A premium rum from Angostura (of Angostura Bitters fame) from the home Dwight Yorke. 1919 is the year this blend of rum was first casked. The rum is aged 8 years in (what else) ex Bourbon barrels. The bottle states that they believe it “will be the smoothest rum you have ever tasted with notes of oak, cocoa and vanilla”.
I got my testing bottle from my local Sainsburys who often stock it in their larger outlets. I’d been looking at the rum for some time but I always seemed to get tempted with a cheaper offering. With a whopping £3 off I finally took the plunge so I got this rum for £23.50. Online it seems to be around £28-30.
I didn’t get the cardboard sleeve (which seems to be present in pictures online), it’s something I can live without bearing in mind the £3 saving and the fact its still at least £5 cheaper than online. However, it was the bottle which had originally got my interest and the fact it was made by the “bitters people”. The bottle really is lovely for a rum under £30. It’s more a decanter than bottle. It has a high density wooden cork with a black painted topper, very luxurious for a rum at this price point. The cork gives a very satisfying pop and the clear labelling gives the rum a very appealing appearance. If this golden coloured rum from Trinidad and Tobago had been £23.50 and in say, a Cockspur bottle I think it would remain untried!
Reviews of this rum seem fairly positive and it definitely passed the looks test, which no matter how much you don’t want it to does influence certain purchases.
Looks are one thing but really its all about the taste. When poured in the glass the rum is almost straw coloured rather than the amber hue in the bottle. The nose of the 1919 is predominantly vanilla. There is a little “oak and smoke” and a very small scent of fruit. Perhaps a little banana but very subtle.
When sipped the rum is very smooth. It is quite light. There isn’t a hit of pungent pot still rum like a Jamaican rum. There isn’t the heavy rich fruits of a Demerara. It is similar in body to a Bajan style rum but without the fruity flavour profile. It’s more reminiscent of a Cuban style perhaps. I suppose Trinidadian rum’s need there own category. The rum does not give any fruit flavour at all when sipped. It is quite oaky, the vanilla is now pretty subtle. I have seen reviews commenting on a chocolate note to the rum. I can only assume that this is in bitterness of the finish. Very dark chocolate perhaps, there is some nuttiness to the finish as well.
The rum doesn’t stand up well when mixed. Cola just drowns it out. You are left with a very smooth cola drink with a little hint of oak but nothing really else coming through. The rum is really to subtle for mixing. To be fair to this rum, it isn’t intended as anything other than a sipping rum.
I have to say I have rums I much prefer. I enjoy a sweeter fruiter rum. As a rum to show someone that rum doesn’t have to be harsh this rum would be a good start. Due to the smoothness of the rum it is very easy to sip.
I’d be curious to try the 1824 Angostura as I would imagine further ageing of their rums really could make for a much more complex sipping rum.