Review: Lost Spirits Navy Style Rum

History

Lost Spirits has been silent recently due to some issues with TCA in their distillery. Read more about what happened here. Since cleaning up and re-emerging with a redesigned distillery, Lost Spirits has been producing rum. It’s actually quite fitting since their new distillery was inspired by the Singapore scene in the Pirates of the Caribbean. Much of the new distillery was hand wrought by Bryan Davis and he fitted it with lights in order to show it off at night. Lost Spirits has chosen to make rum a bit contrary to industry standards. They are taking a single malt whisky type approach and are using high quality ingredients. Rum doesn’t have as many rules as single malt whisky and the industry has taken liberties in order to keep costs down in order to sell in mass. This Navy Style rum is made with baking grade molasses, evaporated cane sugar juice and water. There’s beauty in the simple high quality ingredients which is accompanied by high tech oak barrel aging techniques.

The association of rum with the Navy dates back to 1655 when the Royal British fleet captured the island of Jamaica. With the availability of domestically produced rum, the British changed their daily ration of liquor from French brandy to rum. At that time the practice of watering down rum wasn’t common and the sailors were given 150 proof rum (75% ABV). Sailors would occasionally mix the rum with gunpowder to test the proof of the alcohol (if the rum was diluted the gunpowder would not ignite after being soaked). Lost Spirits Navy Style Rum is a tribute to that era and they’ve bottled their spirit at 68% ABV.

Tasting Notes

Lost Spirits Navy Style RumNose: rich molasses, dark brown sugar, caramel, maple syrup, charred oak

Mouth: spicy, fiery, raw cane sugar, tannins, grapes, dark red cherries

Finish: very peppery, oak, tannins, purple grape skins, sweet raw honey

Verdict: I tried this neat first and it is a fiery burner! I actually enjoy it better with water. At 68% ABV the astringency from the alcohol masks the flavor but I’m glad Lost Spirits bottled it at cask strength so we can decide how much water to add or not add. The nose is full of rich molasses, dark brown sugar, caramel, maple syrup and it’s also slightly smoky. On the mouth this whisky is fiery with cane sugar, grapes and dark red cherries. There’s also strong evidence of tannins which creates a drying sensation on your tongue and the insides of your cheeks. The finish is pretty long and goes through several phases: it’s peppery up front followed by the drying quality from the tannins in the oak. Then there’s a hint of sourness that tastes like purple grape skins and finally after you think it’s over a sweet raw honey flavor surfaces which to your mouth like glue. The sweet lingering finish is quite nice indeed and follows you long after you’ve washed your glass and put the bottle away. It’s always fun to taste one of Bryan Davis’ spirit creations whether it be whisky or rum.

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