Review: Appleton Estate Rum 15 Years Old Black River Casks
Appleton’s latest Jamaican rum expression is a 15 year old bottling, courtesy of Master Blender Joy Spence. The “Black River Casks” in question “pay homage to the Black River in Jamaica’s Nassau Valley, the source of the limestone-filtered water used to create all Appleton Estate rum.” As far as I can tell, there’s nothing unique about the casks themselves, which are 40-gallon American oak barrels. The juice inside is a typical Appleton blend of pot and column-still rums.
Anyone familiar with the Appleton house style will find plenty to enjoy here, kicking off with a rich nose that offers ample notes of allspice and cloves, extracted fruit notes, and a restrained hogo character that keeps everything in balance. The palate doubles down on the tiki spice elements, a base of red fruit and figs finding kinship with a healthy cinnamon character. Everything feels like it’s going great up to the finish, which comes across as a bit thin for a 15 year old rum. However, a nice clove character lingers after the fruit fades out.
It may be too expensive for regular use as a mixer, but would certainly excel as one.