CARONI GUYANA 23 ans 1996 Tasting Gang 63,5%
Rhum De Melasse, British Guiana, 70cl, Ref: 56484
Composed of “light” and “heavy” rums, this version selected in Cognac on 12 April 2019 by 23 Caroni experts is a blend of 22 casks. It was aged until 2008 on the archipelago of Trinidad and Tobago, before continuing its maturation in Guyana between 2008 and 2019. During these 23 years, the angel’s share reached 85%. Finding perfect balance between its light and heavy rums, this Caroni reveals a palette of flavours and aromas rich in fruity, floral nuances, as well as the very unique and instantly recognizable style typical of this iconic rum.
the complex initial nose wavers between orange zest, diesel, dried fig and exotic fruit (mango, persimmon). Allowed to breathe, cane sugar and molasses spread across the palate before more medicinal notes appear (camphor). The concentrated attack is herbaceous (straw, bulrush) and mineral (hydrocarbon). The mouthfeel on the mid-palate is incredibly delicate. The lightly tannic finish is deliciously rich (rum baba), spicy (clove) and characterized by Caroni’s iconic notes of hydrocarbon.
An LMDW exclusive
- Appearance : burnished gold with copper tinges.
- Nose : rich, complex. From orange zest to diesel, dried fig to cashew nut, heady florals (lily, tuberose) to exotic fruits (mango, guava, persimmon) and notes of tarmac and flambéed banana, the initial nose boasts incredible depth. Allowed to breathe, cane sugar, molasses and maple syrup spread across the aromatic palette. From this point on, the medicinal character (camphor, iodine tincture) becomes continually more powerful.
- Palate : unctuous and concentrated. The very beautifully vegetal (sugar cane, straw, bulrush) attack faithfully reproduces the hydrocarbon notes for which Caroni is so renowned. The very aromatic (gladiolus, geranium) mid-palate is incredibly delicate. Wild peach, lime blossom honey, fresh fig and juicy oranges bring the mouthfeel lots of freshness. Dark chocolate and the flavours of a slightly sweet Havana cigar then arrive in a grande finale.
- Overall : long, softly tannic. The very rich (rum baba, sweet chestnut cake) start of the finish creates a united front with the end of the palate. Characterized by notes of hydrocarbon (sleet, petrol), with time it becomes increasingly spicy (cinnamon, clove, nutmeg). Staying close to the sugar cane, the retro-nasal olfaction is earthy and saline. Revealing notes of apricot, the empty glass also brings hot tar and smoked meat.
- The brand
Beginning production in 1918, Caroni was the state distillery of Trinidad. It had access to its own sugar refinery that guaranteed its supply of local cane sugar. Equipped with both column stills and double distillation pot stills, until 2002 it produced “heavy rums” with an individual and noteworthy style. Only rarely producing bottlings under its own label, for a long time the distillery remained known only to a handful of connoisseurs, which gave it a mythical status further enhanced by its closure in 2002 by the Trinidad government. In 2004, the discovery of hundreds of bottles stored away in a bonded warehouse in Trinidad led to the joint purchase of the entire Caroni stock by Velier and La Maison du Whisky and to the bottling of various rare years which were then sold in limited editions and quickly gained cult status. This veritable and unique treasure lead to the production of a 12 year old Caroni. Despite its already respectable age, this completely new and historic bottling will be the last version of Caroni to be bottled so young.
The Velier company was founded by the Chaix family in 1947. From 1953 to 1983, this small traditional company, located in the port of Gênes, specialised in the importation and distribution of wines, champagnes and spirits. In 1983, then aged 25, Luca Gargano acquired shares in Velier. Under his influence the company began specialising in the importation of exceptional spirits to be supplied to the most prestigious establishments in Italy. In the early 1990s, Luca Gargano heard rumours of a mythical, quasi-legendary stock of St James Rum that had supposedly been distilled at the end of the 19th century. Eventually he discovered proof that this stock, distilled in 1885 and bottled in 1952, did indeed exist. And in 1991, following lengthy discussions, Luca finally managed to acquire the entirety of this stock, which he then released on the Italian market. These selections of rums have since multiplied and led to the birth of exceptional ranges.
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