Appleton Estate 12 Year Old Rare Blend Gold Rum, 70 cl

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Appleton Estate 12 Year Old Rare Blend Gold Rum, 70 cl

Appleton Estate 12 Year Old Rare Blend Gold Rum, 70 cl

RRP: £29.11
Price: £14.555
£14.555 FREE Shipping

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Appleton Estate Extra is bottled at 43% ABV in a 70cl bottle. The first thing you notice about the Extra is the mahogany colour of the rum. The Appleton Special and V/X are a orange/brown and the Reserve is a gold colour. The Extra is much darker than all three. On the nose, the 8 Year Old Reserve is markedly more expressive and mature than the Signature, with notes of grilled pineapple, banana and ginger. There’s a more savory and slightly more wild dimension to this dram, with a greater oak presence and considerably more spice—the slight bump in proof makes itself felt in an appreciable way, lending heft to these flavors. This one strikes me as particularly fruity, with lots of pineapple, citrus and passionfruit notes, closing with a bit of supporting oak tannin. The nose also draws you in. Unlike many Jamaican rums it is not at all pungent. The Jamaican funk of lesser aged rums such as their White Overproof or the V/X is not present. It is a million miles away from the ester heavy Smith & Cross, Hampden or a Monymusk offering. It is a very nice nose. It remind me of Bajan rums and also St Vincent’s Captain Bligh XO. It has that extra little spicy nose. The nose is all rich brown sugar/molasses, dry oak tones and mix of citrus and cinnamon and ginger notes. It’s as good a nose as I have noted especially from a Jamaican rum – thus far. The taste is nice, a bit of sweetness up front with fruit and then oak and tobacco or leather. Then it settles into the heat. Appleton Estate Extra is the “Ultra Premium rum in the Appleton Estate family and it is touted as unsurpassed masterpiece of oak ageing”. Now I’m not one for re-producing a companies marketing material but I will make an exception in this instance.

I’m not sure many unfamiliar with the Extra would ever guess it was a Jamaican Rum. Having tried a few Hampden and Monymusk offerings along with blends such as Myers’s and Smith & Cross I have come to realise that by Jamaican standards the Appleton Reserve rums are quite refined and less rough and ready. Possibly slightly less in your face and a little more complex overall. Especially the Reserve and the Extra. This was clearly a good time to revisit the core range as a whole, so we commenced a tasting to do exactly that. I expected the complexity in flavors of a typical "12-year" rum, but got much more. As the rum first rolls over the taste buds, a rather strong flavor of oak and a bit of smoke dominates the senses. In this, whiskey lovers should feel right at home. A brown sugar flavor is also apparent, but even though this is a strong part of the rums nose, the sweetness in the taste is only in the middle-lower end of rums.While the Appleton Estate was cranking out rum, another Englishman named John Wray started his own business venture by founding The Shakespeare Tavern in 1825 in what was then the small village of Kingston, Jamaica. The town would eventually become the nation’s capitol, and the tavern a wild success. Wray was joined in 1860 by his nephew Charles James Ward, who proved to be an indispensable business partner, eventually earning his spot in the company name when it was changed to J. Wray and Nephew. Observations: Here we have an excellent example of rum bottled without added flavourings or sugar, as per Jamaican regulations. At 15 years old, it shows excellent maturity without too much oak influence obscuring the spirit character. The Appleton Estate 12 year is actually a blend from casks with rum between 12 and 30 years of age. Many producers would jump right at the chance to call it a 30-year rum, but not Appleton Estate. First up, when poured in the glass the rum keeps its dark rich coppery/red hue its very nice and does suggest the minimum 12 years ageing. Like most producers I’m sure a little colouring is added for consistency but the rum does look very inviting.

On the other hand, because of the orange peel and vanilla flavors, I think this rum would also excel in a variety of mixed drinks where these flavors complement. The consumer palate has become much more sophisticated. Appleton Estate’s range boasts some complex and elegant expressions, which inspire us to both educate and entertain on a higher level. This relaunch gives us the opportunity to illustrate Jamaica’s rich history and geography, as we reinvent our most iconic international brand to connect deeper with our existing consumers and appeal to new markets across the globe.”

For your money you get the signature Appleton Estate stubby curvy bottle and a very handsome and sturdy card sleeve with a metal like lid and a well done plastic label covering the whole box. The presentation is very good. The only strange thing I found is that the top is a metal screw top not a cork. Still I quibble as the screw top isn’t cheap and nasty. It’s well threaded and seals tightly. To celebrate the occasion, we’re taking a closer look at this award-winning Appleton rum, starting with the most important question of all: What does it taste like?

The Appleton Estate was founded in the Nassau Valley of Jamaica, a location with rich soil, limestone hills, and plentiful underground water sources. The plantation started creating sugar cane, and in 1749 started to produce their own rum with that sugar. In the world of rum, there are few names as well-respected as Joy Spence. Raised in Kingston and studied in chemistry, Joy joined J Wray & Nephew – the owner of Appleton Estate – in 1981. In 1997, her work and talents were recognised when she was promotion to the rank of master blender, making her the first woman across the global sprits industry to ever earn the title. She has created blends for royals and heads of state, she was instrumental in gaining GI status for Jamaican Rum, and she is involved in numerous philanthropic ventures that aid women around the world.

Who’s Behind it?

To get the full flavor experience I recommend letting it breathe in the glass for at least 5 minutes before drinking. And when drinking it, doing so in small sips so as not to overwhelm your taste buds with its stronger flavors. This is exactly what the company has done, condensing the “core” lineup into the following three bottles: Appleton Estate Signature Blend, Appleton Estate 8 Year Old Reserve, and Appleton Estate 12 Year Rare Casks. These brands re-debuted in the spring with a new bottle shape as well—taller and slimmer than the previously squat Appleton bottles, but with some of the same shapely curves. It’s a thoroughly modern approach, as indicated by this quote from Marsha Lumley, marketing director of J Wray and Nephew Limited, Appleton’s parent company (itself owned by Campari):

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