Black Gold: Mount Gay’s Black Barrel Rum

May 13, 2013

Words by Jesse Serwer—


Mount Gay Rum, as you may already know, is the oldest documented rum producer in the world. The “Rum that Invented Rum” has operated continuously out of Barbados since—at least—1703.

To celebrate its 310th anniversary (not the roundest number in the world, but when you’re the oldest rum in the world who needs those to celebrate?) Mount Gay has issued a new, handcrafted, small-batch edition called Black Barrel. The draw with Black Barrel is its combination of exclusivity and affordability—while each bottle is numbered, it retails for just about $30—and the process. It’s matured in charred oak barrels formerly used to age bourbon—hence the name—imbuing it with a spicy, yet balanced taste.

We had a chance to sample some of the stuff, both straight and in a Manhattan (2 oz. Black Barrel; 1/2 oz. of sweet vermouth; two to three dashes of bitters) at the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival last month and were summarily impressed. Admittedly, our recollection of that day has been somewhat impaired. So, for a more detailed description of Black Barrel’s attributes, we’d like to refer you over to Uncommon Caribbean and their breakdown of its flavors and scents.

While you’re over there, familiarize yourself with Uncommon Caribbean’s weekly Friday Happy Hour series, spotlighting the best of the best in island drinking—yours truly will be contributing guest columns in that space over the coming weeks.

Mount Gay Rum