• Ivar

The Rum Battle: Worthy Park Estate vs Hampden Estate

Updated: Apr 10, 2019

Worthy Park and Hampden Estate are both very old distilleries that each have something new about them. Worthy Park was founded in 1670, producing rum intermittently from the 1740’s. Production seized in 1962 and the distillery equipment was dismantled. Luckily they started distilling again in 2005 with a brand new pot still. Their “Single Estate Reserve” has become an important part of their standard lineup. It’s a blend of rums, aged between 6 and 10 years.


Hampden Estate was founded in 1753. For most of their existence they have been selling bulk rum. Majority shipped to, and aged in Europe. It wasn’t until a few years ago that they finally brought rums to market under their own name; Hampden Gold and Rum Fire. These were both unaged rums though.


Now they’ve gone a step further by bottling their own aged rum. This is a momentous occasion for such an iconic distillery and for the world of rum in general. Their “Pure Single Jamaican Rum” is aged for 7 years in the hot Jamaican climate and then bottled at two different strengths; 46% and 60%.


Both distilleries are rich in history, both are using pot stills only, both are ageing rums in the same climate. Time for a comparison! It’s Hampden Pure Single Jamaican Rum at 46% vs Worthy Park Single Estate Reserve at 45%.



Nosing


Worthy Park Single Estate Reserve

Banana is the fist thing that comes up, which is not surprising as they are known for that. Additionally there is apple, oak, citrus, toffee, tropical fruit and molasses. It smells like a rum distillery, which is a good thing.


Hampden Pure Single Jamaican Rum

Oh my this is intense! Tropical fruit, mint, vanilla, ripe banana, faint cardboard, moss, pineapple, raisins, olives, cherry, apple, herbs. For a Hampden rum it is mild on the funk, although funkier than the Worthy Park.


The nosing experience with this rum is like playing the slots and pressing the “payout” button while you’ve only won $100, but it’s paying you in quarters. Ting ting ting ting ting ting….*10 minutes later*…ting ting ting. You look around to see if anyone’s noticing you being the ultimate winner. That’s what this rum does on the nose. It keeps on giving. Wonderful.


Nosing conclusion


I found the nose on the Hampden super interesting and intense. The Worthy Park is milder and you have to search more for the different elements, but they are there. Hampden wins this round. Let’s see if it can provide the KO in the tasting round.


Credit: Steve Leukanech

Tasting


Hampden Pure Single Jamaican Rum

A lot less intense than I expected. It’s quite spicy and I’m getting mint, tropical fruit, citrus, and a herbalicious petrol note.


Worthy Park Single Estate Reserve

The banana returns, then black berries, vanilla, oak, sweet candy cane, licorice wine gums and toffee. It’s slightly vegetal and has funk and spice on the long finish. Great balance and flavour! Marvelous!


Conclusion


The gap between the nosing and the tasting is rather large with the Hampden. Compared to the incredible nose it tastes quite dull. That's mostly down to the nose being as excellent as it is though.



The Worthy Park is more consistent, balanced and has a finish that lasts a lot longer. Perhaps not as interesting on the nose, but it wins the tasting round convincingly.


I could sip this Worthy Park rum every day for the rest of my life. I can’t say the same for the Hampden, even though I think it’s a very good rum that will give people a great introduction to Jamaican funk.


Worthy Park for the win.


Scores:


1. Worthy Park Single Estate Reserve – 82

2. Hampden Pure Single Jamaican Rum - 77


Click here for info on the scoring method.

0 views

© 2020 - Rum Revelations