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  • 95

1996 Caroni Extra Strong 21 Year Old Cask Strength Rum (700ml)

TRINIDAD
$350. 00 Bottle
$4200.00 Dozen
ABV: 57.18%
While the Caribbean has a long history of rum, a significant part of this history has been irretrievably lost. Trinidad once boasted more than 50 distilleries. The number dwindled to eight by the 1950s and now only Angostura remains. The decline was mostly due to the demise of the local sugar industry (Trinidad now imports molasses for rum production).
This increasingly rare bottling represents a small part of that era.

The Caroni Estate Distillery (est. 1918), closed in 2003 and is now sadly, demolished. It was built on the site of an old sugar factory and for a period supplied rums to the British Navy. At the time, there were some eight to ten other sugar factories operating, each producing different types (and qualities) of rums, bought up by merchants and sold to rum shops all over the island.

Caroni gradually increased the quality of its distilling process, moving on from its original cast iron still to a wooden coffey still, until 1945 when they acquired a copper still which was followed by a single column in 1957 and then a four column Gerb Herman still in 1980. Rums from the estate gained a reputation for being particularly flavoursome.

After the 2003 closure, some Caroni casks made their way back to the U.K. We're pleased to be able to offer an allocation of what is unquestionably a true collector's and connoisseur's delight. Once these are gone, they're gone forever. It's also one of the oldest Caroni's to hit our shelves, bottled at natural strength.

Tasting note: Polished copper. Wafts of alcohol give way to profound aromas of vanilla bean, raw sugar, molasses and sticky date. The massive attack manages to balance all of the above in a slow-motion cascade, the sugars weaving in and out of the encroaching oak in a sustained, bittersweet sensation. Another side of Caroni, demonstrating just how well its rums can age. 57.18% Alc./Vol.