Spirits Review: Roggen’s Rum

This bottle was full when I started this review (just kidding, I can still type).

This bottle was full when I started this review (just kidding, I am still able to type).

If you haven’t heard of Tuthilltown Spirits by now, you should stop reading this post, go to the nearest liquor store (preferably ours), and get yourself a bottle of literally anything they make. The prices are by no means low, but the quality of everything they make is outstanding (don’t believe me? Ask the New York Times’ Eric Asimov), and Roggen’s Rum, one of their more recent releases, is no exception. Here’s a bit of information on Roggen’s Rum, straight from Tuthilltown Spirits’ website:

Tuthilltown Spirits has teamed up with the Huguenot Historical Society of New Paltz to produce a limited run of aged rum celebrating the history of the Hudson River commerce and the early pioneers of the Hudson Valley. Made from Louisiana blackstrap molasses and aged in a combination of new and former whiskey casks of American oak, this rum is rich and flavorful and has been compared to Cognac in its overall demeanor. The Roggen brothers emigrated to the Hudson Valley from Switzerland and opened a mercantile that serviced communities up and down the river trading in various commodities including rum. Each bottle sold generates a donation to the Huguenot Historical Society.

In addition to that, the label for this rum is based on the original bill of lading from the Roggen brothers’ mercantile, which was reproduced with the help/permission of the Huguenot Historical Society, according to Don, our sales representative for Tuthilltown Spirits.

And with all that said, it’s time to taste this rum; but first, here are some specifics.

Stats

Packaging: 750ml bottle

Alchol content: 40% (80 proof)

Price: $38.99 + tax

Aging: Aged in new and former whiskey casks; no age statement.

Appearance

This rum is a slightly cloudy deep golden color; on the glass, its legs are numerous and move at a moderate pace.

Aroma

Charred oak, butterscotch, black peppercorns, and a hint of apple pie spice.

Taste

Okay – when I said it was “time to taste this rum,” I half lied. I’ve tasted this many times before, so what I meant was, it’s time to enjoy a hefty pour of one of my favorite spirits. When I first tasted Roggen’s Rum, I could have mistaken it for a bourbon – whiskey barrel aging imparts a very whiskey-like taste to this spirit. The molasses, however, delivers a pleasant musty sharpness that you could either associate with rum, or, as Tuthilltown Spirits suggested, Cognac. This is nowhere near as sweet as many of the South/Central American and Carribean rums I’ve tasted. Tasting notes include charred oak, red pepper flakes, grape must, and burnt sugar, with an incredibly long, oaky finish.

Final Thoughts

I have yet to try a product from Tuthilltown Spirits that I wasn’t impressed with – I even love their vodkas, and I am not normally the biggest vodka fan. This is a rum for a diehard bourbon drinker – it’s dry, smoky, and spicy, and at 80 proof, it’s not too fiery to drink neat. While I personally prefer it on its own (or with a cigar), I have a feeling it would do wonders for a Suburban.

The Weekly Cuvée, Volume 2

It’s time for another edition of the Weekly Cuvée! Sure, it’s been 2 weeks since the last edition, but that just means we have a lot more to talk about this time around. For anyone who missed the last one, the Weekly Cuvée is our (semi-) weekly wine and spirits news roundup. So without further ado, here’s what’s been going on in the wine and spirits world as of late.

Photograph by Gerard Prins

Photograph by Gerard Prins

First off, Great Northwest Wine reports that the 2013 Washington State grape harvest brought in upwards of 220,000 tons of grapes, shattering the previous record of 188,000 tons in 2012.  This significant increase in tonnage is due to the large number of new vineyards in Washington. “We’re not seeing any big surprises as far as yields being up or down,” Kevin Corliss, vineyard operations director for Ste. Michelle Wine estates, told Great Northwest Wine. Corliss added that Merlot and Syrah yields were a little better than they predicted, while Cabernet Sauvignon fell behind slightly.

Back in New York, Sen. Charles Schumer recently announced his support of a proposal to remove a Prohibition-era law banning the shipment of alcohol through the United States Postal Service, according to USA Today. Currently, the shipment of beer, wine, and liquor is restricted to private shipping companies – the new law would only allow federally licensed breweries, wineries, and distilleries to ship via the USPS. According to Schumer, removal of the law could bring an estimated $225 million to the struggling Postal Service.

And now for some global news – some of you may have heard the recent rumors of a worldwide wine shortage. Thankfully, experts have rebuked these rumors, according to an SFGate article. While a report from MorganStanley claimed the world’s wine demand surpassed supply by around 300 million cases in 2012, analysts say wine production has “increased significantly” while “consumption is stabilizing.” So while we, of all people, are not going to tell you not to stock up (we have great case discounts!), we will say that it’s probably not necessary to panic.

Finally, three whiskeys we love (and carry!) have made it on Wine Enthusiast’s list of 7 Must-Try New York Whiskeys. While we’re glad Catskill Distilling Company‘s Defiant Rye Whiskey, Tuthilltown Spirits‘ Hudson New York Corn Whiskey, and Warwick Valley Winery & Distillery‘s Black Dirt Bourbon all made the list, we find it a bit surprising that there was no mention of the Widow Jane Bourbon Whiskey. Regardless, it’s nice to see some New York State spirits featured in a publication as prominent as Wine Enthusiast.

And that’s it for this edition of the Weekly Cuvée – check back next week for our very first wine review, and be sure to ‘like’ us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter if you haven’t already!

Got a suggestion for our next review? Feel free to leave it in a comment!

A little about us

Our storefront in the Stone Ridge Towne Centre.

Welcome to the official blog of Stone Ridge Wine & Spirits! Here we’ll be posting weekly wine reviews, along with news, tips, and features. Since this is our inaugural post, we’d like to take a minute to tell you a bit about ourselves.

Located in the heart of Stone Ridge, NY, Stone Ridge Wine & Spirits has retailed fine wines and liquors for nearly two decades. We feature wines from all across the globe, including France, Spain, Italy, Portugal, and the USA, as well as Chile, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and more, ranging in price from affordable to extravagant. We also have an impressive selection of spirits, many of which are distilled right here in the Hudson Valley.

If you’re looking for organic products, look no further – we carry many organic wines, as well as some organic vodka, gin, and tequila.

Planning an event? Call us ahead of time and we’ll make sure you’re stocked with whatever you need. We offer excellent discounts for cases and bulk purchases.

Whether you’re an expert or a newcomer, we invite you to come by and visit our store. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff would be happy to answer any questions you might have, or just chat about the merits of corks vs. screw tops, French vs. American oak, etc. Thanks for visiting our blog – check out our Facebook and Twitter pages for daily updates!