Worthy Park WPE Habitation Velier Forsyths White 2017
Velier was founded by Casimir Chaix in Genoa in 1947 as a wine and spirits importer and distributor. By the 1980s they were still a small family-company with less than ten staff. This all changed in 1986 when it was purchased by Luca Gargano, a former brand ambassador for Saint James who was at the time still in his twenties. Under his direction, they selected their first single cask whiskies in 1992, and their first rum in 1996. In the decades that followed, Velier have gone on to become one of the most collectible brands in the industry, and Gargano has positioned them as the one of the foremost authorities and bottlers of rum anywhere in the world.
More than just a bottler of rum, Luca Gargano is considered a visionary in the cane spirits industry, even developing his own classification for different styles of rum in 2015. Many distilleries have since adopted this. Among the classifications is "pure single rum," which denotes a spirit produced on pot stills at a single distillery. This Habitation Velier range is a celebration of these rums "which best expresses the raw material and the know-how of the distiller."
This is a bottling of the distillery's highest ester mark, WPE. 2017 was the first vintage for WPE production, meaning this cask is some of the first produced, and certainly was one of the first available.
Located in the Lluidas Vale of Jamaica’s Saint Catherine parish, the Worthy Park Estate is a sprawling 100,000 acres of land, around 40% of which is dedicated to sugar cultivation. Records indicate that rum production commenced there as far back as 1741 and took place there for 220 years before the original distillery was shut down due to an oversupply of Jamaican rum following the second world war. Amazingly, in 340 years the estate has been owned by just three different families, the most recent being the Clarke’s, who bought it in 1918. Gordon, the great-grandson of the first Worth Park Clarke submitted plans for a new state of the art distillery in 2005, which produced its first spirit two years later. It produces pure single rum from its own estate molasses on its sole double-retort pot still from Forsyths in Scotland. The distillery’s first brand was titled Rum Bar, before the casks initially laid down for ageing became Worthy Park’s first official release under their own name when the Estate Reserve was announced at RumFest in 2017.