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Black Tot Royal Navy Rum is a blended, aged rum in that had been stored for 40 years in stone flagons by the British Royal Navy. The rum is part of the last rum ration served to British Royal Navy sailors on July 31, 1970 when the 300-year old tradition of a daily rum ration, or "tot", ended.
Until recently when 1000 bottles were made available for public sale, Black Tot Royal Navy rum was reserved only at British Royal weddings and State functions.
Now this is some good stuff
I can't give it a 10 just for historical import, but it's a deeply complex specimen. Like spices and black tar and deep pungent fruit that's been rotting in the sun yet is still sweet. A little leather and tobacco. But it leaves you with a taste of caramel corn in the tail.
So, I had this a couple years ago at place called Hogo in DC, which is unfortunately closed now. I ponied up $50 for a one ounce pour on two occasions. Once for me, and a second time to share with a history nerd friend of mine.
So, this rum is not very palatable. It has some nice notes of leather and tobacco with a backdrop of diesel.....or perhaps more like hydraulic fluid. It totally lived up to its expectations. If the military was in the business of distilling spirits, this is the product you would get.
That all being said, if you get a chance to drink this.......do it! Imagine yourself toasting a victory at Trafalgar, or sinking the Bismarck, or suffering from scurvy somewhere in the south Pacific. While this is not the best rum in the world, it is a great way to celebrate and experience how rum played a small part in affecting our world.
I had the occasion to taste a little of this but a little was enough, it`s an explosion of flavors, dark fruits, leather, wood, tropical fruit mash, cocoa, coffee...and the aftertaste stayed for a very very long time, i was quite amazed. It´s way too expensive for me to buy me a bottle though.
So we all know the story given behind the guys responsible for marketing this rum and to be fair they did well (and made good money!). But, I have been made aware of a different version of events which actually means this isnt technically a navy rum at all. In fact it was found in Germany, boxed up in an used section of an army base! No-body knows where it really came from, who distilled it, what is blended in it or who's it really was...?
The rum itself offers treacle on the nose at first, with dark chocolate, black fruits & nuts. Thick and sweet on the palate, becoming light and oaky before berries, espresso & cacao burst through. Great with a nice fat cigar :-D
Really rich and deep molasses flavour, but with a slight dull note which is what drags the over all flavour down.
Nice story and presentation, but not on my immediate purchase list at the price it sells for.
The Black Tot is a veritable explosion of flavour. A thick and heavy dark rum, with notes of licorice, it appeals to everything I like in rum. The flavour stays for longer than I had thought possible, and once we finished the tot, three of us sat around enjoying the lingering scent for well over an hour.
This is not a rum I would ever buy a bottle of; nor a rum I would buy a pour of on my own, but I do feel privileged to have had the chance of sharing a tot, and would prefer this over everything else if someone else pays.
I always thought that the rum given to the navy back in the day would have been fairly rough and when they went bleary eyed and said it was the best rum ever, there may have been a hint of romanticism there.
After tasting I have to admit this rum is like no other.
Heavy nose of molasses, treacle and winter fruits folowed by spice and coffee on the palate.
There is also a lot of oak all the way through to the finish, but this is a heavy rum and holds it well.
One for a special occasion as it comes with a fairly hefty price tag, but it is a remarkable piece of history you're buying along with an amazing rum.
"New York Times editorial featuring Black Tot Royal Navy rum"
"Black Tot Royal Navy rum review by Tim from The Whiskey Exchange"
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