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From the home of Rhum Agricole and for the first time in Australia especially for the Rum Tribe! A brand new Caribbean rum from legendary Martinique producer Rhum J.M – The Terroir Volcanique.

Whilst we’ve jumped into sugar-cane juice derived rums (both aged and un-aged) previously – this month we have the absolute, real deal, l’original. The OG of Agricole, the cardinal crafters of cane juice, the recognized rulers of rhum – an aged Agricole Rhum from the home of Rhum Agricole – Rhum J.M

The Rhum J.M Terroir Volcanique is a column-distilled agricole. It is technically a ‘Vieux Agricole’ has been matured for at least 3 years in American oak with two distinct toasting regimes – intense, and extreme!

Agricole is a Rum (Rhum) variety that can only be produced in Martinique, Guadeloupe, French Guyana, Madiera and Reunion Island using the juice of sugar cane. ‘Agricole’ (or more specifically ‘Rhum Agricole’) is a term that is protected under an AOC (Appellation d’origine contrôlée) Much like the name ‘champagne’ can only be used to describe a certain type of sparkling wine from a specific area. 

This latest release from Rhum J.M celebrates their place of origin with an ode to the terroir of Mount Pelee – the temperamental volcano that overlooks the distillery and plantation.

A GOLD MEDAL winning Caribbean Rum for the 2020 price of $99

Our Tasting Notes:

Nose: Cookie dough, vanilla and brown sugar with tinned peaches and cream alongside a cane-train bin full of fresh cut cane billets.

Palate: Big and bold and certainly takes no prisoners. There’s a huge raw-sugar-sweet fruitiness to this that is kept right in check by the column-distilled crispness of this spirit. Big vanilla cream notes punching right through give testament to the American Oak barrels J.M are using.

Finish: It’s a lovely whirlpool of sweet mock-cream apple turnover, with nutmeg-ey spice, licorice and creaming soda with just the mildest of astringency in the finale.

This is so easy and moorish to drink straight up I can’t even imagine cutting it with a mixer. An ice-cube might be nice on a hot day- but no more. Of course it is your rhum – drink it how you like and damn the haters. Tell them to get their own!   

  • PRICE : $129

  • ABV : 43%

  • BOTTLE: 700ml

  • REGION: Martinique

  • No Added Sugar / No Added Colour

FROM RHUM J.M

“At Rhum J.M, we produce a rum that we want to be excellent. And our idea of excellence goes beyond that of taste. The J.M enthusiast must have the assurance that behind each of our bottles, passionate women and men have given meaning to excellence. By preserving their ecosystem, by promoting the raw material, by passing on the gestures and secrets of ancestral know-how, and by sharing the love and flavor of a unique product.” Emmanuel Bécheau Director of the Fonds-Préville Distillery

Column Distillation, Aged in American oak barrels having benefited from two types of toasting (intense & extreme), it draws its exceptional character from the environment of Montagne Pelée.

Terroir Volcanique, born from the perfect symbiosis between our unique terroir and the recognized know-how of the Fonds-Préville distillery, combines power and deliciousness to offer a unique tasting moment reflecting the many riches of Martinique.

Powerful and delicious. The perfect illustration of the Terroir and Know-How of Rhum J.M.

Dress Golden

Nose Notes of vanilla, honey and empyreumatic

Mouth Round with notes of tropical fruits and nutmeg Profile Complex | Powerful | Intense

ABOUT RHUM J.M

At the foot of Mount Pelee, a luxuriant nature thrives bordered by two rivers: Roches and Macouba. At the end of the 18th century, Antoine Leroux-Préville acquired a 164-hectare estate in this enchanting place to create a sugar mill. He gave it the name ‘Fonds-Préville’.

A century later, in 1845, the estate was bought by Jean-Marie Martin who gave a new impulse to the sugar factory by transforming it into a distillery. Shipped to Saint-Pierre, the rums with the initials ‘J.M’ were increasingly successful.

In 1912, the distillery was bought by the Crassous de Médeuil family. The two estates (Fonds-Préville and Bellevue) were then combined to form a single estate of 400 hectares. Major improvements are made, which contribute to give J.M. rum its reputation.

In 2002, the Martinique-based family business G.B.H bought the distillery. A few years later, the group undertook a complete modernization of the site to make it a model distillery, a jewel of intelligence and harmony with nature.

To say we’ve been looking forward to May’s ‘Rum of the Month’ for over a year now is a bit of an understatement! Our incredible Karu/Rum Tribe collaboration, code named ‘RUMBLEDORE!’ has finally been bottled and is ready for the ‘Tribe.

  • Matured in a Grand Marnier cask (we think this is a first!)
  • Filled with a single cask chosen by Karu and Rum Tribe
  • Bottled at a Batch Strength of 55%abv
  • First ever Karu Specialty Cask expression

Now Nick and Ally Ayres have been mates of the Rum Tribe since we kicked off back in 2020. In fact, they are OG members of the ‘Tribe and we’ve been thrilled to watch them win medal after medal, award after award for their spirits – and of course, especially their pure, single rum – Outcask!

Nick and Ally and I have been talking about ‘doing something really special’ for around 2 years now – waiting and watching for what that ‘special something’ would be. Then at the start of March last year I got a call from Karu saying they had found that ‘special something’ and I had better get down there quick smart! I arrived about 5 days later and was greeted by a beaming Nick and Ally (and Seb!) proudly showing off a still wet Grand Marnier cask. Ta-DA!

For those unaware – Grand Marnier is a blend of barrel-aged congac and orange liqueur and sugar. The mix is then further matured in oak casks – which is what Rumbledore is.

I am here to tell you; I have NEVER smelt such a lusciously irresistible cask in all my years of sticking my nose into small wooden holes. I just can’t describe how luscious this cask smelled. How sweet-and sticky-and-orangy-and-honey-y and utterly irresistible this thing was. I almost wanted to climb inside!

This was, indeed, the ‘special something’ we had been waiting for.

Now we had to name the cask. You see, Nick and Ally don’t just number their casks – they name them. Usually a topical rum pun. Barilyn Munroe, Edwood Woodward, Craig Stavid to name a few that feature in their barrel racks. After a while we decided on ‘Rumbledore’ and so it became!

And then came the onerous job of selecting what we’d put in it. It’s truly a dirty job to go through cask after cask with the distillers deciding what we’d like to fill it with. But we put our shoulders into the task, and by unanimous decision we all chose a single cask of Outcask rum named ‘Barol Caskin’ which was (at the time) just over 2 and a quarter year old.

So, in the sticky end-of-summer heat in the Devils Wilderness we filled Rumbledore with the contents of Barol Caskin and put it away to let time, and the Devil’s Wilderness climate do its thing. It ended up spending just a little over 12 months in the Grand Marnier cask to allow it to catch the very last legs of the 2024 summer heat before being partially decanted at 3.3yrs old total and bottled at a generous batch strength of 55% abv. (Cut with pure, Devils Wilderness rainwater).

This rum is a whole lot of firsts for Karu. It’s the premier of their new look labeling. It’s their very first ever ‘Specialty Cask’ expression. The first time they’ve used Outcask as a base for further experimentation – and you can take it to the bank that this won’t be the last of the ‘Specialty Cask’ Rums from Karu!

It won’t be the last time we see Rumbledore, either. They have refilled it with more Outcask rum (although not a single cask this time – rather the Outcask Core blend). Will we be seeing how it progresses and have it back sometime down the track? – you can bet your sweet booty on it!

Our ‘Members Extra’ for May is a MYSTERY – Our first Rum Tribe Mystery Rum and its only $99!

Our Tasting Notes:

Nose: Just so much deliciousness going on in this nose. There’s orange peel and honey, fairy floss and aniseed. Wafts of black tea leaves and doughnut dough drift through evening jasmine and fruit salad.

Palate: Wow – big and palate coating – with an initial kick of pepper that settles right down (the smallest ‘bloop’ of water eliminates it completely). Big fruity num-nums come bursting out with a delicious vanilla-creaminess that keeps those big 50%abv shoulders right in check.

Finish: Lovely, looooovely finish. It’s as chewy as bubble gum, rich and round, with big sultana notes, licorice allsorts and black coffee, as a sense of the citrus curls in and out.

Whilst this rum doesn’t SCREAM ‘Jaffas’ or ‘Terry’s Chocolate Orange’ – once you learn how it was finished, it all makes perfect sense! There’s just so many layers of flavour here. A cornucopia of fruit salad, candied peel, creamy-vanilla-caramels, aniseed-y and coffee notes – all the way through to floral aromas. This is BIG AUSSIE PURE SINGLE RUM with a European twist (… and a heart of absolute gold!)!

  • PRICE : $129

  • ABV : 55%

  • BOTTLE: 700ml

  • REGION: Australia (NSW)

  • No Added Sugar / No Added Colour

FROM KARU DISTILLERY

Hey Rum Tribers!

This is the first stop on our specialty cask release for Outcask Rum and, what a stop it is and I’m excited you’re here for it.

We took a single cask of our fully matured Outcask Rum and aged it for a further year in a Grand Marnier cask to see what differences it brings to our staple favourite.

What to expect is a richer aroma that you typically get from fortified or liqueur barrels with subtle sweet citrus of orange with candied spices. I have made a hefty dent in my bottle which is a good indicator we’re onto something good.”

Tasting Notes:

The Grand Marnier cask brings a new layer of sweetness to the aroma of Outcask Rum. Alongside subtle candied citrus, a hint of vanilla and warm spices whilst still keeping true to the notes of tropical fruit and creaminess from the original rum.

ABOUT KARU DISTILLERY

Launched in 2018 Karu Distillery by husband and wife team Nick and Ally, the focus has always been to create quality spirits that highlight the science and art of the distillation process.

Based in the Devils Wilderness NSW the range has grown to include Affinity a contemporary Australian gin, Lightning a navy strength gin, Morita a chipotle vodka and, of course, Outcask – their delicious golden rum. 

Karu is fast becoming one of Australia’s most awarded distilleries, in 2021 Lightning gin took out the Trophy for best contemporary gin at the International Wines & Spirits Competition.

Is this new Dead Reckoning Rum a 3 continent indy rum bottling or a science project? Well both! Follow along with us:

  • Rum sourced from 3 countries (Guyana, Vietnam, South Africa)
  • The Guyanese rum is a 3-still blend (is this a blend of a blend?)
  • The rums (aged between 3 and 5 years) then married into an ex-Makers Mark Bourbon cask
  • That Barrel was then rolled into the Adelaide sun every day for 18 months
  • Some crazy angel share/ABV magic happened
  • Bottled at a perfect 50.3%

We are thrilled to present the latest Dead Reckoning super juicy fruit, fruit salad of a “hot house rum” – The Dead Reckoning 3 Continent Blend!

Now we know that Dead Reckoning has been producing some absolutely sensational rums up in the Adelaide Hills. We’ve also seen that the peculiar micro-climate of the area causes the ABV of casks matured here to INCREASE over time. The incredibly low average humidity of the area means that water is drawn out of the casks at a faster rate than the alcohol. With over 12 degrees difference in average minimum and maximum temps in summer (over 8 degrees difference in winter), combined with the frequent temperature and barometric extreme events of Adelaide means any cask maturing here is really working!

But what if the natural bizarre climate and its effects got you wondering… what if MORE? What if you were to somehow turbo-charge this ‘Adelaide Dry Aging’ phenomenon?  What if you could somehow ramp-up an already insane maturation environment? 

What if… you put a barrel of rum on a wheeled rack and rolled it out into the Afternoon sunshine every day for… let’s say… 18months? (Yes this is what actually happened!) Not only would you use the heat of the direct sun to warm it (up to 52 degrees as it turned out!) but the twice-daily movement of the barrel would add agitation to the list of factors ‘boosting’ this ‘hands-on’ finishing treatment.

But first – you’d need a rum with shoulders big enough to take this… abuse? … torture?… SCIENCE! Justin had already Mhoba and Sampan in mind as he’d never heard of a blend from these countries (South Africa and Vietnam) before. However, he felt this pair needed a third with some real ‘oomph’ to give the blend some muscle. And a 3-still blend of Guyanese Rum at 68%abv was just the steroid this gym-junkie-to-be needed. In the end the ratio was 8% Guyana, 56% Mhoba and 36% Sampan. So this is a blend of both molasses and cane-juice based rums from three continents – hence Three Continent Blend or TCB.

These rums already ranged between two and 5 years of age prior to their ‘Dead Reckoning’ treatment.  They were married into an ex-Makers Mark Bourbon cask and tortured for a further 18 months under Justin’s hellish regime. Every afternoon the rack was wheeled over to the roll-a-door which was (un) ceremoniously opened to allow the full hit of the afternoon sun to smash it (in summer) and warm it’s icicle-ey  (well.. not quite icicle-ey I suppose) bones in winter. Once the sun went down, it was wheeled away and put to bed for the night. I’m not sure if Justin read it a story, or tucked it in – but I’m sure it went to bed each day knowing it was truly loved J

And so what was the result of this ‘Hot House’ treatment?  Well firstly, and objectively, a massive 27% angels share by volume accompanied by a 7.8% increase in ABV. Yep, the blend went into it’s finishing cask at 42.5% and has come out the other end at 50.3%. Both of those numbers are really quite astounding. But, when all the scientific dust is settled, what’s really important is … what does it taste like?

a hand-made, single-barrel, family-run, farm-to-bottle, artisanal-production Cachaça

Our Tasting Notes:

Nose: Wow, well first of all it’s a HUGE hit of yummy yummy fruit salad. Then there’s brown sugar, sultanas and subtle wafts of sweet “polythene glue making everything so sweet” (to quote Brisbane’s Regurgitator – a much better earworm). It’s just so big and sweet and… nosey. I could sit here nosing this for a week! It’s all-at-once earthy, floral, meaty AND fruity sweet!

Palate: The mix of still types gives this a creamy mouthfeel, but still a sense of ‘crispness’ of the column still. A medium pepper hit – but that tames very quickly and is much subdued by the second sip. There’s more funky tropical fruit here, but also liquorice, sweet caramel and even some very tame leather notes.

Finish: That big sweet funky ester train just keeps on a-rollin’. The pot still percentage keeps the oilyness going well into the finish – real chewy stuff. So many sweet fruits and lolly-memories tumble and spin and dash in and out.

This is a big, juicy and utterly delightful rum that is also a bit of a chameleon on your palate. Just when you think you’ve got it pegged, you pour another glass and find a new note that reminds you of something almost-forgotten from your childhood. In the subsequent drams since first penning these notes I’ve also picked up milk-bottle lollies, honey-jumble biscuits, tinned pineapple, sherbet and even a bubble gum from my very early days as a kindy kid in Switzerland who’s name I’ve forgotten – but I certainly remember that taste. It’s a rum you’re going to want another of to see if you did taste that… and another just to be sure.

  • PRICE : $139

  • ABV : 50.3%

  • BOTTLE: 700ml

  • REGION: Guyana / Vietnam / South Africa / Australia (SA)

  • No Added Sugar / No Added Colour

FROM DEAD RECKONING

Welcome to Australian hot house rum – otherwise known as Dead reckoning TCB.

I wanted to create a blend using three rums from three distilleries from three different continents. I also wanted to use Cane juice as well as molasses based rums. The Rums used for the blend was Guyana/South Africa/Vietnam. To my knowledge, I have not seen a blend with Mhoba or Sampan before. With the 3 stills used from Guyana it’s a blend within a blend. 

The Blend ratio : Guyana 8%, Mhoba 56%, Sampan 36%

Bourbon cask aged – 2-5 yrs Tropical & Australian dry aged 1 1/2 years 27% angels share.

A 3 still Guyanese blend – Port Mourant double wooden vat single retort / Enmore Coffee twin column  / Diamond Versailles single wooden vat single retort ) bourbon cask tropical aged Molasses based, Mhoba pot still rhum American oak African aged cane juice , Sampan rhum column still pure sugar cane juice

The South African and the Vietnamese just didn’t have enough backbone to it when I was playing around with the blend, it needed something with balls so the Guyana blend although it was only a minor component definitely gave it the foundations I was looking for

For this experiment, I decided to age a barrel of Rum in my steel sided garage in Adelaide South Australia. The Barrel used was a level three char 200 L EX makers mark bourbon Barrel.

I made a barrel rack on wheels and wheeled the barrel into the afternoon sun, every single afternoon for the 18-month period.

Then overnight it was brought inside where it naturally cooled down, its effect – opening and closing & contracting the internal oak barrel grain. Another factor to take into consideration is whilst it was wheeled twice a day, the rum was agitated / sloshed around.

Internal Barrel temperatures reached a maximum of 52° and a minimum of 2° over the ageing period of 1 1/2 years. In the shed – Lowest humidity reading was 15%, highest 88%. As well as a huge 7.8% increase in ABV over the 18 month period.

As an Indy bottler, it’s nice to be able to play around with things, try different blends, experiment and ultimately leave your fingerprint on a release. The end result on this experiment is a spirit that tastes well beyond its true age, rich viscous with layers of Stonefruit flavours.

ABOUT DEAD RECKONING

Justin Boseley, has immersed himself in rum for the past 20 years; a journey starting as a deck scrubbing lad with a thirst for Rum and adventure culminated in him becoming a Chief Officer; driving billionaire’s mega yachts around the world. This life of salty seadog adventure took him to Rum’s heartland, the Caribbean islands for 6 months a year, every year.

When he wasn’t at the helm of a mega-yacht he could be found hanging off a bar or at a distillery sampling the best the Caribbean rum scene had to offer. Upon ending his days at sea there was only one thing he knew better that navigating around the world’s oceans- that was Rum. For 10 years Justin has scoured the globe discovering & importing the world’s best rums into Australia.

Dead Reckoning is Australia’s first independent rum bottler, and each release from his bond-store is an anticipated event that never fails to please!  The Rum Tribe is incredibly proud of our close association with Justin and the Dead Reckoning brand.

ABOUT MHOBA

Nestled amongst the rolling hills of the Onderberg district of Mpumalanga and amidst our own sugarcane fields, you can find The MHOBA Rum Distillery: An artisan distillery where we make 10 different types of Pure Single Estate Sugarcane Rhum or Pure Single Sugarcane Rhum.

Unlike most traditional rum, which is made from molasses which is the by-product of refined sugar production, MHOBA rum is made from pure sugarcane juice. Our rum is 100% pot distilled from fermented sugarcane juice and contains no additives, colourings or flavour modifiers and is therefore termed Pure Single Rum; The rum equivalent of Single Malt Whiskey.

What makes MHOBA rhum even more unique is that the whole rum making process occurs on our sugar estate. From planting our own organic sugarcane right through to hand filling and labelling our bottles after distilling in our self-designed and self-built stills, MHOBA Rhum is 100% rum that is made by us.

ABOUT DISTILLERIE INDOCHINE

A team combining more than 35 years of experience in the field of wines and spirits, but above all, a group of friends dedicated to bringing together in the same project, their love for rum and their attachment to Vietnam. Antoine Poircuitte, the Master Distiller, driven by his passion and experience, wanted to bring back to taste a family tradition in order to elaborate the best Vietnamese agricultural rum.

The one and only place in Vietnam where you will be able to discover a French still and a traditional ageing method surrounded by a pristine beach! It is the ideal place for all lovers of Artisan rum who want to enjoy their tastings in a heavenly setting.

The harvesting time of Sampan production takes place at the end of each day. Harvesting done by hand means a low per-hectare yield but enhances a better juice concentration. To ensure maximum freshness and a high-quality juice cane, the canes are always delivered within 12 hours of harvesting, directly at our production site.

ABOUT DIAMOND DISTILLERY GUYANA

In 1993, there were only three distilleries still operating in Guyana (Diamond Distillery, Uitvlugt Distillery and Enmore Distillery). By 2000 only Diamond Distillery remained. Luckily (for the rum world), the stills and expertise from the Uitvlugt and Enmore Distilleries were transported and housed at the Diamond Distillery. These 4 ‘Heritage Stills’ (three of them wooden!) are still in use today at Diamond Distillery. And the Guyanese component of TCB is a blend of all of those stills!

Well it’s been a long time in the making, but we’ve finally done it! A RUM TRIBE EXCLUSIVE collaboration with those South Aussie soulsters of sublimation, the Adelaide angels of extraction, prehensile purveyors of PURE SINGLE RUM…has finally come of age!

Our own Mad Monkey Barossa cask is here… and it’s a BEAUT!

The Mad Monkey EX-Barossa Cask is made from NSW Northern Rivers molasses (from the Condong, Broadwater, and Harwood Sugar Mills) fermented using a mix of wild and commercial ale yeast. Double distilled in ‘Albert’ – Mad Monkeys Pot Still. Set down to age in American oak, ex-Barossa wine cask for 3 years and one month and finally bottled for the Rum Tribe at 43%abv.

Now we’ve featured Mad Monkey before – but never one of their aged rums. Their ‘Baked Apple’ is a big favourite of the Rum Tribe cocktail crowd but we’re stoked to finally be able to present a pure single rum from these awesome guys.

Now, this may only be Mad Monkey’s 4th aged rum release – but don’t let that fool you. These guys were running a full FIVE years before they released their first aged rum. They didn’t rush to market with a hurried 2yo, but rather perfected their fermentation and distillation before committing to the barrel.

Mad Monkey aren’t afraid to experiment with their rums. They use a mixture of wild yeast form their own ‘dunder and muck’ and commercial ale yeast in their Adelaide distillery. Interestingly, they are also presently experimenting with using bees as a way to collect wild yeasts from their local area.

The Ron Cubaney 15 year old Gran Reserva is possibly the hardest to find of all the Ron Cubaney Rums.

Our Tasting Notes:

Unfortunately, yours truly has come down with the dreaded ‘Rona during writing this and I have completely lost all sense of taste and smell. Luckily, Kirk Pinner from Island Coast Rum has been visiting Brisvegas and has kindly taken on the role of ‘guest rummer’ for the month.

Nose: With spiced cloves, all spice, sultanas, light golden syrup and fruit cake with a touch of sweet soft banana goes nicely with the golden appearance.

Palate: Easy to sip at 43% ABV and cools nicely with an ice cube on a warm evening. A balanced combination of burnt orange, sultanas and sugary spice.

Finish: A hint of aniseed, cloves, light and sweet brown sugar, and gentle bitterness with all spice coming through.

  • PRICE : $135

  • ABV : 43%

  • BOTTLE: 700ml

  • REGION: Australia (SA)

  • No Added Sugar / No Added Colour

FROM MAD MONKEY

Embark on an extraordinary journey with this batch release exclusive for our esteemed mates at the “Rum Tribe.”

Aged for 3 years and 1 month in Ex Barossa Valley Red Wine Casks, this exquisite spirit embodies unparalleled craftsmanship. Crafted with a blend of wild and ale yeast, it offers a sensory exploration like no other.

Delight in the tantalizing aroma of orange, dates, and minerals, paving the way for a palate of phenolic richness, tobacco undertones, and the sweetness of dried apricots. Its soft, oily texture unfolds into a spicy finish, leaving a lingering warmth.

Double Pot Distilled and matured in an American Oak barrel & seasoned with Barossa Valley Red Wine, this non-chill filtered creation is a testament to purity. With zero additives, save for reverse osmosis water to achieve perfection, each 700ml bottle at 43%abv reflects the epitome of indulgence, beckoning to be savoured neat, over ice, or any preferred manner.

Tasting notes.

Nose: Orange, Dates and minerals

Palate:  Phenolic, Tobacco, Dried Apricots

Mouthfeel:  Soft oily open and spicy finish.

Method: Double Pot Distilled

Yeast: Muck & Ale yeast

Maturation: 3yrs 1 mth

Barrel: American Oak & Barossa Valley Red wine

Zero additives except reverse osmosis water to break back to bottle strength. Non chill filtered. Designed to be sipped neat, over ice or however you damn please.

ABOUT MAD MONKEY

Way back in 2018, long before global pandemics and capacity restrictions were a thing, two monkeys were stumbling along their own crooked paths, dwelling on their dreams of bringing a slice of the Caribbean to little old South Australia.

Through sheer serendipity, the two monkeys’ paths crossed deep in the Barossa Valley, at an annual Australian Distiller’s Conference. After bonding over their shared ideals, and comparing their varied skill sets (and with the aid of some of Australia’s finest spirits) two Caribbean fever dreams began to manifest themselves as one…

5 years later, we present to you Mad Monkey – South Australia’s first dedicated rum distillery, nestled deep in the heart of Dudley Park. Using a mix of open fermentations, specialty yeasts and a little black magic, we aim to introduce our world to yours.

This month it is all about the Hellfire! Hellfire Bluff Distillery is a Tasmanian family-run farm-to-bottle producer recognised internationally for their own-grown potato vodka. In the last few years, they have been branching out and we’re stoked to be featuring their fourth Rum release bottled EXCLUSIVELY for the Tribe – The Hellfire Bluff Hellfire Rum RT01.  

Hellfire Rum RT01 is a molasses-based rum, with the base product trucked down from sunny QLD to the Apple Isle (Tassie grows a lot of great produce, but sugar cane just ain’t one of ‘em!). The water used in the ferment is the purest rainwater in the world ‘flown in’ straight from Antarctica and the Southern Pacific Ocean! It’s a column-distilled rum, coming out of spirit run at around 85%abv. Cool-Climate, sea side matured for 3 years in 100l ex-Apera and ex-Makers Mark Bourbon casks right on the SE corner of Tasmania. Bottled exclusively for the Rum Tribe at 43% (cut with that sweet, pure Tassie rainwater!).

Because it’s such a fantastic story, with such a fantastic end-product, we’re going to offer members a chance to taste their world renowned Vodka as well (the spirit that started it all for them). Why is it special you may ask? Well it’s one of only TWO distilleries in the Southern Hemisphere making vodka with potatoes, and one of a handful in the world.

Hellfire Rum

Tasmania isn’t the first place you think of when you think of rum – but it does make sense that some distilleries in the Apple Isle are starting to turn their attention to rum making. In the same way the Tasmanian climate emulates Scotland for ageing whisky (inspiring the ‘rebirth’ of the Australian whisky industry in the ‘90’s), a vast amount of rum is cold-aged in massive warehouses in Europe – which, obviously, Tasmanian climate can resemble too! We’re truly blessed with so many different aging climates enabling our country to turn out so many different and interesting rums!

Now whilst Tassie is probably best known for it’s whisky production, there is a growing stable of distillers down there who have turned their attention to other spirits – including rum. We’ve already tried (and loved… we sold out!) the Island Coast Rum from Tassie – and this month it’s Hellfire Bluff Distillery’s turn to slake the Rum Tribe’s thirst with their wonderful Hellfire Rum.

Hellfire Bluff distillery didn’t set out to make rum when it was first built back in 2015. In fact, it was built by the Daly family in order to diversify their potato farm business by using the 20% of potatoes that are rejected for sale simply because they ‘look funny’ (and subsequently passed off as cow fodder). They have set up one of the only 2 distilleries in the southern hemisphere making potato vodka. 

In 2020 when a certain virus shut down everything – the Daly’s used it as a chance to further diversify. Whilst a lot of distilleries went in the direction of producing alcohol for hand sanitizer – Hellfire decided to go with rum! Why rum? Well firstly the Daly family loves rum and secondly, at the time there was no one making rum in Tassie. It seemed like a no-brainer.

And last but certainly not least – these are not the standard 500ml Hellfire bottles- but just for the Rum Tribe, Hellfire have bottled for us in 700ml bottles. And in doing so we’ve completely cleaned them out of rum until at least after March!  The Rum Tribe is THIRSTY!

Hellfire Rum
Not just any vodka, only 1 of 2 Vodka’s made from potatoes in the Southern Hemisphere and one of a handful in the world.

Our Tasting Notes:

Nose: A very ‘brown’ nose – not very fruity, but more chocolate, espresso coffee and salted caramel with dusty oak notes sprinkled liberally there. There’s definitely a sweet and salty seaside influence here.

Palate: Nice and easy on the sip with that 43% abv very well integrated. Dried fruit jumps out on the palate much more so than is noticeable in the nose. Sultanas, raisins and mixed peel, as well as a nice nutty-nougat note – all drizzled with vanillary custard

Finish:  Sweet espresso coffee with crisp dark chocolate takes a tumble with some salted-caramel, cola notes and just the merest hint of pepper at the back of the palate as it fades.

A seriously easy drinking – yet very interesting and complex rum that will be just as loved by those new to good rum as the ‘old hands’. It’s not a funk-forward rum, there’s way more nuts and dark coffee than there is funky over-ripe fruit. It’s all about those ‘bitter-sweet’ notes to me – the dark chocolate, espresso coffee and nuts – all with a very subtle salty backdrop that can only be attributed to the seaside aging. Lovely!

  • PRICE : $119

  • ABV : 43%

  • BOTTLE: 700ml

  • REGION: Australia (TAS)

  • No Added Sugar / No Added Colour

Hellfire Rum

FROM HELLFIRE BLUFF DISTILLERY

Hey Rum Tribe!

We are so excited that our little potato farm distillery has been chosen for this month’s release. The Hellfire team has great passion for our small batch rum releases, and we think Rum Tribe has our best release yet!

Fermented, distilled, matured and bottled on site at our distillery on the rugged and remote southeast coast of Tasmania. This special release was barrel aged for 3 years, starting maturation in a Bourbon cask and finishing in an Apera cask.

First impressions on the nose are charred oak & tobacco, with dessert-like sweetness of raisin & custard.

A golden palate reveals walnuts balanced with a praline sweetness, rounded out with a hint of bourbon.

The finish is subtle yet long, with light cedar and a gradual reveal of pecan nougat.

Our cellar door is always open on the southeast coast of Tasmania, We hope you can come say hello to us one day soon!

Thanks – Ruby & The Hellfire Team

ABOUT HELLFIRE BLUFF DISTILLERY

Perched above the rugged expanse of Hellfire Bluff on Tasmania’s southeastern coast lies Daly Farm, the birthplace of Hellfire Bluff Distillery. More than 30 years ago, the Daly family hand-planted their inaugural potato crop, a humble beginning that now sees them supplying potatoes to retailers across Tasmania. Unconventional as far as distillery origins go, their journey unfolded as they pursued a dream of crafting distinctive spirits and adding value to the potatoes cultivated on their farm.

The distillery’s inception marked the introduction of their premium Potato Vodka, a traditional-style spirit that stands out as one of the few in Australia crafted from potatoes. This unique creation earned them the title of Best Australian Varietal Vodka at the 2022 World Vodka Awards.

Fueling their passion for crafting top-tier spirits, Hellfire Bluff Distillery expanded its repertoire to include small-batch Tasmanian Gins, highly coveted Liqueurs, Ready-to-Drink offerings, and cool-climate Tasmanian Rum. Emphasizing quality ingredients, the entire product line utilizes pristine local Tasmanian rainwater harvested on the farm. Along their journey, Hellfire has garnered acclaim at esteemed national and global competitions, amassing over 40 medals, 17 of which are gold. Notably, their Summer Floral Gin secured the title of Australia’s Best Contemporary Gin at the 2021 World Gin Awards.

Well welcome to 2024! Happy New Year Tribe and we are off and racing with a huge EXCLUSIVE AUSTRALIAN RELEASE to bring in the new year! The Dead Reckoning South Pacific

A ten-year-old, muscat cask, 100% tropically aged, single blended rum from the legendary South Pacific Distillery in Fiji…bring on the Dead Reckoning South Pacific!

The Dead Reckoning South Pacific – is a bit of a dichotomy.  The first impression is of one of a HUGE rum that absolutely CHARGES out of the bottle and rams into your olfactory system as you open it for the first time. It’s just such a, well, BIG smell it’s almost a little disconcerting imagining how it’s going to hit the palate…and yet when you do take your first sip, what strikes you is just how immensely well behaved this Fabulous Fijian is!      

Dead Reckoning South Pacific

Sometimes a rum has a story that defies belief. Sometimes a rum is ‘just right’ when an indy bottler finds it. Sometimes it needs nothing more – just a qualified eye in the right place at the right time… and a little bit of luck of course. This is the story of such a rum. Distilled in 1994 at South Pacific Distillery – a blend of both [‘double thumper’] pot and column still rum. It was tropically aged in Fiji in Australian Muscat Casks (from Charles Sturt Winery in Wagga Wagga to be precise!) for 10 years. In 2004, these casks were married into a single stainless steel tank. The tank was then shipped to an Amsterdam rum warehouse where it was promptly forgotten about. 

Forgotten about, that is, until in 2022 (a full 18 years later!) when a certain Justin Boseley was snooping around the dusty back corners of said warehouse sniffing out unusual rums (he’s like a bloody truffle-pig in a bond-store, people!). I like to imagine he climbed over a few racks of barrels, before pulling back a dusty tarp to reveal this mysterious stainless vessel. I also like to imagine the smile that formed when he cracked the lid and first smelled the precious cargo it held.

Normally, at this point Justin would put the tank on a boat, sail it to Adelaide where he would finish it in a cask or casks he felt would improve the flavour in the dry Adelaide heat. For example, last time we offered a South Pacific Distillery Dead Reckoning (the 21 year old Mutiny South Pacific, back in 2021) Justin had finished it in Cream Apera Casks in Adelaide for 12 months.  This time though – for the first time – Justin had found a rum that was absolutely ready to rock and roll just as it was. So he bottled it onsite in Amsterdam and then sent it to Europe and the USA as part of his first onslaught into these huge markets.

Now we’re big fans and good friends of the Dead Reckoning brand – and it’s this ongoing friendship that has allowed us to received an allocation of an otherwise Europe-USA only release (there is only 1240 bottles worldwide). For the Dead Reckoning collectors – note the foil-sealed cork on this rather than the wax seal screw-top used on the Australian-bottled releases!

Dead Reckoning South Pacific
The only rum EVER to come out of NSW powerhouse distillery Corowa!

Our Tasting Notes:

Nose: So much going on here – and every time you go back you get something new! Gingerbread a-plenty at first, but then sultanas, bananas and pawpaw – all mashed up rather than funkily over-ripe. There’s candied peel there too… and cloves… and biscuit spices… and then…

Palate: Lovely sweet and lusciously tropical. Just the merest smidge of heat at first but the succulent sweetness quickly extinguishes any fire. Huge, voluptuous and syrupy fruit notes coat the palate like render as vanilla-ey custard notes dollop on for the ride.      

Finish: The finish backs up the nose and palate admirably – there’s no disappointing ‘fizzle out’ on this back end. Thunderous barrels of chewy dried dates, liquorice, black coffee and toffee roll on and on, bumping over funky fruit notes and more of that [delicious IMHOP] ginger nut bickie spice. Flavour-wise this is a mammoth rum – so much to be lip-smacked and tooth-sucked out of this offering from Dead Reckoning. It’s truly a gentle giant though – it gives a warm yet considerate hug, it’s affable and it’s easily approachable by both rum newbie AND total-rum-geek.

Seriously – I feel a bit of cheat with these tasting notes. There are new flavours to be found pretty much every sip – let alone if you leave it and come back 10 minutes later – LET ALONE TOMORROW!!  Whilst you could mix this with a ginger beer or ginger ale quite easily – frankly, it’s just waaay to good to adulterate with anything other than some ice (it’s bloody hot this time of year, after all!).

  • PRICE : $129

  • ABV : 47%

  • BOTTLE: 700ml

  • REGION: Fiji

  • No Added Sugar / No Added Colour

Dead Reckoning South Pacific

FROM DEAD RECKONING

After sampling this rum that was purely aged in the Sth Pacific I knew I had to have it . Initially destined for release in Europe & the US, it was decided the Rum Tribe had to have a slice of the pie as well . 

I first bottled this in Amsterdam, then shipped it back to Australia. It’s time spent in a Muscat cask rounds off this once untamed rum perfectly. It still has hints of the rawness that’s always attracted me to South Pacific rum, but its 10 years in a Muscat cask had added layers of flavour profile & a subtle dipping experience. First distilled in 1994, barrel aged 10years in Fiji, then 18 additional years in a stainless steel holding tank have married the flavour chain together perfectly. 

Nosed it has a herbal quality, similar to St Lucian rum. Pine Cones, some Pot Pourri and a touch of eucalyptus. Further nosing reveals some molasses, toffee and sweet vanilla. Time in the glass gives more time for the aromas to reveal themselves. Slightly menthol notes appear alongside some light tar and cigarette smoke.

It’s a complex nose. It’s a rum which is really worth sitting with and nosing. You will get a lot out of it this way and it will also improve your sipping experience. It is both light and soft, yet quite menacing at the same time.

On the sip it is quite spicy with a fair amount of barrel influence. It’s oaky but the spice from the oak isn’t overly woody. You get a good hit of sweet vanilla. The herbal nature of the rum comes out more with each sip – the pine cones and eucalyptus that was on the nose is very evident. I’m also getting a carbolic/soapy element.

On the mid palate the rum evolves further. A sooty/tarriness comes through. I think if you experienced a Fijian rum – for the first time you could well think it was a blend. It has elements of St Lucian rum, heavy Caroni and most definitely funky Jamaican notes.

The initial sip and mid palate carry a fruitiness as well, which works nicely with the more herbal notes. It keeps the more aggressive elements of this rum at bay. It keeps the balance nicely.

ABOUT DEAD RECKONING

Justin, has immersed himself in rum for the past 20 years; a journey starting as a deck scrubbing lad with a thirst for Rum and adventure culminated in him becoming a Chief Officer; driving billionaire’s mega yachts around the world. This life of salty seadog adventure took him to Rum’s heartland, the Caribbean islands for 6 months a year, every year.

When he wasn’t at the helm of a yacht he could be found hanging off a bar or at a distillery sampling the best the Caribbean rum scene had to offer. Upon ending his days at sea there was only one thing he knew better that navigating around the world’s oceans- that was Rum. For 10 years Justin has scoured the globe discovering & importing the world’s best rums into Australia.

Dead Reckoning is Australia’s first independent rum bottler. We know there’s more in the works from Dead Reckoning and we can’t wait to try more and more of these fabulous independent bottling from a true rum legend.

ABOUT SOUTH PACIFIC DISTILLING

The South Pacific Distillery is known as the quite achiever, often producing rums under a cloak of secrecy, supplying independent bottlers with mind blowing rums. Their distillery is named ‘South Pacific Distillery’ and they use column stills and a John Dore pot still / double retort (double thumper) configuration. This still configuration is much better explained by others than myself. And HERE is a very good explanation of the ‘double thumper’.

Other very well-known rum distilleries such as St Lucia distillers, Foursquare, Hampden & Worthy Park use the same or a very similar system.

A closed fermentation process using molasses (closed so that birds don’t fall into the ferment) for 70 to 100 hours produces what can only be described as an element of funk. Dunder is not used; controlled yeast is the activator in their ferment.

High Grade Sugar cane and subsequently molasses is in no shortage on the islands of the South pacific, ideal for quality rum production.

After the ferment is run through the still the “rum” is normally stored in Ex Bourbon barrels in its high temp and humidity environment. The colour of this rum is evident that its “tropical ageing” is a rewarding and tumultuous partner, providing a full bodied and funky rum.