Brand: Transcontinental Rum Line
Origin: Beenleigh Rum Distillery, Eagleby, Queensland, Australia
Age: 6 years
Finish: ex-Bourbon & ex-Cognac
Our first review in Australia Week comes from independent bottler Transcontinental Rum Line (TCRL), who has appeared before with rums from locales that are more well-known in the rum world like Jamaica, Panama, and Barbados. With this release, TCRL brought Australian rum to a wider audience, perhaps for the first time.
Like other TCRL releases, Australia 2013 spent time maturing in different climates. The rum started its journey aging in ex-Bourbon casks for 4 years in Australia after being distilled via Beenleigh's pot still, was transported around the world to France, and finished the remaining 2 years of maturation in ex-Cognac casks.
This was bottled and released in 2020 at a strength of 48% ABV.
Copper, high clarity, low viscosity
Rich butterscotch, peanut butter & jelly sandwich, molasses, hint of flower petals
Vanilla, honey, butterscotch, rain-soaked cement, whole grain bread
Medium-long, bitter, hot, tannic; browned butter, toasted oak, cinnamon
Being 100% honest, I don't really recognize this spirit that was in the bottle I had labeled "TCRL Australia 6 year"; this does not really showcase the notes I remember from prior tastings of this rum, and frankly I wasn't sure if I was tasting rum when I poured this out. The nose does lend itself to some known Beenleigh notes, however, the palate is fairly subdued, and carries an artificial plastic note that certainly was not a part of the actual rum. That said, here's the review of what I had right in front of me.
Australia 2013 has a copper color with high clarity and low viscosity.
Rich butterscotch bursts out of the glass when nosing, and is followed by the smell of a peanut butter & jelly sandwich. Searching further, molasses can be found, as can the hint of flower petals.
The palate offers notes of vanilla, honey, and butterscotch to start off; the traditional funk that is often associated with rum distilled by Beenleigh is noticeably absent, as is any floral or honey-like elements. The flavor equivalent of the smell of rain-soaked cement is present, and whole grain bread can be tasted as well. At the middle-back palate, the plastic or freezer-burnt ice cube note that I mentioned above is present and frankly ruins the experience. This is not a feature of the original rum, so I am making the educated guess that this comes from the way I stored the re-bottled remaining amounts of the rum.
The finish is medium-long, bitter, hot, and tannic. Browned butter leads off, followed by toasted oak, and cinnamon.
I may plan to grab another bottle of Australia 2013 to taste and rewrite this review, because I don't believe this does the rum justice, knowing what notes I got when originally tasting it. However, given that to the best of my knowledge this is indeed the remaining ounces of TCRL Australia 2013 I purchased years ago, I will leave this review up, perhaps as a cautionary tale for those who are savoring their bottles to maybe try speeding up the enjoyment of them.