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Rum Reviews

Clement Rare Cask Collection for the 10th Anniversary of Romhatten.dk (11 years)



Background: a pure canne bleue distillate, tropically aged in an ex-bourbon cask for 11 years and 7 months. I have not tried any rum from Clement’s unaged Canne Bleue line, but what little I heard of the varietal’s penchant for being distilled funky was enough to get me to bid for this bottle on Rum Auctioneer. And as you will soon find out, it does not disappoint.

Nose: syrupy and sticky, almost resinous in texture; chewing mints; treacle; sandalwood; butter cake; toffee; the sweetness is balanced by some fresh and fruity notes; sugarcane juice; grape bubblegum; crystallised pineapple; a concoction of osmanthus and assam tea, and passionfruit and pink guava concentrate; grapefruit juice; dried orange peel; the undertones are much funkier; freshly cut branches and leaves; grass jelly; liquorice; sarsaparilla drink; tobacco; exhaust fumes mixed with vapourised coolant; freshly varnished wood; nail polish remover; the base notes are deep and earthy, comprising petrol, WD-40, tar, wet copper, rubber, Chinese tonic soup -- commonly brewed with black Silkie chicken -- and ground peanuts and almonds.

Palate: thick and rich mouthfeel, again like a syrup; starts out cognac-esque; mixed berries juice; dried figs and prunes; rum-soaked raisins; blackforest cake; it then gets sweeter and more desserty; maple syrup; molasses; Fox’s Glacier Mints; Werther’s Original; salted caramel; butter cake; liquorice; grass jelly in soy milk; the mid-palate takes a turn towards the savoury and briny; Yuki no Yado senbei; sweet-savoury fried dough, such as the locally popular butterfly fritter; pan-seared foie gras drizzled with honey; Don Bocarte canned tuna in olive oil; the back-palate is akin to that of a tropically-aged Clarendon; vanilla cream; camphor; eucalyptus; iodine.

Finish: long; starts out earthy and industrial; hot tar; wood smoke; more tuna and foie gras, both pan-seared, then smoked; salmiak liquorice; toffee; hazelnut praline; roasted coffee beans, fried with butter; shortbread biscuit; whipped cream; more yellow cake batter, maybe in the form of marble cake now; the entire finish is supported by a steely spine of chewing mints -- peppermint Mentos was my immediate association; cream, wood, liquorice, kelp, olives, wet copper and sugarcane juice make up the aftertaste.

Conclusion: this defies my expectations of a rhum agricole, and to think it comes from Clement, no less! There is a substantial component to it that is dirty, earthy and tarry, bringing to mind some estery Jamaican and -- that’s right -- Caroni distillates. The special thing is, said component is coated in hard mint candy and then doused in sweet, fruity syrup. Complex, balanced, well-structured, and most importantly, unique, this great rum opened my eyes to the range of Clement, and indeed, of agricoles in general.

Score (assuming a normal distribution with mean 50): 91/100


Image Courtesy of u/zoorado