Classification: Distilled Spirit Specialty
Company: Rolling Fork Spirits
Distillery: MGP Ingredients, Inc (Rye)
Age: Blend of 5 year old rye whiskey & 12 year old Trinidad rum
Mashbill: Undisclosed ( >75% rum, <25% rye)
MSRP: $65 (2018)
Once upon a time an unplanned mingling of unlikely spirits took place with unusual results. You might have heard this story before, but you might want to stick around for the ending on this one.
In this tale, founders Jordan Morris and Turner Wathen set out on a journey to bring unadulterated rums to the American market. Once imported, they barrel finish them in used sherry or bourbon casks to add their own fingerprint. They had just spent six months finishing a 12 year old rum from Trinidad in bourbon casks when a warehouse worker transferring it to a steel tank, didn’t realize the tank still contained 5 year old MGP rye whiskey. This fortuitous union, which stands for “F.U.” for short, or more blatantly as they call it, “fuck up,”resulted in a product the friends never planned on.
I recently posted tasting notes in this column of a rum and bourbon mashup called Brixton Mash Destroyer (nine posts below this one). It was an interesting marriage of two spirits that were equal parts strange and amiable. The bourbon did well to cut some of the rum’s sweeter notes, but would a rye with its spicier notes be a better companion?
Fortuitous Union sports a sugary nose that mingles molasses, butterscotch, and cinnamon, which is offset by a sharp spicy edge. It’s a savory aroma of agreeable intensity, and is unique yet still familiar. The rum’s vanilla and burnt caramel sweetness is nicely cut by a hearty spice that does well to turn this into something of its own creation. The finish is equally rich with a long lasting sugary and oak centric side.
You can’t be blamed for being sick of hearing about “accidental” product creation stories. Stories aside, in the end the products always have to speak for themselves. Overall, Fortuitous Union’s rum characteristics are still present, but softened and transformed into something a whiskey drinker might be more familiar with. The three of us at Breaking Bourbon tasted this against Brixton Mash Destroyer and we unanimously like Fortuitous Union better. Not only that, we all agreed we should split the remaining sample as everyone wanted more. Always a good sign.
The sample used for this review was provided at no cost courtesy of Rolling Fork Spirits. We thank them for the sample and for allowing us to review it with no strings attached.