Still with LM&V [WLP], we finish with a Caroni pair. Much like what has happened with Karuizawa and Brora [WLP], we are seeing the last drops of a lost world, hence the liquid gold rush we’ve seen with ‘old & rare’ whisky and rum within the last decade and more. Pronounced with the emphasis on the ‘Car’, Car-oni’s prices have crept up in line with a dwindling supply yet incredibly, Velier generously continues to offer it as a free-pour at Rumfest year after year. It’s ironic then how many ‘rum fans’ walk past it, swayed by the sugary flavoured brand-hyped vodka-rum instead.
Let’s see what they’re missing out on.
Caroni 1996/2019 23yo Ob. ‘Tasting Gang’ Full proof blended rum 63.5% WF86
This 23yo vintage Caroni was made up of 22 casks, carefully selected by the ‘Tasting Gang’ who got together in Cognac to decide what would happen with the last remaining Caroni casks – around 170 of them [possibly], now all demijohn-ed. It’s planned that the remaining juice will appear in single estate blends or as small batch and single casks presentations in due course, not dissimilar to Karuizawa releases from Speciality in the 2010s.
- C: For around £300 [at time of writing], you’re getting a very tasty, intense fruity & woody rum. Sure it’s been ‘well cooked’ but that is the heavy Caroni style that many fans know and love. Buy a bottle and enjoy it.
Scores 87 points
I’m handed a cocktail. Angelo sure makes a mean daiquiri!
Caroni 1996/2019 23yo Ob. ‘The Last’ Full proof heavy Trinidad rum 61.9% RR10
Also coming in at 23 years of age and with a stated angels share of 85%, ‘The Last’ was made from 24 of the last remaining Caroni casks.
- N: It smells as you’d expect and want from a Caroni, namely a heavy, aged, sweet and rotting/mouldy vegetal number.
- T: Exquisite bitter-sweetness with a little fruity putty. Caroni’s [periodically recurring] underlying detergent-y note is fully tempered through its long travel.
- F: Moves between medicinal-like notes and a murky sugar paper-sweetness. You can see why they demijohn-ed these last remaining casks.
- C: A fabulous vatting. Score-wise, every bit as good as Yamazaki’s infamous  Sherry Cask bottling [WB].
Scores 89 points