Berry's Own Selection - Barbados 11 Year Old Rum

Berry's Barbados 11YO-RG1

Product of:  Distilled on Barbados, bottled in England
Aged:  11 years
Price: $89.99 (SRP)
Alcohol: 46% ABV 
Sugar:  0g/L
Context: Premium Aged Rum
RG Rating:  9.5

Tasting Notes 
Extremely Smooth.  Beautiful bronze-amber color, just as it should possess after resting in oak barrels for 11 years, all the while feeling the Caribbean heat and Atlantic breezes wafting though the aging warehouse in St. Philip parish, Barbados.  The rum appears more poised than polished, with honest numerous lazy legs slowly drooling down the side of the tasting glass, then followed by thinner and even lazier legs.  Ahh, all that drooling makes detecting the wondrous aromas easier and more  immediately pleasant.

I know this will sound simplistic, but Berry’s Barbados smells just like rum should, with enough alcohol to keep things real; charred old oak, caramel, vanilla, tobacco, some phenolic, butter, scents of mango, fig, nutmeg.  Take a sip and enjoy your first taste of creamy mouth-coating milk chocolate and caramel, classic Bajan and not sweet, just perfectly balanced.  This is the kind of medium-heavy bodied rum we’ve come to expect and love from Foursquare, with layers of sincere flavor  and a finish that doesn’t vary from the first sip, just slowly fades to a memory.

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Anecdotes 
Berry’s Barbados 11 year old rum is distilled at the Foursquare Distillery in St. Phillips parish at the south end of the island.  Foursquae's impressive pot still is pictured at right.  It is a blend of several batches of molasses-based rum, not a single vintage.  Some of the rum was distilled   in Foursquare’s Pot still and some in their Vacuum Column still.  

Foursquare is well known for the fine line of premium aged rums within the RL Seale’s and Doorly’s brands, and for their Olde Brigand rum locally.  The distillery is one of Barbados most prolific, having created rums for several other brands, most notably St. Nicholas Abbey and Plantation, as well as10 Cane and Tommy Bahama.  

The heart and soul that Master Distiller Richard Seale puts into every rum he produces is made obvious by sampling his rums, and/or visiting his Foursquare Distillery.  I can only imagine the fun Berry’s rum scouts had during their visits to Barbados, sampling precious rums straight from the aging barrels and trying to decide which rums to bottle as their own.  They did just fine, in any case.

Opinion
Berry’s Barbados 11 Year Old is nearly perfect.  I’ll clue my fellow Americans into a sad reality:  we don’t receive the best of Barbados.  Perfect rums are made at the Foursquare Distillery, such as their 1998 Vintage and the rums aged and released by St. Nicholas Abbey. Sorry, not sold in the USA.  So thank Berry’s for bringing their Barbados 11 Year Old to the ‘States – it’s a must-have.

Reviewed: January 2014 at the Rum Gallery, USA.


© Dave Russell 2017