Review #843 – Smuggler’s Notch Bourbon Barrel Aged Rum

Review #843 | /r/Rum Review #33 – Smuggler’s Notch Bourbon Barrel Aged Rum

The Schtick: This was a blind dram and I reviewed it with friends live on the Whiskey Network Discord server, then got the reveal in order to fill in relevant details here.

Our “premium single-barrel extra aged amber rum offers an intriguing flavor profile. Aged for 3 years in charred white oak barrels, the process is finished off with double-aging in 4 year-old whiskey barrels to infuse complex whiskey overtones. Each barrel offers a subtly distinct flavor profile, a rum connoisseur’s delight!

Our rum is stored in a heated warehouse (think warm climate) unlike whiskey, which requires cooler settings for aging. The heat causes some reactions to speed up.” – Smuggler’s Notch Webpage


Distiller: Smuggler’s Notch Distillery (Vermont, USA)

Bottler: Smuggler’s Notch Distillery (Vermont, USA)

ABV: 45% ABV

Age: NAS


Nose: Light, incredibly effervescent. Pears, apples, cream, lemon tart.

Taste: Light here, also. Apples, pears, honey, light baked bread. No real heat, but the proof doesn’t appear that high, either. Faint pepper, no oak.

Finish: Short, light, fruity, effervescent. Crisp apples, almost like a buttery chardonnay. No heat at all.

Overall + Guess: This was nice, but very light, and almost fragile. The thin palate and lack of heat there and in the finish leads me to believe this is on the lower end of the ABV spectrum, I’ll guess 43% – 46% ABV. I’m guessing this is a younger, bourbon matured scotch. Little to no sherry influence. If I had to guess, I would put this as a Scapa, Glen Elgin, or Ben Nevis, 10-12 years of age. It really could be just about any young spey, but I think the apples, pears, baked bread and lack of oak may be a string contender for one of those three. Could be a super light brandy, but I don’t think so.

Reveal: Smuggler’s Notch Bourbon Barrel Rum from Vermont. Wow, this was super interesting. They did pretty well with it, haven’t seen that breadiness in a lot of rums, if any before. Craft is definitely doing some interesting things here, and the distinct lack of musty brown sugar, molasses, and tropical fruits was fascinating.

Thanks for reading!

Rank: 5


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