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Plantation 3 Stars Rum
ABOUT PLANTATION 3 STARS
This Plantation 3 Stars Rum is manufactured by Plantation Rum, a French-owned brand created by the company Maison Ferrand. Though Maison Ferrand started out specializing in Cognac, owner Alexander Gabriel soon branched out into the production of Rum after exploring various islands in the Caribbean. Today, Plantation Rum partners with distilleries in Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad, Guyana, and Panama to create its blends.
This particular blend uses 3 base rums from Barbados, Trinidad, and Jamaica – hence the name “3 star”. All made from the usual molasses, each rum included uses slightly different techniques.
The first rum hails from Barbados. It was distilled at West Indies Rum Distillery in Bridgetown. Founded in 1893, this distillery was acquired by Maison Ferrand in 2017. The particular rum used in 3 star is fermented for 72 hours, and distilled with a combination of twin column and pot still methods. It is not aged.
The second rum comes from Trinidad Distillers Limited in Trinidad. This rum is also fermented for 72 hours, distilled using a column still, and aged for 2-3 years.
The third rum in the blend is from Long Pond Distillery in Jamaica. Fermented for 2 weeks, this rum is then distilled using a John More pot still and aged for 10 years. Though this base rum is likely to be the most flavorful of the three, the description of 3 Star is careful to mention that the blend has only “a touch” of Jamaican 10-year.
❖ ABV: 41.2%
❖ Distillery: West Indies Rum Distillery, Trinidad Distillers Limited, Long Pond Distillery
❖ Aging: blend of unaged, 2-3 year, and 10 year
❖ Price Point: lower mid-range
Here are the tasting notes of this particular white rum, as described on the Plantation Rum website:
❖ Initial: brown sugar, honey, coffee bean
❖ Later: vanilla, cloves
❖ Initial: biscuity, bittersweet, light-bodied
❖ Later: dark chocolate, root beer, egg cream
❖ Finish: grassy, herbal
My tasting notes
After the first whiff of alcoholic strength, I could begin to smell the subtle notes of sweetness in the nose. On the first taste, the burning strength overpowered my throat and palate. This is fair enough – as 3 Star is specifically advertised as a cocktail spirit, and I was only drinking it straight for the sake of a thorough review. On the second and third taste, I could pick out the fresh herbal notes quite clearly. It wasn’t until the fourth sip that I could taste the sweet brown sugar notes on the roof of my mouth.
All in all, I found the flavors to be pretty biting and bitter in the absence of mixers. I’m not going to pretend to have the most sensitive palate in the world. But let’s face it – the average consumer doesn’t, either. Especially when we’re talking about a rum that is priced in such an affordable range. Listing coffee bean, cloves, dark chocolate, root beer, and egg cream in the tasting notes is a bit of a stretch. I personally didn’t taste any of these notes.
The marketing materials for Plantation 3 Stars Rum specify that this rum makes a great daiquiri – so, of course, I had to choose this classic drink when making my cocktail. The ingredients are pretty standard, although different bartenders will give you different ratios when you ask for the recipe. I prefer to go light on the mixers, with equal parts sweet and sour.
❖ 2 oz white rum
❖ 3/4 oz lime juice
❖ 3/4 oz simple syrup
Add ingredients into a shaker with ice and shake until chilled.
Strain mixture into a cocktail glass.
Garnish with a slice of lime if desired.
The results of this cocktail were pleasing. This is where the 3 Star Plantation really shines. This rum is well balanced for cocktails, as we would expect from the careful blending of column still and pot still rums. It has enough clarity so that the cocktail isn’t too biting, but at the same time adds nice depth and character to the flavors of the lime and sugar.
Plantation 3 Stars Rum is a decent choice for folks looking for a good cocktail rum. To be honest, however, the process of looking at their website was a huge turn off for me as a consumer. The name of the brand in itself is problematic, bringing to mind the dark, exploitative history of plantations. It was the first thing I noticed when looking at the bottle, before I had gotten around to researching the company. I was prepared to let this go, until I saw that this same colonial mindset was present throughout Plantation Rum’s entire website. To see the heritage and culture of rum-making described in a way that continues to celebrate imperialism was pretty infuriating as a consumer. The lack of self-awareness truly jumped off the page! For me, 3 Star Plantation was good, but not so mind-blowing that I will purchase it again. I would prefer to support companies that align a little bit better with my personal values.
As always, drink responsibly.
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