Appleton Estate Launches 17 Year Old Legend

Appleton Estate launched the limited-edition 17 Year Old Legend, an exclusive and faithful recreation of the legendary 17 Year Old rum crafted by J. Wray & Nephew on the Estate in the 1940's.

The J. Wray & Nephew 17 Year Old is known around the world as the storied inspiration for the creation of the Mai Tai cocktail. The rum has become one of the most sought-after bottles in the world, and today, a tribute to this legend of cocktail history returns to the world stage as a limited offering – good news for both rum connoisseurs and classic cocktail enthusiasts alike.

Master Blender Joy Spence created this one-time release using four very rare distillates set aside to rest on the Estate to best recreate the taste profile of the prized golden blend. 17 Year Old Legend is the gift of one of the oldest aging rum libraries in the world, and soon to be a jewel of the finest rum collections. Due to the rarity of the distillates, only 1,500 bottles are available globally, never to be produced again.

To those bartenders at the forefront of the emerging Tiki cocktail movement in the 1940's, the J. Wray & Nephew 17 Year Old was one of the most sought-after rums in the world and set the gold standard, prized for its gilded color and sensual, smoky, orange top notes.

In 1944 in California, far from Jamaica's tropical shores, legend has it that this exquisite spirit caught the imagination of one notable bartender in particular – Victor Bergeron, founder of the famous Trader Vic's bar in San Francisco. While experimenting with friends, it's said that he reached for a bottle of 17 Year Old rum, blended by J. Wray & Nephew, which would become his rum of choice.

Medium-bodied, beautiful, and golden, the hues were evocative of the Jamaican sun. Protective to not overpower this special blend, Victor paired it with a subtle range of ingredients, to complement the rum's top notes. Shared with his friends from Tahiti, it was declared 'Maita'i roa a'e', or simply translated, 'the best', and thus, a legend was born.

Produced at the oldest continuously-operating rum distillery in Jamaica, the iconic blend is aged a minimum of 17 years in the island's fertile and tropical climate. Appleton Estate rums age nearly three times more quickly than spirits aged in cooler climates, allowing for richer, fuller flavours to develop in a shorter period – in fact, the minimum age of 17 years in the tropical climate of Jamaica is equivalent to over 50 years of ageing in a cooler climate.

1,500 bottles of this special expression have been produced and are available for sale. Beginning on May 17, 2023, 36 NFTs redeemable for bottles of Appleton Estate 17 Year Old Legend will be available on Appleton Estate has collaborated with Jamaican Visual Artist, Oneika Russell to develop the artwork for each NFT exclusive to BlockBar - a first from Appleton Estate.

The 17 Year Old Legend will also be available at select premium retailers starting in June, 2023, in the United States, Jamaica, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Austria, Denmark, Singapore, Taiwan, South Korea, New Zealand, Japan, and Hong Kong for SRP $500.

Subscribe to Kane's Beverage News Daily

Don’t miss out on the latest issues. Sign up now to get access to the library of members-only issues.