|Ricks new tasting glass from Lexington Glass Works|
Randy McKinley has been my main contact at MSW and we have exchanged a few emails and he has enlightened me about their aging of rums. He is the head of Marketing and sales at MSW and filled me in a bit about how they approach rum.
The T. Rutter Rum we tasted yesterday is their backbone. It is a raw sugar rum, and that accounts for the wonderful sweet taste throughout. Even so - I detected a molasses late taste especially after watering it.
In effect what they have been doing is experimenting aging using different barrels. The sample I have was distilled 12/10/14. Barreling occurred 12/29/14. The tag information also states that the rum was placed into three barrels. 2, 30 gallon MSW Whiskey Honeycomb & 1 55 gallon Four Roses Whiskey barrel. So I am tasting Batch 2 and it looks like barrel number (overall) 118. Let's get to tasting!!!
First, we sniff: Often with whiskey barrel aged rums, the bouquet is overwhelmingly whiskey. Considering there are two whiskeys involved, I would not have been surprised if that was even more pronounced. Got to say -- the aromas were quite balanced! Very subtle whiskey with a sweet overtone. I would say, if the MSW Whiskey Honeycomb does have honey with it - perhaps that is added to the sugar-sweet that is this rum's signature. I also got the butterscotch richness and I swear a touch of brown sugar.
Let's taste; First, neat. The barrel is apparent at first sip, but lovingly so. Wood is there and just playing a nice accompaniment. the Whiskey and the wood are not overpowering, but I would call them enriching.
Once I add water the richness smooths out. This is a nice, pleasant sipping rum that will please the persons who like to experience a soothing, flavor that can be enjoyed
one light sip at a time. Ice, as with their white, T. Rutter, intensifies the flavors and brings out a deeper aroma. I see this as a great mixer for drinks that you'd want a robust flavored rum to join in with the ingredients. I imagine a Cubra Libre, with this rum component, being addicting.
Manatawney Still Works has a very good web page. I invite you to read the Journals that are offered to get insight into their passions, their spirits and the fun! They also have a Facebook page that will keep you up to date. Hopefully too we should see them on our page: American Made Rum.
So -- we have thoroughly enjoyed the rums we have tasted. Looking forward to more great new ones to come!! One day soon I hope to visit Pennsylvania and maybe stop by to see everyone at Manatawney Still Works.... Until then, I am...