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Admiral Vernon's Old J Spiced Rum E-mail
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Wednesday, 15 August 2012 06:00

“It’s all about the joys of sweet, limey vanilla rum” 

Admiral Vernons Old J SpicedThis is a spirit drink made with rum that really doesn’t need a lot of back story, subplots, manufacturers history etc – it’s a rum (*) that’s been created to fulfil a very specific need: to fill the vacuum left by a flavour change in a rather popular spiced rum brand.

(*) Because of the ABV not being high enough to technically call itself a rum – I should call this a “Spirit drink made with rum” – however that really is a mouthful and so for the purposes of the rest of this article I’m going to call Old J “rum” -  life’s too short otherwise…

I like the fact that the bottle tells you a lot without actually saying what everyone is thinking. I like the fact that it’s unashamedly exactly what is says on the bottle and I’m also amazed it’s taken someone this long to come up with a rum that tastes this way.

Yes ladies and gentlemen: this is Admiral Vernon's Old J Spiced rum!

The bottle label is priceless – “Old J” and “The Original Taste” and “You Asked For It” prominently displayed and the observant viewer will notice that this spiced rum has specifically been flavoured with Persian Lime and Vanilla.  The statement “You Asked For It” is particularly interesting as anyone brave enough to finish reading one of my articles might notice a Most Read box on the left near the bottom of the page.  The top story (in terms of page reads) is “Petition against Sailor Jerry’s new Recipe!”, an opportunist article quickly put together to capture the spirit of the moment – a veritable storm of protest against the flavour change that provoked some faintly ridiculous comments, but certainly reflected the uproar caused by a large and devoted fan base suddenly being denied the their rum of choice.  The “Petition…” article has had over 10,000 page reads and is comfortably a long way ahead of the second placed article.

Admiral Vernons Old J SpicedI’ve been saying for a long time that I’m surprised that someone hasn’t taken the opportunity to capitalise on the void left by the flavour change.  I’m also here to state that a lot of the messages we’ve had in the years since have been along the lines of “what would you recommend to replace…” etc.  We’ve also seen a lot of press releases claiming that their spiced rum is the successor to the crown.  They aren’t of course – everything I’ve tasted since has been different enough to old formula Sailor Jerry to not really come close.

So anyway, we thought it must be time to get out our bottle of old Sailor Jerry for a comparative tasting…

We only had about 50ml of old Sailor left, unless of course you count the two un-opened bottles stashed away, but I’m not opening one of them just for a tasting, so we resolved to be careful.

Details: Old J is 35%ABV, whilst the old formula Sailor Jerry was 40%ABV.

Appearance: Old J is a lighter colour than its influence.  Bright and attractive though.

Nose: Remarkably similar – there’s no questioning the flavourings.  I left a glass of each covered with cling film for a while and when uncovered, there was no difference at all.  However, I will concede that when first poured, Old J definitely smelt less ‘rummy’ – hardly surprising given the ABV difference, but then again we don’t know the origins of the rum in either bottle and so we could have been comparing apples and oranges (metaphorically).

Taste: Remarkably similar again.  The lower ABV is more noticeable now – the flavourings are dominant of course, but once again it’s not quite as ‘rummy’ – very light onto the tongue initally, but builds up well.  Don’t get me wrong I think this will please a lot of people, but in reality the lower ABV is something of a weakness here.  The mouth feel is different again – Old J feels a bit like you are drinking a light simple syrup.

We mixed some with coke and found it to be the right kind of confectionary flavour that’s likely to be a real winner.

So why the lower ABV?  I’m guessing it’s to help control the costs – a lower ABV will attract lower taxes from HMRC.  A lower retail price, but with a better margin perhaps?  It also seems to be a trend – Captain Morgan Spiced and Bacardi Oakheart are all spirit drinks made with rum, so I guess that Old J is in good company.  At time of publication you can buy a bottle of Old J on TheDrinkShop.com for £18.95

So this is it guy’s – you’ve been asking for it and here it is at last: if you’re a fan of the old formula Sailor Jerry and you are still wandering, lost in the rum wilderness, looking for a replacement, then look no further than Admiral Vernon’s Old J.

If you don’t want to rush out and spend £20 without trying it – then Old J will be at this year’s RumFest.


Keep up with Old J on social media: http://www.facebook.com/Oldjspicedrum http://twitter.com/oldjspicedrum


Admiral Vernons Old J Spiced 



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