Donated by Velier
Founded in 1923 on the site of the sugar refinery from which it takes its name, the Caroni distillery—famous for its high-ester heavy rums—was one of the British navy’s main suppliers of rum. As Trinidad and Tobago’s sugar industry declined, the island’…More info
Donated by Velier
Founded in 1923 on the site of the sugar refinery from which it takes its name, the Caroni distillery—famous for its high-ester heavy rums—was one of the British navy’s main suppliers of rum. As Trinidad and Tobago’s sugar industry declined, the island’s distillers became increasingly dependent on molasses imports, making distillation increasingly less economically viable. In 2001, Trinidad’s government sold 49% of its shares in the holding company to Angostura. When Caroni closed in 2022, a giant in the history of rum disappeared.
In 2004, Luca Gargano discovered Caroni’s warehouses, where the legendary distillery’s casks still lay ageing. Since then, a huge number of outstanding bottlings have been released by Velier, attracting interest from collectors around the world.
This unique lot features a magnum of the famous Caroni 1994 Guyana Stock Double Maturation. After being distilled in 1994, it was aged in its native Trinidad and Tobago up until 2008. The casks were then transferred to DDL’s Diamond distillery in Guyana, where they were selected by Velier’s Luca Gargano in 2017. This exclusive version bottled in a magnum mouth-blown by master glass-blower Lunardon is presented here for the very first time at auction.
The Caribbean, Trinidad. Distillery closed, site dismantled.
In 1975, under pressure from across the country, the government of Trinidad nationalized a number of companies, including Tate & Lyle, the English giant of sugar production and owner of Caroni Ltd since 1937. The very competitive economic context, however, led to the closure of the island's sugar refineries and the collapse of the molasses production required for the production of rum. In 2001, the government sold its shares in Rum Distillers Ltd (Caroni) to Angostura and closed the distillery in 2002. Caroni Ltd would be definitively liquidated on 31 July 2003. In October 2004, Luca Gargano, the CEO of the Italian spirit distributor Velier and a passionate rum enthusiast and photographer, visited Trinidad to carry out research for a future report. There he found the site abandoned and, within its cellars, a huge stock of barrels, some distilled in 1974. The story of Caroni began in 2005 and the distillery immediately became the subject of lore.
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