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Master of Malt Blog

Tag: Pot Still

New Arrival of the Week: Hampden Great House Distillery Edition

We’re getting excited about a fabulous rum this week from the Hampden Estate, one of the oldest sugar estates in Jamaica. Known for its punchy, flavourful heavy pot still rums,…

We’re getting excited about a fabulous rum this week from the Hampden Estate, one of the oldest sugar estates in Jamaica. Known for its punchy, flavourful heavy pot still rums, our new arrival this week certainly doesn’t disappoint.  

Hampden Estate has been in the business of delicious rum since  1753. Tropical fruit, funk and high ester pot still rums are the distillery’s thing. If you’re not familiar with Hampden Estate, then there’s no better place to get a feel for the distillery’s style than Hampden Great House Distillery Edition, because it was literally crafted to showcase what the distillery is renowned for.

Since 2009, the estate has been owned by the Hussey family, who are invested in preserving the traditions and values of Hampden. For example, the boiling house is covered in old wooden walkways, where fermentation takes place for up to three weeks (which is pretty darn lengthy in the fermentation game), with 89 fermentation tanks each holding between 9,000 and 13,500 litres. The distillery makes use of the unique wild yeasts that live and reproduce in the fermentation rooms. No commercial yeast to be seen here! There are four stills, which is where the magic happens. The oldest is a John Dore, from the oldest distillery engineering business in the world, installed back in 1960. The very first stocks were aged on the estate in 2010 after the acquisition by the Hussey family in 2009, and these stocks were used in the very first Hampden Estate releases.

Hampden Great House Distillery Edition

It’s Hampden Estate everyone!

Now, onto the rum! Hampden Great House Distillery Edition was created by the master distiller, blending the most representative marques (or marks) of the distillery. To get technical, this is made from a blend of tropically-aged 2012 OWH and 2016 <>H marques (all Jamaican rum distilleries make a variety of distillates, from light to heavy rums, and each batch falls within one of their marques). ‘OWH’ has an ester level of 40 to 80 gr/hL AA (grams per hectoliter of absolute alcohol), standing for ‘Outram W. Hussey’, while ‘<>H’ has an ester level of 900 to 1,000 gr/hL AA, which stands for ‘Hampden’. For perspective, the highest ester level allowed for export by Jamaican regulations is 1,600 gr/hL AA, so this one is pretty powerful stuff.

Hampden Great House Distillery Edition

The Hampden Great House Distillery Edition, looking fancy.

It’s blended with local spring water and bottled up at a burly 59% ABV, packed full of funk and flavour. The result is a truly authentic and unique Trelawny rum, full of everything we know and love from Hampden Estate. Initially, the release of 1,200 bottles was only sold at the distillery in Jamaica and at a few special events around Europe. Luckily, we got our mitts on the awesome bottle, and we’re rather big fans.

Tasting Note by The Chaps at Master of Malt

Toasted brioche, pineapple, BBQ lemon, cigar box, oily smoke and a little hint of chocolate sauce.

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Irish Whiskey – Everything You Need To Know! (Part 3)

Blimey, it’s Friday already! A Valentine’s Day Friday, no less! Well, today we only have eyes for delicious Irish Whiskey as we move onto the third and final instalment of…

Ireland

Blimey, it’s Friday already! A Valentine’s Day Friday, no less! Well, today we only have eyes for delicious Irish Whiskey as we move onto the third and final instalment of this bumper blog post.

Back at the start of Part 1, I mentioned Teeling Whiskey Company‘s recently confirmed plans to build a new distillery in Dublin, the first in 125 years. This post will cover this and many other projects that could see the number of distilleries in Ireland double, treble, or perhaps even quadruple!

First though, I’ll try to briefly run through some other news and developments, starting with the fact that in 2011 Beam Inc. bought Cooley, introducing another big player alongside the giants of Pernod Ricard and Diageo and leaving Ireland without an independent distillery once again (albeit briefly…).

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Irish Whiskey – Everything You Need To Know! (Part 2)

Yesterday, I began my serialised guide to Irish Whiskey with a rundown of its turbulent history through some difficult times, becoming the most popular spirit in the world before nearly…

Ireland

Yesterday, I began my serialised guide to Irish Whiskey with a rundown of its turbulent history through some difficult times, becoming the most popular spirit in the world before nearly disappearing altogether in the 20th century! Fortunately, it has been on a road to recovery in the last few decades and is now thriving.

Despite this resurgence, which has made Irish Whisky the fastest growing drinks category in the world, Scotch whisky still comfortably sells 15 times more cases worldwide, and has about as many times more active distilleries too. With Scotch whisky’s dominance since the 1930s, there’s perhaps understandably still some confusion, even amongst whisk(e)y enthusiasts, surrounding the styles of Irish whiskey available.

Fret not, however! In this second instalment I’ll be looking at each style in turn, complete with a number of yummy examples of each!

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