Newfoundlander’s White Rum
80 Proof – Rum
Approx. $29.99 750ml
Our good friend Paul did it again, he picked us up a bottle of Newfoundlander’s Rum on his last trip through Canada. This worked out very well, since I didn’t have anything ready to review, and I was in the mood for rum. When he handed me the bottle, I was pleasantly surprised that it wasn’t covered in corny pirates or some sort of sea creature. The label on the bottle looked like a painting of a scruffy fisherman sitting on a beach looking out at the sea. It is a nice looking bottle and after looking it up, I found out a Canadian artist named David Blackwood created a series of narrative artworks for the labels. Six different labels were made, each one shows the people who live in the rock harbors of Newfoundland.
Since I was at work and I couldn’t crack the bottle open, I decided to look at some reviews of the rum. It took some searching, but I found a few and they were all pretty positive, but didn’t give a good picture of what I had in store for me. I then found out that it is pretty hard to resist a bottle of rum sitting in front of you all day, especially when you’re having a bad day, but I made it.
As soon as I arrived home the bottle was cracked open. I couldn’t get much from the sniff, but I could detect a slight sweetness and almonds. Going by the fragrance, I would expect a simple mellow rum with more rubbing alcohol flavor than anything else. Well, I couldn’t have been more wrong. This rum packs a punch, the first sip, neat, had me searching for a chaser. I really didn’t expect all the flavors or the burn. It seemed as if I just sipped on a 100 proof dark rum. This bottle is a slightly higher proof than some, but at only 40% alc./ vol. you could really feel it go down.
There was a lot going on in that first sip, vanilla and caramel are dominant, but there is some mint at the end. It finishes sharply and then the burn shows up. I didn’t dislike any of it, even after putting the small fire out in my throat. It was just surprising, and I’m not man enough to finish what I poured neat. I added some ice and this not only helped the fire, but it became slightly creamier. The flavors didn’t change much and it was more drinkable, but after I finished my glass, I didn’t think I could handle another one without a mixer.
I decided that the coke chaser that saved me earlier would do the trick, I gave it a splash and was underwhelmed. The flavors faded and it started tasting metallic. I was pretty disappointed, this rum straight is flavorful and bold, but rough around the edges. Soda usually softens the blow, and gets along well with rum, but that was not the case this time.
I think maybe adding some citrus bitters or using it in a tropical drink would allow this rum to shine. I will have to try that another night, but for now if you like to sip your rum neat or enjoy a nice rum and coke, I would skip this one.