MOUNT GAY’S RAREST AND MOST REVERED RUM IS HUBRIS AND HARMONY IN BLISSFUL SYNERGY
BY EVAN MONROE
Mount Gay Distilleries has announced the release of the rarest and most revered rum in its 314 years of operation: this year’s 1703 Master Select—a blend that features copper column and copper pot rums from Mount Gay’s longest-held reserves (10 to 30 years old), hand-picked by Master Blender Allen Smith. The innovator of some of the maker’s newest and most popular products, including Black Barrel, XO Cask Strength, and Vol.1 and Vol.2 of the Mount Gay’s Origin Series Collection, Smith pulled out all stops for his Master series. Matured in toasted oak barrels, just one batch of 12,000 bottles will be offered…selected, bottled, and labeled by hand.
“The most important ingredient here is time,” said Smith. “We spend years monitoring our rarest barrels to achieve a perfect balance of avors. When it all comes together, the taste is worth the wait, but once it’s gone it’s gone, and you have to wait until the following year. So we recommended grabbing it as soon as you see it.”
Since its launch in 2009, the Master Select’s aromatic profile has been lauded by rum experts for its elegance and complexity, delivering a full body and smooth nish. (The name pays tribute to the maker’s rst deed, dated February 20, 1703, which legalizes a
“Pot Still House” at Mount Gay’s current distillery site in Barbados.)
Appearance is rich amber, with long legs, its taste a dance of oaky and caramel notes with a delicate but lasting nish. We’d strongly suggest not using such a wonder for late-season BBQ rum & Cokes, but instead to sip it neat, while thoughtfully admiring a sunset.
DECANT TO THE INFINITE POWER
As lovely as the 1703’s custom bottle is, for an elixir as sumptuous as this, go for Tiffany’s 26-ounce lead crystal decanter—its bold pattern evocative of the Tiffany tartan. Likewise hand carved, the 10-ounce crystal rocks glass has both real heft and brand weight. Decanter $190; glasses $45 each. tiffany.com