In traditional production runs, rum is distilled and then placed in a barrel to age. The barrel is typically rotated throughout the process to ensure the rum ages evenly and to help round out disparities caused by fluctuations in temperature and inconsistent barrel quality. Seven Fathoms' concept of underwater aging takes out the need for this rotation, allowing the currents of the sea and the tides to "massage" the rum within the barrel. Wineries have been doing this for some time with success, and, according to Luis Ayala, Author and Rum Consultant, the effects have also been found in booze that is shipped long distances in barrels due to the constant movement it experiences during the ride.
Although it is unlikely you would be able to tell the difference between a sea-aged rum and one that has undergone careful attention from a distiller on dry land, we love the technique and guts that comes along with the production of Seven Fathoms. It tastes good, without question, very flavorful yet smooth and easy-going for a dark rum.
Considering the process and patience that goes along with finding the right spot underwater in terms of humidity, temperature, and current strength, the price tag actually isn't that unreasonable at $60 for a 750ml bottle. If you're interested in a taste but have no plans to visit the Cayman Islands, you can buy it online.
[Photo: Seven Fathoms]