Brand: Foursquare, Exceptional Cask Selection series

Origin: Foursquare, St. Philip, Barbados

Still: Pot & Column Blend

Age: 10 years

Finish: ex-Bourbon & ex-Port

ABV: 51%

In mid-2020, absolutely nothing was happening in the world, the supply chain was reliable, and no one had any free time or disposable income. Okay, that's not entirely accurate: Richard Seale was preparing the release of Détente, the 14th release in Foursquare's Exceptional Cask Selections series.

Hot on the heals of the 12 year 2008 vintage release, Détente ("the easing of hostility or strained relations, especially between countries") was the first major release after an uneventful Spring and Summer, which is likely why it garnered so much attention.

Détente is a blend of 2 pot and column still rums that were distilled in 2010: one was aged entirely in ex-Bourbon casks, while the other was matured for 4 years in ex-Bourbon casks, with the remaining 6 years spent in ex-Port wine casks. It was bottled just over proof, at a strength of 51% ABV; as a "red label" ECS release, this is relatively high, compared to the other bottles that range from mid to high 40 percents.


Orange brown, medium clarity, medium-low viscosity


Dried apricots, vanilla, caramel, permanent marker, cranberries, rye bread


Vanilla, cranberries, black cherry & chocolate chip ice cream, oak


Medium, fruity, oaky; oak, tangerine skin, cherry, vanilla

Rating: 6/10


While Détente has its cult following due to it being the sole Port cask-matured ECS bottle aside from the favored Port Cask Expression, I feel like this is just fine for me. It's nice that it's a "red label" ECS that's over-proof which helps, I think, but to me the fruit notes are just a little shy.

That isn't to say this isn't a good pour: it's apricot, cranberry, and black cherry ice cream notes are detectable amidst the other common Foursquare notes, the proof keeps things interesting, and the overall experience is pleasant and well-constructed. It is certainly enjoyable, but sits at the middle of the pack for me in relation to other ECS releases.

Further Reading