Archie Rose Distilling Co launches Virgin Cane Rhum this week – a rum distilled in 2016 using sustainably grown sugar cane from Condong in northern NSW.
Sydney’s first rum in decades is the third release under the Archie Rose Concepts label, reserved for the rarest and most interesting releases.
Virgin Cane Rhum was created by cutting and pressing the sugarcane into fresh juice within 12 hours with Master Distiller Dave Withers then using a specialist yeast strain to kick off fermentation ahead of the juice being transported to the distillery overnight.
The fermented wash was then triple distilled in handmade copper pot stills, producing a characterful and rich rum that expresses notes of chervil, olives, marshmallow and fresh earth, now released at a cask strength of 56.8% ABV.
The launch of this rum follows the initial release of a small batch of unaged Virgin Cane Spirit in 2016, with the richer runs of the spirit then matured in ex-bourbon American oak casks for two years and two months.
With some spirit lost due to leakage, there are now only 182 bottles available making this release very limited.
To celebrate the release Archie Rose will host a once-off masterclass on April 4, called A Journey Through Rum, outlining the history of rum up to the current day, focusing particularly on the Australian history of rum and featuring five different expressions of rum plus a cocktail on arrival.
According to Withers: “When I got into spirits it was rum that was my first true love. Back then it was a lonely passion, there were really very few rum lovers that openly admitted it in Australia. Rum in Australia gets a really bad rap and that is an absolute travesty. We not only have a history of making great rum in this country but it is part of our cultural identity.
“This release showcases the raw material. It gives you a narrative of flavour; it came from the soil, it was harvested fresh and it was matured in coastal Sydney. It evolved in the cask and became more than the sum of its parts.The magic of maturation is when you get out more than you put in.”
The new IWSR Vinexpo Report has predicted a surge in popularity for rum, with premium rum being increasingly seen as a sipping spirit similar to single malt whisky over the next three years.
Archie Rose recommends enjoying Virgin Cane Rhum neat or in the tiki cocktail of your choice, such as a Pineapple Sour.
Archie Rose Virgin Cane Rhum will be available from March 21, 2019 in limited quantities at the Archie Rose Bar, via www.archierose.com.au and at other bars around the country. RRP: $199 700ml