Versailles 1985 Moon Import Sherry Wood
An independent bottling of Versailles rum from Moon Import, distilled at Enmore in 1985.
Moon Import was founded by Pepi Mongiardino in 1980. Although primarily concerned with the distribution and bottling of single malt, the company has released some spectacular rum as well. While the new owners of companies like Samaroli and Silver Seal have placed a greater emphasis on rum in 21st century, Mongiardino was an early advocate of the spirit, particularly Demerara rum and the Moon IMport catalogue routinely featured a number of what are now very special bottles. Always beautifully labelled, Pepi is acclaimed for designing the packaging for Moon Import bottles himself, often using images found in old books. These iconic designs, coupled with the quality of the liquid saw Moon Import steadily grow in popularity, and with the help of Intertrade founder, Nadi Fiori, they exported their first bottles to Japan in 2001.
This is labelled in the same style as Mongiardino's inaugural "Half Moon" collection from the early 1980s.
The Enmore sugar estate was established by Edward Henry Porter in the early 19th century after he inherited and converted his father’s cotton plantation on the east bank of the Demerara river. Once one of many in the area, by the time the government in Guyana had begun to nationalise and consolidate the country’s rum production in 1974, it was one of only four remaining. The traditional still at Enmore was the historic two-column wooden coffey still, constructed back in 1880 and modelled almost exactly after the first continuous still patented by Aeneas Coffey in 1832. This however was distilled on the Versailles single wooden pot still, moved to Enmore from its eponymous distillery after its closure in 1974. It is constructed from Greenheart wood, which is native to Guyana and is mostly used in boat-building due to its ability to remain strong while constantly wet. The wood is also well suited to distilling, stripping spirit of sulphites in the same manner that copper does. Enmore was eventually closed by Demerara Distillers in 1994, and both stills were moved to Uitvlugt. Today they remain operational as the “Heritage Stills” at Diamond, the only remaining distillery in the country.