Review: Brinley Gold Shipwreck Spiced Rum

Review: Brinley Gold Shipwreck Spiced Rum

More spiced rum (check out the chatter on the BlackBeard coverage here, and keep the fun going below) from the folks at Brinley, which makes some very good flavored rums.

Shipwreck hails from St. Kitts and is aged for four years before being juiced up with exotic (and unnamed) spices.

Brinley’s rendition of spiced rum carries a big and flavorful kick. I love the way Shipwreck hits the palate, with sweet rum smoothed out by age and time in the barrel, plus a good shake of cinnamon, orange, woody notes, and a marshmallow-like candiness. It’s not too spicy, with clear sweetness dominating.

But the joy fades as Shipwreck gets toward the finish. A funky kind of skunkiness — that what David Wondrich reminds us is sometimes called “hogo” — that, on its own, isn’t entirely wonderful. For a spiced rum, it may just be too much wood, too much clove — or perhaps not enough alcohol. At 72 proof it’s decidedly light and maybe a touch watery.

It drowns away in Coke, but comparing Shipwreck against a more balanced spiced rum without doctoring, you’ll have no trouble sussing out the superior.

72 proof.


Brinley Gold Shipwreck Spiced Rum




Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.


  1. Edoc on August 29, 2010 at 7:54 am

    I think this is one of the better spiced rums on the market. Better than Kracken, in my book, although lighter alcohol.

  2. JD on August 29, 2010 at 8:58 am

    I would love to try this but I can not get the distributors link on the Brinley website to function. Does anybody know what distributors handle this particular spirit?

  3. Anonymous on November 18, 2010 at 7:12 pm

    Horrible. I am a rum person and to me this is one of the worst I have had in a long time. The spices seemed like they would be nice but in the end the aftertaste is overwhelming. The bouquet is nice at first but becomes sickeningly sweet. If at first you think you like this rum just wait for the aftertaste, you will be turned off instantaneously . I will stick with Sailor Jerry for an every day rum.

  4. john on November 30, 2010 at 11:30 am

    seriously? this is one of the best rums I have ever tasted. it is so good it doesnt even need a mixer, honestly. drink it neat or on some ice.

  5. maria on December 1, 2010 at 9:18 am

    This is absolutely fabulous! We had the Brinley Spiced Rum in a mojito in Downtown Disney at the crab shack and it was amazing! The best rum I have ever tasted! Keep it up Brinleys!

  6. Scott T on May 11, 2012 at 11:19 am

    I wonder if there are problems with quality control on this rum, because I agree with the favorable comments above – this is far and away the best spiced rum I have had, and have had quite a few. I can’t even imagine rating Cruzan 9 above this, I find it very artificial tasting.

    i see some sediment at the bottom of the bottle, if these are spices then it is possible there are bottles out there with more sediment than others, and if they sat for a while that could cause off flavors.

  7. Caroline on January 9, 2015 at 7:16 am

    I agree too, this is an exceptional spiced rum in my book (I haven’t had a chance to try any of the flavored ones). I brought it to a party with my dad and a bunch of his work friends and it was the first thing to go. I think it goes really well with cranberry juice. The only places I can find it are local stores… You can really taste the spices, and to me it doesn’t have that rubbing alcohol aftertaste.

  8. EKJ on July 26, 2015 at 7:18 am

    Just picked up a bottle of this and can’t wait to try it! I was a little worried as once I got home I noticed a lot of particles, some look like sugar, others are larger and darker and look like either spices or maybe bits of the barrel? I was a little nervous that I had a bottle with some defect in the rum but since someone else also noticed the particulate matter in there that puts my mind at ease

  9. Anonymous on January 16, 2020 at 7:20 pm

    Same about the particles. I’m with yuh, but after reading your comment, I’m fine with it. Cheers.

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