Appleton Estate, the oldest sugar estate and distillery in the heart of Jamaica's sugar cane belt, has been producing top-quality rums since at least 1749.
While harvesting machines are mainly used today, some sugar cane plants on the estate are still harvested the old-fashioned way — by men wielding machetes.
Appleton Estate Reserve Blend is a non-vintage blend of 20 aged rums hand-selected by Master Blender Joy Spence, the first female to earn such a lofty title in the rum industry. While some of the components — called marks of rum — were pot-stilled and others were column-stilled, each of them has been aged a minimum of eight years in oak barrels.
The Reserve is darker than the flagship Appleton Estate Signature Blend, which has a honeyed aroma. The sweetness carries over to the palate, where the satiny-smooth beverage also yields notes of tobacco. The complex, 80-proof drink has a flavor that grows on us; the more we taste, the more we enjoy it.
While some rums are so fine that to add anything to them but an ice cube would be considered an affront (such as Appleton Estate 21 Year Old Jamaica Rum), Spence enjoys her creation with a splash of soda water. Feel free to add your favorite mixer, make a classic daiquiri, or enjoy it neat like Captain Jack Sparrow.