Time flies. The day has come again for me to evacuate the liquor from my small barrel and see what's what.
In the barrel this time was 2L of Cruzan Estate Light rum. What has come out of the barrel is a rum that's darker in color (big surprise!) and its aroma, as I expected, smells highly of wood. But wait a second... why is the rum gone??? Where did my rum go? Damn those angels... the angel's share is certainly a mighty opponent, I've come to learn. It's official: aging things in this barrel for about 5 months tends to yield results that are less than half of the original volume. It's time to taste the rum!
Cruzan Estate Light, at-home aged
Mostly of wood, though it doesn't taste of whiskey, which I feared. There's not much smoke either, like I predicted. What we have here is an aroma mostly of dry wood, with a little rum seeping through.
Honestly, this stuff is fantastic. It's certainly doesn't taste much like a traditional rum. Most of the rum's original flavor is gone... pummeled by the wood. [insert dirty joke here]
That next passenger for this barrel is a mixture of grape spirits. I've put in 1 liter of Ansac VS cognac, which is one of the best brandy values I know. It's on the fruity side, with a deep flavor and a sweet finish. Then I poured 750mL of Machu Pisco. Pisco is distilled from grapes like brandy, but is aged less for a more vegetal and spicy taste. Its aroma and flavor are fruity... it almost smells like apple juice to me. I chose to add pisco so that the overall contents of the barrel wasn't too old before I began to age it even more. The resulting mixture had the darkness of a younger gold rum, and I'm ok with that. Oh yeah, and I also added about 200mL of 190 proof grain alcohol... call it my desperate swipe at the angel's share.