For this special Spirits Edition of Tasting Notes, we settle into our Christmas break by getting into a pour of Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum from Saint Lucia Distillers (Saint Lucia, West Indies).
First blended in 1999 with the intention to “create a fine quality rum that can represent the iconic style of St. Lucian rum,” Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum “starts with selected aged rums of both Coffey column stills and copper pot stills.” These selected rums are “aged separately by batch and type of still in ex-Bourbon barrels, then blended and rested in oak vats for an additional six months.” Clocking in at 40% ABV/80 PROOF, the finished Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum comes together to “become the flagship St. Lucian rum known for its harmonious well-rounded finesse and style with tremendous character for cocktails and sipping experiences.”
Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum is available in 750ml bottles (suggested retail price $27.99 each) at select liquor retailers located throughout the U.S. If you would like to order a bottle directly, you can do so by visiting Spiribam’s website (click here).
Alrighty . . . now that we have covered the story behind the rum, what do you say we crack open this bottle and make merry with some Tasting Notes?
Tasting Notes for Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum from Saint Lucia Distillers
Appearance: Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum is pristine in clarity and presents itself as a caramel-tinged, dark amber in color. When held to direct light, deep golden yellows push through as the amber tones brighten. When swirled about, the liquid coats the glass with a wide slick that releases some long, slow-moving legs.
Aroma: The aromatics open with caramelized banana, raisins and dark fruit. A spicy, woodsy, oaken quality then develops alongside a good amount of sweet vanilla. Notes of honey and tobacco then turn up to round out the profile.
Taste: Rich, boozy tones of caramel and molasses are the first flavors to hit the tongue. The barrel character then takes over, producing Bourbon-like levels of vanilla, oak and coconut. Raisin and dried apricot offer a touch of fruity sweetness before the sip closes with a complex mix of tobacco, leather, clove spice, chocolate and floral notes.
Mouthfeel: Slick and slightly syrupy in texture, this rum coats the palate gently and pleasantly lingers before slowly evaporating into nothingness. Sweet on the palate at first, it eventually balances out nicely thanks to the earthy tobacco and floral notes. The 40% ABV is actually pretty tame, producing a wonderfully smooth sip that offers just a touch of warmth in the belly. The aftertaste is all vanilla and oak.
Final Thoughts: All in all, Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum is incredibly solid and smooth for the price point. Thanks to its big flavors and lovely aromatics, it boasts more than enough complexity – especially when you consider the Bourbon-like notes it picks up off the barrels – so that it can easily be enjoyed neat or on the rocks. At the same time, its reasonable price tag makes it so you do not feel guilty about using this wonderfully balanced and well-rounded rum as an ingredient in your favorite rum-based cocktails/mixed drinks. This level of versatility makes Chairman’s Reserve Original Rum a fantastic go-to option to keep on-hand in your home bar. Be sure to keep an eye out for it the next time you find yourself wandering the aisles at your favorite retailer of fine liquors. Prost!