Prichard’s Fine Rum
If you’re following along, this is the second spirit in my October Pairing Series. Today I’m reviewing Prichard’s Fine Rum. I picked this bottle up at the same time I bought the Double Barrel Bourbon, this bottle of rum is also signed by Mr. Philip Prichard himself. I got to sample this rum at the tasting before I bought it, and I knew I just had to have it.
Just a little back story on this Prichard’s Fine Rum, from the Prichard’s website:
We use the finest water in Tennessee and premium table grade molasses to create our rum which is then aged three to five years in hand-made charred white oak casks until it acquires the barrel notes of the finest spirits.
Now, if that sounds like it is aged as a bourbon, well, you’re right. 3-5 years isn’t that long, but it it does help mellow the spirit out and pick up some subtle flavors along the way. Lets hop into the review and if that aging process gives it any bourbon qualities!
The interesting thing about Prichard’s Fine Rum is that you might see it in two different bottles. If you search online, you will see the old school bottle that it used to come in. The bottle I bought is the newer packaging, and it’s similar to the rest of their line.
The bottle is very tall, and has an especially long neck. It has the trademark Prichard’s gold ribbon on the front that acts as a freshness seal. The ribbon is held down with a beautiful gold sticker that has the Prichard’s logo on it. The logo is some sort of crest with a horse in the middle of it. It looks classy and charming.
Other than that the bottle is fairly simple, and elegant.
I’ve been a fan of rums for a long time. I typically drink dark rums mixed with cola or in other mixed cocktails. Very rarely do I get a nice sipping rum. I know that they are typically sweeter and smoother than bourbons, so I was really excited to try this Prichard’s Fine Rum with a cigar. First, I’ve gotta try it neat, to really pick out the flavors and see what’s going on inside.
I’ve been experimenting with how I nose the glass that contains my spirits. For this review I tried swirling it around in the glass similar to what you see wine sommeliers do. This opened up some really great aromas. The first thing I notice is that it smells a hell of a lot like bourbon! Now call me crazy (not call me maybe), but I’d say this has a lot to do with the fact that it is aged in charred white oak barrels just like bourbon. I picked up notes of vanilla and molasses. A couple of times, I did a quick ‘fly over’ sniff and picked up a lot more sweetness, it was very similar to caramel. However, I think if you handed this to most bourbon enthusiasts, they would assume it’s bourbon until they drank it. I know I would…
So this Prichard’s Fine Rum smells like bourbon, but it definitely doesn’t taste like bourbon. There are some notes that might be confusing, but once this hits your tongue you know it’s a rum. The sweetness that comes off of it is unmistakeable. I can definitely pick up the molasses, and strong notes of caramel. The sweetness is excellent, it’s not so sweet where it makes you feel like you need to go get a cavity filled though. The aging in the oak barrels brings out some more of the oaky flavor and vanilla, but it’s not as apparent on the palate as it was on the nose.
This rum finishes very nice. It’s a somewhat quick dry finish. The only way I can describe it is that it sets on your tongue for maybe 2 seconds and then disappears and then you’re left with this dryness in your mouth. So what did I do next? I took another drink of course. I love this finish, even though I would like it to stay around on my tongue a little longer before being whisked away.
Reviewed on Ice
Once I got this Prichard’s Fine Rum on ice, things didn’t change too much. I feel like it didn’t open up much more than when it was neat. I let the ice sit in the glass for a few minutes to chill it, and then I tossed the iceball. I didn’t want it to cut the rum too much, and water it down.
Once I tossed the iceball, I let the rum open up some. I gave it a good nosing again, and I picked up strong characteristics of bourbon. The vanilla, the oak, and overall sweetness. The molasses and sugars were a bit stronger once it was chilled. General overall sweetness was seeping out of the glass.
The flavors I picked up were very similar to when I tried it neat. Again, the ice opened this rum up a little and more of the sweetness comes out. It cuts down on the alcohol burn and weaves its way into a nice sweet sipping cocktail. I can still pick up the hints of vanilla and oak, just like in bourbon.
Well I thought the finish was quick when this Prichard’s Fine Rum was neat. It finishes even faster when it’s been chilled. The flavors barely spend any time on your tongue before they’re gone. I made sure to let the rum sit on my tongue for a while before swallowing to really soak in the flavors. I still get the dryness afterwards which is fine, but it leaves you wanting another drink. So I obliged my taste buds.
All in all, I was impressed with Prichard’s Fine Rum. It was very tasty. However, I feel like it lacked some complexity. I really focused on trying to pick out some flavors and notes and I kept running into the fact that it smelled like bourbon. This was confusing for my palate. I did enjoy it though, I think it’s a great sipping rum. Especially for bourbon enthusiasts this could be a great segue into the world of fine rums!
Prichard’s Fine Rum: 8/10