Wealth Solutions was established in 2007 with a mission to provide luxury goods for demanding customers, according to their website. It’s a Polish company that sells high end wine, whisky, rum, cognac and watches. You can buy entire casks if you’d like (of the spirit, not the watches).
The company name doesn’t make me think about rum necessarily. Instead I think of a firm who helps you spend and/or invest a lot of money. Perhaps real estate or stock market related. I see lawyers in fancy suits. I certainly don’t associate it with the popping sound of a cork, unless it's to celebrate a massive real estate deal. Perhaps that’s why they have a sub brand called “Colours of rum”. This sounds a lot more appealing and very appropriate for such a colourful spirit. It’s another independent bottler, fighting for market share in a very competitive rum landscape. In this company’s case, they focus on higher end rums, mostly very old releases from established distilleries.
The prices of these rums are high. Which is to be expected, as old rums are expensive. Although absolute bargains compared to whiskies of similar ages. In my experience, older isn’t always better, which makes me reluctant to spend the kind of money that’s needed to obtain these Colour of rum releases. Of course, if you are a very wealthy person, you might not care about the prices. Heck, you might not even care about the contents of the bottle. You’ll just leave it in a vault to be sold in a few decades. It’s all good, it’s a wealth solution.
Their bottles stand out with bright colourful labels. All of them representing a colour of the national flag of the respective country. That’s a nice touch. The Wealth Solutions logo looks very out of place. The back label contains a good amount of technical information about what’s in the bottle.
The people behind Colours of rum messaged me and subsequently sent me a sample pack of several releases. I’ve picked three for comparison. All of them originating in Guyana. Currently there is only one distillery in Guyana, Demerara Distillers Ltd, or DDL. Known to most people through their El Dorado brand. There used to be a ton of distilleries in Guyana, more on that here. However, all of them closed down over time and some of their stills ended up at DDL. The rums I picked for this review are so old that none of them were distilled at DDL. The Enmore and Uitvlugt distilleries have since closed, however the particular stills involved with these three rums have survived and are currently at DDL.
Colours of rum No 2 – Guyana 1988 – 33 years (Continental) – Enmore Distillery – MEV Versailles Single Wooden Pot Still – 48%
Colours of rum No 3 – Guyana 1989 – 32 years (Continental) – Uitvlugt Distillery – PM Port Mourant Double Wooden Pot Still – 64.1%
Colours of rum No 7 – Guyana 1991 – 30 years (Continental) – Uitvlugt Distillery – PM Port Mourant Double Wooden Pot Still – 68.7%
The Guyana 1988 spent all its life in an ex-rum cask. Guyana 1989 was aged in ex-whisky cask for 20 years, they have no information on the vessel for the other 12 years. Guyana 1991 was in ex-bourbon barrel for 10+ years and in French oak for another 19+ years.
Very pale in colour, rum 2 is much darker and rum 3 in between the others.
Oak, raisins, molasses, cardboard, orange peel, strong on citrus, pencil shavings, fresh paint, furniture polish (Pledge). It’s fruity and smells great. Best nose of the 3.
Cherry, oak is pronounced, prunes, creamy vanilla, dried fruit, caramel, saw dust, anise, light leather, sherry, cherry alcohol bonbon. Very nice.
Smells of a hot jigsaw in action. Red fruit, oak, menthol, molasses, raisins, burnt caramel, crème brulee, burnt wood, light red apple, cinnamon candy. It’s the least interesting nose, but it’s nice. Mellow.
A bit thin and very woody. Mint, raisins, citrus, vanilla, molasses, burnt wood. Somewhat fruity. Finish is medium in length with noticeable bitterness. Fresh paint shows up at the end and a ton of oak. Disappointing. Better as perfume than as a drink.
Oak, red wine, raisins, leather, black pepper, red fruit, chocolate. Wood spice is strong. Finish is long and dry. Slightly bitter, but not as much as the 1988. It’s a fuller, thicker rum. A real mouth full that sticks with you for a while. Best finish of the three.
Dusty wood, menthol, sweet vanilla, caramel, pencil shavings, burnt wood, cinnamon is quite strong, orange peel, raisins, tobacco. It’s the sweetest profile of the three. Solid long finish that has a hint of sweetness to it, keeping the bitterness at bay somewhat.
Trying rums this old makes me feel special. The thought that I was in high school when these were distilled at a distillery that doesn’t exist anymore, is fascinating. The patience involved to leave them in a cask this long is commendable. Question is though, are they any good after all those years? Hasn’t the wood taken over completely? The answer in this case is yes and no.
The Enmore 1988 certainly has been in the cask for too long imho. It’s thin and totally dominated by oak. It’s great on the nose, so I rate it highly as a perfume, but as a drink it’s very disappointing. It’s probably better to keep this bottle closed, use it to tell proud stories to your friends and eventually sell it in 20 years.
Uitvlugt 1991 is a massive step up. Good on the nose and palate. Perhaps a little on the mellow side, but lots to explore on the palate. It’s been in two different barrels, has the highest abv, is the most expensive……but not the best.
The best is Uitvlugt 1989. What a fantastic rum. A real powerhouse. Thick and full. Great complexity. A little bit of bitterness, but not overwhelmingly. This is a historic gem. I feel honoured that I’ve been able to taste it.
Last thought. Both Uitvlugt releases have been distilled on the double wooden Port Mourant still. I’ve tasted quite a few rums from this still and find them fairly easy to distinguish as Port Mourant expressions. However, not these two. The terroir between Uitvlugt and DDL is slightly different of course and the people operating the still were different. Some knowledge might have been lost over time. I’d love to hear from Guyana rum experts about this difference and what might have caused it.
Colours of rum No 2 – Guyana 1988 – 70
Colours of rum No 3 – Guyana 1989 – 90
Colours of rum No 7 – Guyana 1991 – 85
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