Goslings Black Seal Rum
Goslings Black Seal is a dark rum from Bermuda and has been around since 1858. The distillery itself was founded over 50years previously in 1806 by a chap called James Gosling (An Englishman I believe) and as far as I know is still owned by the Goslings family. The distillery is still going strong and currently produce three excellent products (well, there are others but they are special editions, etc.)
- Goslings Gold Seal
- Goslings Black Seal
- Goslings Family Reserve
The other couple of products are Black seal but at different proofs (strengths) such as Black Seal 151 proof.
Goslings is somewhat different to most other spirits in when it's being distilled as they distill their spirit in both Continuous Stills and Copper Pot Stills. Continuous stills are tall, column-like stills that, as the name suggests, can run continuously, whereas the Copper Pot Stills (rounder, dumpy stills) are operated with batches of spirit.
Rum is essentially the product of extracting some use from the waste material of sugar cane. Technically rum has to come from the Rum Belt (which includes the Caribbean, Guatemala, plenty of South America and lots of other little islands) but is made all over the world in places as far fetched as Glasgow and Belgium.
Rum, like Whisky and Tequila, has a wide range of ages, flavours and colours:
- Cuban/Latin style rums tend to be very light and delicate (e.g. Bacardi).
- Rhum Agricole is a French style of Rum that is made on the French Caribbean islands and is made from pressed sugar cane juice rather than molasses (e.g. Barbancourt).
- Demerara rums are quite soft, medium bodied and all come from the same part of South America - Guyana (e.g. El Dorado).
- Barbados rums are all easy drinking, smooth rums that tend to be a nice introduction to the world of rum drinking (e.g. Mount Gay).
- Jamaican rums are the heavy hitters. Pungent, fruity rums with bags of character and individuality (e.g. Appleton Estate).
Tasting notes are quite personal things as everybody's palette is slightly different. What tastes like a wonderfully rich, peaty Malt Whisky to me might taste like TCP to you...
As the name suggests this rum is very dark, almost black. When looking at the colour of a drink hold a white piece of paper behind the glass and have a light on in the background.
When nosing Goslings Black Seal I get the wonderful richness that I associate with dark rums. Sweet stewed fruits, syrupy plums, a hint of treacle then the spiciness of cumin and a warm, herby smell - probably something like asafoetida. All in all, a very complex nose.
A good tip for when nosing drinks is to smell the back of your hand when changing between drinks. This action cleanses the palette ensuring that there is little residual smell from the previous spirit or otherwise in your nose.
The taste is considerably more delicate than what you might think - considering the fact that it's a very dark, rich smelling liquid. I pick up on the pudding theme again, sweet, rich, stewed fruits but with a gentleness that fills your mouth and isn't overpowering. A few cubes of ice and a good squeeze of fresh lime reduces the sweetness and makes for a lovely sipper.
Try tasting the rum on its own, with a splash of water, with some ice or with a dash of ginger beer or ginger ale. Each different way of serving releases different smells and tastes that are difficult to pick up on when only tasting on it's own.
The finish brings those notes of cumin and asafoetida from the nose and leaves a very clean, fresh spiciness. If you've aded a squeeze of lime the tartness and acidity add to the spiciness but also cleans your palette.
-Dark and Stormy-
2 Measures of Goslings Black Seal
This is 'the' classic dark rum cocktail and was originally made with this very rum. Excellent. Stick some rum, a few squeezes of fresh lime and some ginger beer in a nice tall, ice filled glass.
This is a classic rum cocktail and brings out the individual flavours of the rum but removes the harshness of the alcohol itself. If you enjoy the flavours of a rum but find drinking it neat a bit overpowering then try a treacle before you fill the glass with coke...
2 Measures Goslings Black Seal
Fresh pressed apple juice
Chilled Rocks glass (Short)
Put a few ice cubes in the glass with a few drops of bitters, the first measure of rum and some sugar syrup. Stir with a bar spoon. As you are stirring gradually add ice cubes, one after another, ensuring the glass stays cold and that the spirit is continually moving. Add the second measure of rum, some more ice and, if needed, a little more sugar. Stir as before and when the glass is full of ice - providing you are happy with the flavour - top up with the apple juice. It should only require the merest splash of apple. Garnish with a tiered apple wedge.
Variations on the theme are nice. Some people stir in a piece of orange rind from the beginning, some add a little chocolate liquor...
If you want any cocktail suggestions or ideas feel free to send me a message.
I've seen bottles of Goslings for less than £12 in the big supermarkets which is an absolute bargain! That sai, in your local off license I'd expect to pay around £15.
Well, for the money, I don't think there is a better, readily available, dark rum on the market. It makes the worlds best Dark n Stormy and tastes sublime on its own. If you try it and you like it then keep an eye out for its big brother - Goslings Family Reserve - it's quite simply stunning.
As a side note, if you are a fan of rum and are interested in reading about what the world has to offer then pick up a copy of Dave Broom's book - Rum. Full of highly useful rum related information!
Brand: Goslings / Type: Rum