Black Tot 1975 40 Year Old Demerara Rum
On July 31st 1970 a 300 year old Royal Naval tradition ended at precisely 6 bells in the forenoon watch when the last rum ration was issued aboard ships of the British Royal Navy. A day to be forever remembered as Black Tot Day. Original Royal Navy records confirm that the rum used for the rum ration was lost likely imported from the West Indies in oak casks by E.D. & F, Nab & Co, official rum merchants to the Navy since 1784. It was transferred into large oak marrying vats in the historic victualling warehouses of Deptford in east London, Gosport or Devonport from where it was dispatched to British Royal Naval ships.
Black Tot is a rum brand launched in 2010 by Speciality Drinks to commemorate the 40th anniversary of that event, known as "Black Tot Day."
This was produced during the early period of the nationalisation of the Guyana sugar trade by the country’s government, which saw it acquire a controlling stake in the country’s three remaining distilling companies. It managed these using a holding company called the Guyana Liquor Corporation, and its portfolio included the Diamond, Enmore, Uitvlugt and briefly, Versailles distilleries (they closed the latter in 1978). One of its first orders of business was to begin laying down stock with a view to bottlings its own brands, which it eventually did in 1992, launching its now iconic El Dorado 15 year old. In the meantime it continued distilling bulk rum for independent bottlers, resulting in a wealth of spectacular releases like this. These may contain single marque rums, or a blend of various marques from the country’s many historic stills, all of which are still in use today at Diamond, the sole remaining distillery. Known as the “heritage stills,” they are Uitvlugt’s historic four-column French Savalle stills, the Versailles and Port Mourant wooden pot stills, and the Enmore wooden coffey still, the oldest and last of its kind in the world.
Distilled in 1975, this Black Tot edition has been aged for 40 years and was bottled by Elixir Distillers of London. This was the follow-up to the company's "Last Consignment."
Originally known as Speciality Drinks, Elixir Distillers was established in 1999 as the independent bottling arm of The Whisky Exchange, which launched its online retail site the same year. Their first bottlings were under the Single Malts of Scotland label in 2005, followed by the Elements of Islay range and Port Askaig single malt brand in 2006 and 2009, respectively. The company was renamed Elixir Distillers as of 2017.
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