To make its Caribbean Cask, the good folks at Balvenie took 14-year-old whisky matured in traditional oak casks and finished it in casks that had been custom-filled with a blend of Caribbean rums selected by malt master David C. Stewart. The result is rich, sweet, and fruity, with plenty of vanilla and a touch of spice.
At Stranahan’s Distillery in Denver, Colorado, master distiller Rob Dietrich says he’s particularly excited about rum casks, and 2017’s limited-edition Snowflake release showed off that excitement in spades. The blend includes three different rum casks, along with Cognac, Madeira, sangiovese, and Port.
Balcones Texas Single Malt
In Waco, Texas, Balcones Distillery uses the emptied casks from its Texas Rum to make an annual limited-edition release of Texas Single Malt Rum Cask Finish. It’s bottled at cask strength and shows off notes of peanut brittle, tropical fruits, and sweet tea.
Angel’s Envy Rye finished in Rum Barrels
Building on its smash-hit port-finished bourbon, Angel’s Envy Rye finished in Rum Barrels spends six years maturing in new charred oak casks, followed by a beauty rest in Caribbean rum casks selected by the distilling team. “We sourced and sampled more than 100 different rums before choosing one with extraordinary richness that perfectly marries with our rye whiskey,” late master distiller Lincoln Henderson said.
Tullamore D.E.W. XO Caribbean Rum Finish
Just introduced in October 2017, Tullamore D.E.W. XO Caribbean Rum Finish is a blend of Irish pot still, malt, and grain whiskeys finished in first-fill XO rum casks. Fruity and tropical, it’s got notes of bananas and dates plus plenty of sweet caramel.
Barrell Tale of Two Islands
Barrell Craft Spirits flips the rum-finished whiskey genre on its head with this most unusual of offerings, a funky Jamaican rum finished in Islay whisky casks. It’s a big, bold, unusual combination of peat and esters that sounds weird, but somehow works.