You can’t buy what I’ve got: A global exclusive review of SX9

I wrote about the fantastic efforts the boys from Stolen Rum have been going to in getting their new Rum across the Tasman and past the archaic protectionist legislation that protects the domestic rum market here.

The one thing missing from the article was an actual experience of the liquid itself. I had tasting notes that talked of complexity, limes and raisins on the nose. Young bananas and pineapple to the finish in the mouth.

Since I first wrote, the liquid has picked up some global acclaim, in the shape of a double gold at the Olympics of alcohol, the San Fransisco Spirits comp.

However, I digress. I find myself, planted on the couch on Friday the 13th, armed with an open bottle and an empty glass.

Time to remedy that, methinks.

The overproof liquid clings to the crystal, its legs lengthening as I hold it up to the light.

The raisin and lime complexity is there, as advertised, but it’s a funky hard to place scent leaps out of the glass, aided in no small measure by that 65% ethanol. The wife puts a nail in it as gingerbread, and she’s right. The burnt bready tones, sweetness and spice swirl together. It truly begs a taste.

The overproof tingles on the tip of the tounge, its fumes wrapping round the top of my mouth . Pepper and heat give way to a flavour that strikes me between the eyes. Pineapple icecream with violet crumble. It absolutely tastes raw, young and a little bit green.

It is moorish, it is complex. It begs another taste and I’m going to have one (or maybe many more, not really maybe, absolutely)

It’s a smack in the face with a flavour fish. Try it in a Nuclear Daiquiri, punch it out in an Alamagoozulum, trade up your tiki drinks.

Do it often, do it now.

Put it in your mouth.


The best not rum you’ll ever drink

The trans-Tasman border is porous my friends.

Porous like the staves of a barrel which must hold a spirit for two years before it can legally be sold or called rum inside the Commonwealth of Australia. This statutory peculiarity perpetuates an advantage held by a certain ursine rum producer nestled in this country’s North.

Cue then, a small and cheeky upstart.

Stolen Rum have a new product in their range, SX9. Named for, and inspired by the traditions of the Nine Nights in the Caribbean (the traditional period of mourning when a body lies in state and the family and friends gather to celebrate a life that was and suffering that is no more. The ninth night precedes the church service and burial, it also is call for a terrific knees up during which the attendants swig un-aged overproof rum and the deceased spirit is believed to pass through party and say its last goodbye before moving on.

Heady stuff indeed.

SX9 is pot distilled in Jamaica from a molasses base. The distillates are then hand blended to deliver a complex lime and raisin nose and a young banana and pineapple finish in the mouth. The finished product is bottled at 65% abv, seemingly enough to ensure you can connect with poor dead uncle Isaac as he floats across the living room, if not join him yourself.

Which brings me back to the slightly incomplete fragment at the top of this article. Rum that hasn’t seen the inside of a barrel for two years cannot be legally imported nor called rum inside Australia’s environs. Rather than try to challenge this tremendous oversight using the CER framework agreed and signed on to in 1982 (NZ Apples have just managed to gain access after 30 years of trying) the team at Stolen have gone for the next logical solution and started print ads for folks willing to mule this illustrious liquid across the ditch.

Head to the Stolen facebook page for more info, and to sign up for some muling duties should the desire take you. (The pic below is linked)

You’ll not only get the undying admiration of your friends and family for signing up on the internet to become a mule, you’ll also recieve a fetching t-shirt so other Mules will be able to recognise you. No word yet on whether or not wearing a shirt with Mule stencilled on the front gets you a “value added” cavity search to really make your international travel memorable.

SX9 will only be available in bars for the next foreseeable future, failing a repeal of the rum laws, or a inter-country muling agreement with the staff of Dan Murphys.