St. Nicholas Abbey 12 yo Rare “Lost Barrel 10”

Country: Barbados
ABV: 40%
Cost at Time of Purchase: $200
Type of Rum: Single Blended Rum
– B * (See End)

Contact the Lost and Found department!

St. Nicholas Abbey (SNA), artisan creators of fine traditional Barbadian rum lost a barrel of rum, originally distilled and barrelled in April 2010. Whilst doing an inventory of their rums from 2009 to the present day, they “found” this treasure (February 2022). Not only is this a precious 12 year old rum, but it was made in SNA’s early days when they used fresh cane juice for their rums. Nowadays, SNA use sugar cane honey extracted from sugar grown on their own plantation.

So, we have something of exceptional rarity here. In fact, just 130 bottles have been produced of this “Lost Barrel 10”. I have bottle number 008 that I collected in person during a fantastic visit to the Great House and distillery on 6th April 2022 – the rum was bottled the day before I visited. Initially Larry Warren of SNA was going to bottle at 58% and expected 165 bottles or so to be created. He later explained that they would “offer it at 40% ABV like our other rums which allows the more delicate flavours to be better expressed in both the nose and palate”. I believe that some of the rum has been held back, potentially for a very limited higher ABV version (TBC).

SNA Lost Cask 12yo Engraving
SNA Lost Barrel 12yo Engraving

St. Nicholas Abbey 12 yo Rare “Lost Barrel 10” is:
Single Blended Rum:
A blend of pot still and traditional column still.

As expected, St. Nicholas Abbey 12 yo Rare “Lost Barrel 10” measured 40% with my hydrometer, implying no added sugars/wines etc. are present.

Here is a link to all of my hydrometer tests:
RumShopBoy Hydrometer Tests

Tasting Notes:

Medium amber/gold in the glass.

The aroma has grassy caramel notes. Butter, cream soda, pastry-esque and grilled pineapple.

On entry, this is incredibly smooth and easy to drink, with caramel and tropical fruit notes.

The mid-palate leads to pastry-esque flavours and a build up of spicy pepper. The rum has an oily texture and further notes of green banana and bitter hay develop.

On the rear palate, there is more spicy pepper building up accompanied by a hint of ginger. Increasingly bitter notes develop to counter the initial sweet caramel, joined by high-cacao dark chocolate.

The finish is medium in length. Mouth-warming as more pepper and ginger develops joined by capsicum.

This is very different in profile to SNA’s regular 12 year old single cask offering. The Lost Cask is deeper in colour, but more opaque, too. The 12yo is sweeter and lacks the pastry-esque notes as well as being less spicy. They are very different rums!

Total Mark: 87 (Out of 100)

Overall:

Wow, this is truly exceptional – a fine example of traditional, artisanal Bajan rum.

It is very much a one-off due to the nature of having a “lost” barrel and of course the use of cane juice. But as SNA itself ages, so more and more barrel-aged craft distilled rums will become available and at greater ages, too. While at the distillery, I did also buy a 23 year old rum, although that was originally from Foursquare’s distillate. As an aside, I wonder if, outside of Richard Seal at Foursquare Distillery’s own private stocks, this is possibly the oldest/longest-aged rum from Foursquare, available to purchase. Hmmmmm, something to think about!

My distillery visit was a wonderful experience – the location is truly beautiful and is an inspiration to create such fine rums. Having seen the processes first-hand, from field-to-glass, I can truly enjoy and appreciate everything that has gone into this fine rum.

SNA Lost Cask 12yo Bottle and Box
SNA Lost Cask 12yo Bottle and Box

Value: 7/10

As with all SNA rums, this is a craft-distilled, artisanal, small batch rum, bottled by hand, in a beautiful decanter-style bottle. Expensive to produce and age over 12 years, this one-off edition is special. But with all of this comes a hefty price for a 12 year old rum.

Flavour Profile:

Links / Notes:

St. Nicholas Abbey Web-Site (Rum)

If you visit Barbados, make sure you spend a leisurely afternoon enjoying St. Nicholas Abbey. The Great House, Heritage Railway and surrounding views are all stunning and of course, you can see first-hand, how the cane is crushed, fermented, distilled and aged, before being bottled and labelled by hand.

St. Nicholas Abbey' still "Annabelle"
St. Nicholas Abbey’s still “Annabelle”


Thank you for reading and for your support.

Review No: 172

*
P Denotes the rum contains POT still distillate.
C Denotes the rum contains traditional/Coffey COLUMN still distillate.
B Denotes the rum contains a BLEND of POT and COLUMN still distillate.
M Denotes the rum contains MULTI-COLUMN still distillate or is a MODERN rum.
A Denotes the rum is an AGRICOLE i.e. from Cane Juice.
S Denotes the rum is presented in a SWEETENED style.

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