Review: That Boutique-y Rum Company – Black Gate Distillery Australia 3 Year Old (Batch 1)

It has been a while since I purchased a bottle from That Boutique-y Rum Company (TBRC) which is quite unacceptable from my side because they never miss as far as I’m concerned. I decided to go with the one distilled at the Black Gate Distillery in Australia because lately I’ve been trying a lot of Beenleigh IBs (also an Australian distillery) so I wanted to see what other rum producers in the “area” have to offer – be wary, Beenleigh has set the bar pretty high!

Black Gate Distillery was established in 2009 by husband and wife, Brian Hollingworth and Genise Hollingworth, in Mendooran, New South Wales, Australia. They initially started whisky production before delving into making rum as well – Brian is in charge of the whisky while Genise makes the rum. They operate two direct fired copper pot stills with 630 litres and 300 litres capacity that produce 4000 litres of distillate annually with a quarter of it being rum. The molasses is sourced from Queensland and they make use of long fermentation for their rums.

Their current bottlings are two dark rums, one of them being labeled overproof, despite clocking at only 52% ABV – I’d be genuinely curious to try them, but I guess I’ll have to be content with my TBRC.

The TBRC Black Gate Distillery is part of the Australia Series release by That Boutique-y Whisky Company where they bottled 8 different Australian whiskies in which it looks like Peter Holland managed to sneak 2 rum releases as well making it a total of 10 Australian bottlings.

That Boutique-y Rum Company Black Gate Distillery Australia is molasses based, fermented for up to two weeks, pot still distilled and aged for 3 years in 100 litres Tawny (Port) casks. Bottled at 50% ABV with a limited number of 220 being released – mine is number 163 if you really wanted to know. As per the TBRC policy the rum is free of any additives or BS.

On the nose it feels both sweet and savoury. Toffee, walnuts, salted peanut butter, ginger biscuits, canned peaches and pink grapefruit zest. Cinnamon, pears, English Breakfast tea with a drop of milk, apricots and a touch of wasabi. Banana foams and some black pepper. Reminds me of Worthy Park to a degree.

On the palate the profile changed a bit compared with the nose. Plums, smoked almonds, cocoa nibs, maple syrup and toffee sweets. It’s sweet and smoky. Brown sugar, blackcurrant, raisins with nutmeg, fresh ginger and black pepper. On the palate is more reminiscent of a mild Hampden. Mango, English Breakfast tea, peppermint, strawberry jam and Fanta Orange. The finish is long with black olives, smoke and cocoa butter.

I was expecting good, but this was amazing. There’s a lovely balance between sweet/rich and sharp/funky with a touch of smoky and the mouthfeel is oily and warming. The price point of £66 on MoM or £61 on TWE for a 50cl bottle isn’t a bad deal at all, especially considering there are no Black Gate rums available in the UK.

That Boutique-y Rum Company – Black Gate Distillery Australia 3 Year Old (Batch 1) score:
Flavour/taste: 59/70
Value for money: 14/15
Transparency/purity: 15/15
Overall: 88/100


Leave a Reply