Uses both column and pot distilled spirits in the blends. Sugarcane juice
is used rather than molasses. Fine rum, medium-bodied and flavored.
Mount Gay is the best known brand. It is probably the world's oldest rum brand,
dating from 1663. Production dates from British planters who were aware
of the product's commercial potential. In 1670, a Captain Price planted
sugar cane on a 175 acre estate when a blight ruined his entire crop of
cocoa trees. 70 years later, in 1741, his grandson was producing 3,000 gallons
of rum yearly. By 1776, at the time of the American Revolution, his production
was up to nearly 16,000 gallons and accounted for about 14 of his estate's
revenue (the remainder coming from sugar). In the London market, it was known
as "Barbados water" and was more highly regarded, along with the Jamaican rums,
than any other rums (18 century). All Barbados rum was pot distilled until 1926
when the first continuous still was installed.
Barbadian rum makers have always retained their pot stills to give solidity
and depth of flavor to their blends. The three distilleries working today - Mount Gay,
West Indies Rum Distillery (WIRD), and Foursquare - have pot stills. WIRD also uses
an old column configuration to produce a "heavy" mark, while Foursquare does
the same by using two, rather than three, of its columns.
In the first half of the 1600’slots of English left their country to establish themselves in the USA or the West Indies. Barbados became one of the principal British colonies in competition with Jamaica for the wealth that came from trafficking slaves, commerce, tobacco and rum.
Practically everything that grew was distilled in Barbados, however the sugar cane liquor wasn’t very popular at that time. It was not only thought of as the local (and therefore poor) drink, but the colonists didn’t like the strong flavour. It was known as the Devil killer and Barbados became know as Rumbullion (hubbub, uproar) which is where the name Rum came from. The colonialists from Barbados was the first to try to improve the distillation and eliminate the impurities but not much of this heritage remains today: only three distilleries are operational today and notably at Rockney Still you can find one of the rare Barbados pot stills.
The Roskley distillery was closed a long time ago and the stills were transferred to Blackrock, the headquarters of the West Indian Rum Refinery where we can also find Mount Gay and RF. Seale the only three remaining stills on this islands. However, as in other countries such as Guyana, rum from a particular still is given the name of origin independently of where the still is situated. The old equipment, made from a mix of the three different machines, continues to distil the liquor and gives this rum its characteristic herb smells.