintage of this rum or when it was bottled, but since I bought it in 2014 basic math suggests that it will have been distilled no later than 1994.

What caught my eye on the shelf in the store, was the tube.

A light coloured tube with what looks like star constellations or something like that. The Boote Star name incorporated in a black band at the top of the tube, and a copy of the rums label on the middle.

The label doesn’t say much except for the product name, and the fact that it is a 20 year old demerara rum.

On the back of the bottle is a short narrative about the rum in both Italian and English. No marketing egging on or glorification. Just a short, precise story about what is inside.
The bottle is a slender bar room bottle. Nothing fancy.

The label is an exact replication of the label on the protective tube.

On the back of the bottle we find a smaller label telling about the importer and distributor of the rum, as well as what I interpret as the route this rum took from birth to bottle; ”Guyana – UK – Italy – Holland”.

Preventing the rum from leaving the bottle too soon, we find a natural cork with a small wooden stopper.

The rum has a nice amber colour with an almost orange glow, and twirling it around leaves a thick ring, which produces long, fat and slow moving legs. It looks very oily.

First whiffs reveal a very intense and heavy medicinal profile.

Tonnes of sharp herbs, anise and heavily burned oak.
Wauw – a very violent nose from this one.

It ”evolves” into a combination of melted car tires and wet dog.
After that brine shows up and joins the freak show.

There is practically no sweetness or other typically ”pleasant” odours coming from this.

It feel very over aged.

Again, heavy on the medicine with tonnes of herbs and burned oak.

Wheelbarrows of pencil shavings are added to the concoction. But not pencil shavings in a constructive and interesting way as the Our Rum & Sprits Guyana 24 year old

Lots of anise all over the places, and some very heavy winey tannins.

Again: It feels overaged to a fault.

Either the starting distillate was not good enough or else the maturation simply destroyed it.
Or perhaps – just perhaps – this was all the intended result of some crazy warlocks work…

Rather short finish for a rum of this age and origin.

It vacuums after it self with a drying effect so intense, that I felt thirsty once it left my mouth.

It goes down very spicy and with a swan song of oak dying from incineration, and when that final note is struck, it is over.
Rating and final thoughts
A very interesting and refreshing sipper. Absolutely not one of the rums I will return to very often.

It is just too weird for that. Wet dog, car tires and pencil shavings? Seriously? Unfortunately, yes.

I am sure that this rum will be somebody's about most favourite drink in the world. I just don’t think that somebody will be your typical rummie. Perhaps a maltster will get a kick out of this one.

Summing up on everything, the only element I liked was the progression of the rum. Full frontal assault intro on the nose, followed up by a heavy verse on the palate, and then chorus, wailing guitar solo, and double chorus to finish. And 1, 2, 3, 4, boom; It’s outta here!

Even though it didn’t speak very much to my personal likings, it feels like a skillful creation. There doesn’t seem to have been added a lot of sugar to it to iron out the somewhat insanely heavy bumps in the road. I admire that. Most rum producers would most certainly just keep the sugar flowing until it was drinkable. Boote Star opted for another solution: Let us make it accessible to only a select few palates, who enjoys such insane potions of superpowers and magic.

Value for money is in the eye of the beholder here. It all depends wether this is your favourite remedy or not. If not, then it is a bit meh. If it is, then you will definitely want to secure a bottle or two of it.

I paid around €65 for it, and at that price you have a million other options. Go for it if you like medicinal profiles and a kick in the nads. Otherwise you might want to try a lot of other rums first.

Reaching the end, the effort and craziness alone demands a…

Rating: 60/100

None – as there really are no relevant links except for webshops.

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