Black Tot unveils 2023 Master Blender’s edition

by Georgie Collins

Elixir Distillers-owned Black Tot Rum has released the fourth edition of its ‘perpetual' rum blend: Master Blender’s Reserve 2023.

Crafted by master blender Oliver Chilton, Master Blender’s Reserve 2023 is described as a return to the denser, ‘more traditional’ style of Black Tot 50th Anniversary Rum. Chilton commented: “With a larger focus on older rums from Guyana and the addition of 30-year-old rum from Grenada, a real sense of maturity and status has developed.” The blends in the Master Blender’s Reserve portfolio are made using a modern-day adaptation of a lost blending practice, with one third of the blend held back for another year to be blended again,­ thus creating what is called a ‘perpetual blend’, with the heart of the blend always consistent. From the early 1800s until Black Tot Day 1970, the British Navy created the 'world’s longest running perpetual rum blend'. Black Tot, reviving this technique, reintroduced it to the world in 2020 with the inaugural release of the Master Blender's Reserve. “It is such a privilege to be able to keep back stock from each blend to mature on and use as the heart of next iteration of Master Blender’s Reserve, reimagining a blending technique used for so many decades by the rum blenders of the Navy,” Chilton added. For the 2023 edition, Chilton has combined a range of rums from some of ‘the best distilleries in the world’. Casks were selected from Guyana, Trinidad, Barbados, Jamaica, and this year a rum from Grenada, distilled in 1993, was added to bring depth to the blend. These were then married with Black Tot’s perpetual reserve, Master Blender's Reserve 2022, and some original Navy Rum from 1970. Black Tot Master Blender's Reserve 2023 offers notes of chocolate, thick liquorice and toffee, with orange marmalade and cinnamon. It is bottled at navy strength of 54.5% ABV. The super-premium rum is released annually on the anniversary of Black Tot Day (31 July), which commemorates the historic event in 1970 when the British Navy discontinued the daily rum ration, a tradition that had been in place since the early 1800s. It will be available cross all channels from this date for RRP £145 (US$186).

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