Foursquare Exceptional Cask Selection XX: “Isonomy”

Country: Barbados
ABV: 58%
Cost at Time of Purchase: £75
Type of Rum: Single Blended Rum
– B * (See End)

Foursquare Exceptional Cask Selection XX Isonomy:
“Equality under the law”

Another month, another Foursquare release to chase. But when that chase is over and a prized bottle or two of liquid gold is obtained, that leads to the obligatory Foursquare admiration aka a review.

So, first of all, here are the specs and stats for this bottling. This is edition number 20 (XX) in the Exceptional Cask Selection (ECS) of Foursquare rums. This 100% tropically-aged Barbadian rum has spent 17 long years sitting in ex-Bourbon American white oak casks and is the oldest official distillery release to date. Some older Foursquare rums have been released by third-party independent bottlers and also by St. Nicholas Abbey.

There is a blend of heavy and light rums from a blend of batch/pot distillation and continuous/column distillation and it is presented at a mouth-watering 58% ABV. The purple label text depicts this being an over 12-year old ex-Bourbon-aged rum (non-vintage) following on from Nobiliary and Shibboleth.

Here is my usual, but nevertheless, very important statement – this is rum as it should be – no added sweeteners or wines and non-chill filtered. It is 100% tropically aged at Foursquare Distillery in Barbados.

Foursquare Exceptional Cask Selection XX: “Isonomy”
is a Single Blended Rum:
A blend of pot still and traditional column still.

As expected, Isonomy measured 58% with my hydrometer, implying no added sugars/wines etc. are present.

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

Tasting Notes:

Isonomy is medium-amber in the glass.

The aroma is initially dominated by that familiar Foursquare-varnish, which is tempered somewhat by burnt caramel and peppery oak. Sweetness follows, with vanilla and coconut joined by fresh fruit notes of green bananas, acidic unripe pineapple and red cherries as well as some dried fruits too. As the oak influence grows after time in the glass, star anise and allspice are evident.

The entry is sweet with burnt caramel. A hint of bitterness from the 17 years of oak ageing, Isonomy drifts from sweet to bitter and back again. It has a creamy texture and a fruity influence (bananas), also noted in the aromas, as well as peaches and red cherries.

Through the mid-palate and the acidity from the pineapple is apparent – it makes my mouth water. The creamy entry gives way to a heavier mouthfeel at this point as the peppery oak and spices develop on the palate.

Towards the rear of the mouth and the peppery warmth from that 58% ABV dominates. With time and a couple of drops of water, Isonomy opens up and those warming notes are joined by allspice, star anise and dried fruits.

There is a long and persistent after taste and finish. Sweet caramel, black pepper and a touch of acidity.

Total Mark: 87 (Out of 100)


Value: 10/10

Foursquare rums are always great value. I think ECS bottlings represent some of the finest rums in the world and are always at very keen prices.

Flavour Profile:

Links / Notes:

Foursquare Exceptional Cask Selection XX: “Isonomy” is released on September 9th 2022 in the UK.

At present and somewhat unusually, we do not have info on forthcoming Foursquare releases. I expect to see ECS XXI or XXII to be a vintage one, probably “2010” but this is just speculation at this time.

I have a new independent bottling of a Foursquare release – a 20 year old pure pot still at 50% ABV. It is 100% continentally aged sadly, but is a great rum – it might make an appearance here, soon.

Elsewhere, I have recently purchased some great SBS releases (Brazil, Antigua and French Antilles) and I have an interesting white rum from El Salvador, all of which I hope to review at some point.

Away from, I have just started doing a WSET wine course and am starting a WSET Level 2 Spirits course in October – wish me luck!

Thank you for reading and for your support.

Review No: 176

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.

Foursquare Elysium
Foursquare Sovereignty
Foursquare Isonomy
Foursquare Elysium Review
Foursquare Private Cask Selection
The Whisky Exchange
The Whisky Exchange Foursquare Elysium
Hydrometer Test

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