Transcontinental Rum Line

Limited Edition Rum, Without Borders

Transcontinental Rum Line is the creation of a partnership between venerable French independent bottler La Maison du Whisky and Velier, an Italy-based Rum innovator that developed its own Caribbean Rum line in the 1980s. Established in 2017, the project is inspired by the historic, cross-equatorial journeys made by Rum barrels from individual islands to the rest of the world during the spirit’s golden age, at a time when Rum was a major commodity. To date, TCRL has released over 30 limited edition bottlings and created quite a stir among Rum aficionados. Having recently tasted the latest releases, we are delighted to confirm the hype is justified.

La Maison du Whisky was founded in 1956 and quickly established itself as an important and influential Whisky importer and bottler. In fact, founder Georges Bénitah was one of the original importers of Scotch Whisky into France. Naturally, since that time the business has (very successfully) diversified into other spirits. When it came to revamping their Rum offering, they turned to category pioneer and specialist Luca Gargano at Velier.

Through an intensive selection process, Luca Gargano and Thierry Bénitah carefully select only the finest barrels they believe warrant the small-batch nature of their product. Less than 10 casks are chosen for each Rum, so batches rarely exceed 2000 bottles.

The inspiration for Transcontinental Rum Line lay in the age-old tradition of Island Rum being purchased in its youth and transported and matured on the European continent. The bottlers point out that continental-aged rums traditionally display richer and sweeter characters than the more ester-forward island expressions. So, the idea is that a combination of these two aging methods will produce something unique. The Rums complete their aging at LMDW’s facility in Cognac.

Quality aside, one of the brand’s founding pillars is a level of transparency and authenticity often found lacking. In bold type, each label details the Rum’s source, the year of distillation, the production method (by way of the Velier classification), where and for how long the spirit was matured, and the order in which the batch was bottled.

Currently, we ship four exceptional vintage Rums originating from Panama, Jamaica, Fiji and Australia, plus two Caribbean-aged rums, one golden from the Dominican Republic and Jamaica, and an outrageous high-ester Agricole-style white Rum from Haiti and Jamaica. Quantities are very limited, so please get in touch with your rep if you would like more information. It has been said that Rum is less of a drink and more a way of life. Tasting these spirits, we wonder who wouldn’t mind a piece of that?

The Range

Transcontinental Rum Line Jamaica 2013
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Transcontinental Rum Line Jamaica 2013

Line #25, ex-Bourbon barrel, Pure Single Rum (pot still). Natural colour, non-sugared. Worthy Park Estate is the oldest sugar factory in Jamaica and has been in operation since 1670, with an annexed distillery functioning with a single Forsyth’s double-retort pot still. After several years out of operation, the installation of a new pot still in 2005 gave rise to the resurgence of the distillery operation. The Jamaica 2013 was distilled from fermented molasses and matured in ex-Bourbon barrels. Bottled at Navy Strength, this opulent Rum has matured for more than four years on the island and one year in Europe. The aromas are beautifully understated considering the abv. All components are in balance—fruit, vanilla and high-toned esters all working in unison. The spirit has nice grip which counterbalances the rich and viscous mouthfeel. There’s a quick briny hit followed by honey, nectar and stone fruit and just a touch of marzipan. The finish is long and harmonious. This is something to sip and savour—add water to bring the savoury, earthy flavours to the fore.

The aromas are beautifully understated considering the abv. All components are in balance—fruit, vanilla and high-toned esters all working in unison. The spirit has nice grip which counterbalances the rich and viscous mouthfeel. There’s a quick briny hit followed by honey, nectar and stone fruit and just a touch of marzipan. The finish is long and harmonious. This is something to sip and savour—add water to bring the savoury, earthy flavours to the fore.

Transcontinental Rum Line Jamaica 2013
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Transcontinental Rum Line Panama 2013
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Transcontinental Rum Line Panama 2013

Line #34, ex-Bourbon barrel, Traditional Rum. Natural colour, non-sugared. In 1936, nearly three decades after establishing Panama’s first sugar mill in 1908, Don Jose Varelo’s three sons persuaded him to set up a distillery—and so, Hermanos Veralo (otherwise known as the Don Jose Distillery) was born. Made from molasses and distilled in column stills at Don Jose Distillery, the maturation for this spirit took place under tropical conditions near the Panama Canal. Here, the Rum was stored for five years in ex-Bourbon barrels, after which it made its journey to Europe for a further year maturation. The nose has exotic fruits and more floral tones than expected considering its years in ex-Bourbon oak. There’s a sweet coconut lift and a hint of aniseed. The palate is open and generous with more of those floral and fruity notes and a touch of manzanilla overlaying clove and nutmeg spice.

The nose has exotic fruits and more floral tones than expected considering its years in ex-Bourbon oak. There’s a sweet coconut lift and a hint of aniseed. The palate is open and generous with more of those floral and fruity notes and a touch of manzanilla overlaying clove and nutmeg spice.

Transcontinental Rum Line Panama 2013
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Transcaribbean Rum Line Flying King
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Transcaribbean Rum Line Flying King

Distilled and aged in Jamaica and the Dominican Republic for three years. The Jamaican component (40%) is from the Trelawny Parish and fermentation was long and wild. The Rum was then distilled in copper double retort pot stills. The Dominican component was column-distilled, and has been produced in the Spanish style, which is rounder and more mouth-filling, complementing the funk of the Jamaican proportion. This was tropically aged for three years before bottling. Oak comes to the fore on the nose, with plenty of musk lollies, crème brûlée and cake spice overlying the ester characters. The palate is full and round, with lashings of butter and a nice intensity from the heat. The fruit is delicate and in the tropical spectrum and it finishes strong with a lick of macadamia nut.

Oak comes to the fore on the nose, with plenty of musk lollies, crème brûlée and cake spice overlying the ester characters. The palate is full and round, with lashings of butter and a nice intensity from the heat. The fruit is delicate and in the tropical spectrum and it finishes strong with a lick of macadamia nut. Perfect serve: shorter cocktails where the oak and body can shine, like a Cuba Libre or an Old Fashioned.

Transcaribbean Rum Line Flying King
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Country

Multiple

Primary Region

Caribbean

Availability

National

Test Information Two

Transcaribbean Mojito recipe

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