Sant Andrea 1939


Average score

Bottle Profile
Distillery Unknown
Bottler Undefined
Type Unknown
Alcohol By Volume 45%
Sugar Measured
Review 5


Review by "Lance" Score: 83

Let's go with something a little older. Perhaps a rhum from an age before ours, or even that of our fathers. Issued by the house of Fratelli Branca, which is akin to Rum Nation, Samaroli or even Velier: an old 19th century Milanese spirits maker (they created a liqueur of their own in 1845 which led to the formation of the company) and distributor, that rode the wave of "Fantasy Rhums" which were popular in Italy in the first half of the 20th century. This may be one of them - except I don't know where it originates, or how truly aged it is. There are several St. Andrews's parishes dotted around the Caribbean, and Lo Spirito dei Tempi suggested it was more a brand name than a location, since a variation with similar bottle design was issued as 'Saint Andrew's Rhum.' The Sage thought it was Jamaican, but I dunno, the profile doesn't really go there. We'll leave it unsettled for the moment - perhaps it'll remain lost in the mists of history. Colour - Dark Mahogany. (Maybe this is like the St. James 1885, and got darker with age, even in the bottle; or maybe in those days they dumped more caramel in there).

Nose: Slightly overripe darker fruit; prunes, blackberry jam, ripe blueberries. For all that colour, it presents quite light and easy going. Pears, almonds, rye bread and cream cheese develop over time.

Palate: Sharp and a little thin, settles down to a quiet heat after some minutes. Prunes, dark red grapes, chocolate, vanilla, and the sugar is obvious here. Still, not bad, if thin. A little water brings out molasses, chocolate eclairs, nougat, toffee, and more jammy notes. And some musty background, almost undetectable.

Finish: Warm, sweet, firm, a little dry. Prunes and raisins again, with some last brown sugar.

Thoughts: Thoughts - Relatively simple yet elegant, a little weak on nose and finish but mouthfeel and texture and taste can't be faulted. If it showcases anything, it's how differently rhums/rums must have been made just two generations ago...I've never had a "modern" rum quite like this. We may have gained rules and regs and consistency and safety measures (and a better idea of how rum is made) - maybe we lost a little something too.

Review by "Cyril" Score: 84

un rhum distribué par la société italienne Branca (Milan) exclusivement pour le marché italien dans les années 30 (et jusque dans les années 60). Plusieurs bouteilles ont vu le jour, certaines avec la mention St Andrew en lieu et place de St Andrea, certaines millésimées, d'autres non. cette bouteille est datée de 1939. bouteille de 1l. / 45%

Nose: Le rhum propose une couleur acajou, sombre, aux reflets cuivrés. l'allure est huileuse, même visqueuse et les jambes sont très imposantes. Au nez on retrouve de la mélasse, beaucoup de mélasse, brûlée qui donne un rhum au ton chaud relevé par des épices et des fruits secs emprisonnés (raisin) par ce mélange ; on imagine déjà le rhum visqueux en bouche. Au repos apparait du moka, du tabac, de la réglisse et quelques fruits rouges pour un nez résolument chaud et grillé (empyreumatique).

Palate: A l'attaque c'est gras, on retrouve la mélasse, les épices et le fruité (cerises), sucré et agréable ; Arrive ensuite de la réglisse et du tabac, et encore ces épices pour une bouche bien structurée et équilibré, fondue. C'est concentré mais élégant malgré les apparences.

Finish: La fin de bouche n'est pas très longue mais la persistance en bouche impressionne. principalement sur les mêmes notes et saveurs qu'en bouche avec cette réglisse et des feuilles de tabac qui asséchent légérement la bouche en sortie, mais toujours avec un bel équilibre, et une certaine élégance.

Thoughts: Une belle surprise, pour un rhum bien concentré et charpenté mais avec de l'élégance et surtout bien équilibré.

Review by "Serge" Score: 82

Rhum Saint Andrew (45%, Fratelli Branca, Italy, 1l, 1939) Pre-WWII rhum, so most probably from the French West Indies, bottled in Italy by the famous Branca family, of Fernet-Branca fame. Lovely bottle, very dark colour! Colour: coffee. And I mean Italian espresso!

Nose: Rich, packed with spicy and polished oak and crammed with stewed dark fruits and candy sugar. A lot of burnt sugar and caramel, but its not exactly caramelly. I also find touches of caraway, nutmeg, cinnamon cake, brownie, blueberry pie... And coffee indeed. Dark style rhum, but not of the ‘navy’ style at all.

Palate: That someone would’ve added brandy to this wouldn’t surprise me. Very raisiny arrival, with also prunes, then muscovado sugar, Corinthian raisins, mocha and black chocolate. You may add a slice of Christmas cake, and in a way, we’re a bit in Macallan Gran Reserva territories. High quality ‘sherried’ rhum. Hey, yeah, haven’t they added sherry?

Finish: Medium, rather dry. Unsweetened coffee, old walnuts, bitter chocolate, burnt caramel. The aftertaste is faintly drying.

Thoughts: What’s sure is that this was rhum of high quality, perhaps not agricole having said that, and perhaps not ‘only rhum’… But quality’s pretty high, no doubt about that.

Review by "Marco" Score: 87

No information about the age or origin of this rum. Only the importer “S.A. Fratelli Branca” in Milan. The content could come from any place within in the Caribbean. Very nebulous. Colour: Deep red amber.

Nose: I smell subtle exotic fruits, topped by nutty flavors and interwoven with weak oak. There is even leather and toffee. This rum is similar to the St. James 1885, just a little, but has not its blatant and extraordinary fruit flavours. Very weak and more in the background of the odor profile I smell iodine and plum compote. The nose is very complex and difficult.

Palate: A pleasant sweetness is flooding the mouth. Then quickly oak flavours from the barrel, cinnamon and toffee are following. The fruit is at the beginning very strong. After a few seconds you can taste bitter and slightly buttery notes. After an eternity in the mouth you now taste a faint bitterness. For this purpose it is necessary to leave the rum very long in the mouth though. Most connoisseurs will not do that anyway.

Finish: Buttery aromas followed by tart flavors and herbs and spices such as cinnamon form the beginning of the finish. It is minimal bitter again. No sweetness.

Thoughts: A very old rum, which was for liquid perfection a little too long in the barrel, but the barrel influence is not yet dominanting the rum. Memorable indeed., considering the nebulous origin.

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