1931 84th Anniversary Edition (Fifth Release - Pink Label) 

1931 82nd Anniversary Pink Bottle & Box-RG2-USE

Product of: St. Lucia 
Aged: blend of rums aged from 6-12 years 
Price:  $EC125 ($US47) purchased on St. Lucia
Alcohol: 46% 
: 0-5g/L (estimate)
Context: Premium Aged Rum 
RG Rating: 9

Tasting Notes 
The bouquet is amazingly complex, revealing much about this rum’s various lineage and aging vessels.  Most immediate is the unmistakeable scent of beautiful pot-distilled molasses rum ,enhanced by a higher note of the sugarcane juice distillate, and the sweet astringency of port contributed by the used barrels.

Aside from a brilliant, deep mahogany red color in the glass, the rum gives few visual clues.  Swirling initiates a slow-motion dance as beads of rum and legs take their own sweet time to develop over several minutes.

1931 82nd Anniversary Pink-RG1-USE

Sniff, and the aromas amplify the hints of the bouquet.  A potent, rich pot still molasses rum anchors the aromas, enhanced by  hints of wet leather, tobacco, paraffin, providing a substantial foundation for the less immediate notes.  There’s much pleasure to discern smelling this rum, but perhaps its most remarkable aspect is that the complex aromatic profile is simultaneously diverse and completely integrated.  Sniffing this pink label 1931 is like being in St. Lucia Distillers’ barrel aging warehouse; many intricate scents waft around in the heady atmosphere, wood breathing with rum.  That this blend has synergy is testimony to St. Lucia Distillers’ talented tasting panel.

Sipping is like listening to an orchestra where every musician is vying for attention.  Still, the individual flavors merge into one amazing symphonic performance.  On the palate, each constituent part is difficult to dissect, as the copper edge from the pot stills is softened by lighter, aged column still rums, with spiciness contributed by the oak barrels and earthiness by the agricole rhum in the blend, the port wine casks play like the clarinet section, ending soft with no harsh exit in the throat.  

•St. Lucia Distillers' beautiful John Dore and Vendome copper pot stills-RG-1

1931 Fifth Edition
Pink label was released in December 2015.  It is the fifth version of this incredible rum.  1931 Pink label commemorates 84 years of rum making at a distillery founded by Denis Barnard in the Mabouya Valley near the small fishing village of Dennery.  That distillery ceased operations in 1972 after merging with a distillery located in in the Roseau Valley, and together they formed St. Lucia Distillers, which continue operations in Roseau.  

1931 Black Label DNA Chart

As with the four previous annual editions of 1931 (80th, 81st, 82nd and 83rd Anniversary), this 84th anniversary edition is a unique blend.  It’s combination of aged rums is completely different from previous editions.  The final blend was agreed upon on December 18, 2015.  Handily, the bottle’s stopper and the color of the packaging changes with each edition, making it easy to identify subsequent annual releases.  

The fifth edition in the 1931 series blends spirits from all four of St. Lucia Distillers pot and column stills.  As I understand the blend, it consists of 35% Vendome Pot distillate aged 8-10 years; 18% from the John Dore II Pot still, aged 10-14 years; 20% from a blend rums off the John Dore I and Vendome pot stills; 18% Column aged for 6-7 years in Port casks; 9% Rum Agricole (John Dore I Pot still, aged 5-6 years in Bourbon casks).  Click on the chart image above to see the rum’s DNA, and take a photo tour of the distillery.

One sip and your whole impression of how complex rums can be is elevated: 1931 Fifth Edition 84th Anniversary sets a very high standard.  The Fifth Edition of 1931 is powerful, mature, full of scents and flavors, a velvet hammer of  spirit.  St. Lucia Distillers has many resources at their disposal, three smallish copper pot stills, a coffey still, Guyanese molasses and fresh pressed, estate grown sugarcane juice to ferment, and a tremendously dedicated team of distillers, blenders, cellar managers and tasters.  It’s to them we owe this fantastic rum.  

1931 82nd Anniversary Pink Mini LABEL-RG3-USE in review

Reviewed: Bottle 1343 from Batch 05, bottled on December 7, 2015 was evaluated during October 2016 while sailing around St. Lucia, and again in December at The Rum Gallery, USA.

© Dave Russell 2017