Brand: Hampden Estate, 8 Marks series

Origin: Hampden Estate, Wakefield, Trelawny Parish, Jamaica

Still: Pot

Age: Unaged

Finish: n/a

ABV: 60%

Well, after a full month of Jamaican hogo, we arrive at the end of the line. The final entry into the Hampden 8 Marks Collection is DOK– an abbreviation of "Dermot Owen Kelly(-Lawson)", and an absolute unit as far as ester count goes: 1,500-1,600 g/hLAA.

Incidentally, the top limit of that range corresponds to the legal limit of esters that Jamaican rum can contain. As stated in Matt Pietrek's article Why Does Jamaica Limit Its Rum to 1600 Esters?, this limit was created by the Spirits Pool Association in order to protect Jamaica's rum industry that was struggling in the early 20th century.

DOK joins just two other marques in brushing the heights of funk, with the others being Long Pond's TECC marque and New Yarmouth's NYE/WK marque. These marques are typically reserved exclusively for very light usage as flavoring agents, and often times that doesn't exclusively mean rum; such high levels of concentration can also be used in perfume and cologne, for example.

The raw materials Hampden uses for producing DOK includes high levels of cane juice vinegar, dunder, and muck are combined with medium levels of molasses and water. This is then given a 10 day alcoholic fermentation, and another 15 days of dead wash fermentation, totallying 25 days– nearly a full month– of fermentation. The 2-4% ABV wash is sent through a double retort pot still, and results in a rum that is 85.5-86.5% ABV.

Like C<>H, DOK does not have any known presence in Hampden's standalone releases, but has been made available through a few independent bottlings– yes, as the sole component in the bottle. As it's unlikely any Hampden blend will use any large amount of DOK anytime soon, having the marque to taste alongside the rest of the collection is special.


Clear, medium viscosity


Paint primer, model glue, pineapple, blueberries, rotting banana peel, caramel apple, white wine vinegar, raspberry syrup


Underripe pineapple, bubblegum, white wine vinegar, rotting banana, raspberries, sea salt, non-dairy creamer, blueberries, starfruit


Long, complex, intense; rotting banana, vinegar, grapefruit, sour green grapes, raspberries, blueberries, cocoa powder

Rating: 8/10


Predictably, DOK is completely wild, in all the meanings of the word– "unrestrained", "going beyond conventional bounds", "without regulation or control". Simply pouring a small amount fills the entire room up with the aroma of high ester goodness.

Paint primer, model glue, and vinegar bring some tart and industrial notes, alongside the barrage of tropical fruits. Nosing and tasting the rum brings an absolute barrage of these fruits, making it pretty difficult to parse individual flavors.

DOK is a fun pour as far as trying an individual flavoring component, and one that is at the literal legal limit of funkiness. As a standalone rum, this is pretty overbearing and not the easiest to drink in even modest quantities. Still, as said earlier, it's always a special treat to try one of the elusive max ester marques from a premier Jamaican distillery.

Thank you for joining me throughout the 8 Marks Month! We made it all the way from the lightest marque to the wildest, most unbridled rum allowed. Cheers!

Further Reading