A scotch whisky distiller, when asked recently if he made any blends, was gloriously sniffy and dismissive of blended whisky. It would have been interesting to see and hear what he would have made of the Johnnie Walker Directors Blends, which I got to taste last Thursday (November 28) in London.
Available in the UK this September, Plantation 3 Stars is likely to cost around $24.99 per litre. It has an abv of 41.2%.
The blend comprises a 3-year old Trinidad rum, carbon filtered to maintain its transparency and remove tannins but preserve aromatics, un-aged rums from Barbados and a 12-year old from Jamaica.
The rums are transported to Cognac, France, where they are finished in ex-Cognac oak barrels.
Cognac Ferrand owner Alexandre Gabriel said: “Most white rums on the market today are either too neutral and too vodka-like or too rough and rustic. We wanted a rum that shows character, elegance, complexity and a great finish – the ideal rum for cocktails.
“This is the beauty of blending. You can capture the best of each - Trinidad brings elegance and refinement, Barbados brings character and aromatics with fruit notes without being too heavy and Jamaican brings the funk, the touch that makes it a complete product.”
“We are a small artisanal spirit producer so from a marketing perspective this product makes no sense. But on the other hand, we felt that we had it in us to create a hell of a white rum and could not resist the creative urge.”
3 Stars joins the Plantation group of rums that include: Original Dark Overproof 73% from Trinidad ($29.99/75cl), Grand Reserve 5 Year Old from Barbados ($19.99/750ml), 20th Anniversary from Barbados ($39.99/750ml, and a range of vintage expressions.
Tasting notes for 3 Stars, according to Cognac Ferrand, are as follows:
"Keenly vibrant and well-balanced, Plantation 3 Stars displays the finesse and style of Trinidad and Barbados well integrated with the character and fuller flavours of Jamaica. On the nose it has delicate notes of tropical fruits intertwined with brown sugar and ripe banana. On the palate it displays subtle spices and floral notes with a finish of sugar cane and vanilla."