Brand: Privateer

Origin: Privateer Distilling, Ipswich, MA, USA

Still: Pot/Column Hybrid

Age: 2 years, 8 months

Finish: ex-Rum

ABV: 57.9%

After a month of escalating funk, we turn our gaze away from the Caribbean and towards Massachusetts. Of Privateer's core rum product line, the Queen's Share expression stands out to me, as its name doesn't reference the nautical traditions of New England. Instead, it's a reference to the finest spirits produced by a distillery, and those that may have been reserved for royalty in bygone eras.

Queen's Share rum is crafted by employing a style of distilling traditionally used in the production of cognac. Of the typical three cuts of distillation– heads, hearts, and tails– the hearts contain the majority of the usable alcohol a spirit is comprised of, while the tails may contain some valuable ends of the hearts, but mostly bitter and unwanted alcohol.

However, a fourth cut can be made to get the usable parts of the tails, which can then be collected and redistilled with others– known as "seconds", to get a rich spirit that "unlocks" these otherwise discarded elements.

Privateer's Queen's Share utilizes this technique, capturing seconds from a number of runs, then redistilling them to produce the resulting rum expression. These are then casked in a variety of barrel types and then released as single barrel bottlings. For cask P168, the distillate was placed in an ex-rum barrel previously used by Privateer, and aged for 2 years and 8 months, before being bottled at a strength of 57.9% ABV.


Gold, high clarity, low viscosity


Butterscotch, oak, ethanol, vanilla, prunes


Vanilla, butterscotch, shortbread, touch of smoke, golden raisins


Long, warming, dry; oak, vanilla, salted pecans, hint of star anise

Rating: 6/10


Queen's Share P168 echoes other Privateer rums I've tried before, but does bring a little something different to the table. The character of this rum is a bit lighter yet richer, though that doesn't save it from having some drawbacks as well.

The color in the glass is a pleasant gold, and offers a modest nose of butterscotch, oak, vanilla, and prunes. Tasting yields additional notes of vanilla, shortbread, golden raisins, and a touch of smoke; I can definitely connect some of these notes to the ex-rum cask, as this is similar to another Privateer release that shares that type of aging vessel. The finish is long, plenty warming, and ends the experience with oak, a hint of star anise, and heaps of salted pecans.

This isn't my favorite Privateer expression, but I like that this utilizes a lesser-used distilling technique, and bringing that to the rum category. That said, as a single cask rum, I'm interested to see if there are other iterations of this style that speak to me more.

Further Reading