GRF-Impressions: What was the Highlight? Misssed anything?

The GRF 2021 is over and I’m home again.

It was a pleasure meeting so many friendly people - and meeting so many people at all again, since covid started. (Do self-test in the next couple of days, to make sure, everybody was safe.)

Let’s start this new thread to talk about our impressions.

What Rum did you like most? Which was maybe a bit disappointing? Did you miss anything?

I was really impressed by the RA Clarendon 1995. I have a few Monymusks from other vintages and I like them, but they are often a bit one-sided - too spicy or too fruity. This one was just on point. I really enjoyed the complex mix of fruit and spices, very well balanced, and for my palate smooth on 67%! Not a cheap bottling, but for the exceptional taste worth its money.

I also liked the Rumclub Hampden 2001. This is a vintage I usually don’t enjoy that much as I did and it was fairly priced too.

The C<>H from Flensburg is still closed. We’ll see if this becomes a post rum fest favorite.

I also liked the presence of all the Agricole estates, good selection, fantastic rum.

I missed other European independent bottlers. Dutch and French bottlers would have been a great addition - and a chance for those bottlers to become better known outside their home countries.


The “usual” suspects many will have on their list are definitely the Rum Club and RA bottlings alongside the special edition C<>H by Flensburg. Still a little less known is Nine Leaves by Yoshiharu Takeuchi from Japan. The new Nine Leaves Encrypted IV is a fantastic further development in the series and I just love the perfectness of his rums (which at the same time is the reason some don’t like it, because it’s just too perfect).
Besides “normal rum” I also really liked the Kōloa Kauaʻi Coffee Rum which was really like strong coffee without being too artificial or sweet.
Another highlight which isn’t bottled yet and could be tasted in the VIP tasting with Dirk Becker was the Nanny Batch 2. The first edition had a wonderful nose already but the alcohol was not so perfectly integrated that you could say it’s an easy zipper. The second edition improved a lot in this regard.


Missed the Nine Leaves at all. When I passed them at Spirit of Rum, I thought about it but never made a try. Next time, I’ll do.
I haven’t tasted the Koloa but we went to the Ron Colon and tried their overproof and the coffee one, too. That was well made, too, but for sipping a bit underwhelming.
On Sunday there were a few samples of the upcoming RA Releases and I had the chance to taste one of those. That was delicious High Ester Rum :star_struck:
And Nina brought some Sugar Cane Juice Rum Sample from Worthy Park. That was like a Martinique Rum on Steroids, a bit similar to this one:


Please tell us more about the upcoming high esther RA release.

My highlights were the “Enmore” and “Clarendon” from RA and the “Hampden <>H” from Rumclub.
And that there were still bottles of RA Fiji 2001 :slight_smile: !

Surprisingly strong was also the Karukera “L`Expression - Brut de Fut”. Extremely complex for a 1-year-old Agricole.

I missed some French bottlers, maybe next year.

In any case, there were “unfortunately” :wink: too many rums to be able to test them extensively, because you need more days…


Unfortunately, I won’t. There will be an announcement and I don’t want to spoiler that.

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So upcoming RA releases were promoted at the festival, but it is not “allowed” to share info.
Gotta love the rumscene.

Nobody forbid anything, but don’t write it in the internet as the first one :man_shrugging:

I wasn’t there, it’s just a comment but I think it’s really cool to see that festivals can finally take place again! Glad to see you were able to enjoy it.
After two cancellations, I hope that the Paris rumfest can finally take place at the beginning of April. Maybe I would even meet some of you there.

Against covid, prefer rums over 60° :grin:


In that article you can find some spoilers


Yes, an authorized spoiler

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After a few days I am still impressed of the whole weekend. Meeting so many R(h)um Enthusiasts was really a pleasure. I am really thankful that Dirk Becker and the whole team behind took the advantage and just let it happen to give all of us a big part of normality back.
Back to the Tasting side, you already mentoned my highlights at and beyond the tables :-D. i also really enjoyed the VIP and the Rum and Cheese Tasting (what a pina colada in combination!). liked the new Black Tot and the drinks with fresh sugarcane juice at Kirsch were simply fantastic. And thanks to the people @RealMCoy Corn and Oil is likely to become one of my favourite cocktails. :yum:
I am sure i missed a lot, but you can never go through all of it.
Had a great time. Thats it. Thank you all.