This very exclusive limited edition for 2019 is a blend of rums aged 6 to 24 years old. The brilliant blend is then aged through a solera system of carefully selected barrels, mostly sherry and bourbon if I remember correctly.
Master Blender Loreena Vasquez might have gone above and beyond the clouds with this one. Even in a glass as small as the one we were given to sample it produces an explosion of fragrances. Vanilla and wood are keywords here, then come the floral, citrus notes and we finish with wood and some spices. It’s deep, lush, exotic and a tad mysterious. Together with the Zacapa Negra it is by far the most striking expression of Zacapa Rum, we believe and a worthy collectable.
The food at The Jane was, again, wonderful. A f***ing perfect job by Master Chef Nick Bril. We kicked off with a vicious ceviche from seabass with passionfruit and mezcal. Moving on to some chutoro on toasted nori, perfectly followed by a risotto with babysquid. We ended the fishes with a mind-blowing Northsea turbot with smoked beetroot and dashibutter. We had a pulled duck taco as an in-between and majored with a firm poulet de Bresse .
The dessert was awesome! It felt like being shot through the head, because there’s so much going on that your brain can’t compute it all: malt, parsnip, chocolate by the Prince Of Chocolate himself, Mr. Dominique Persoone and even birch juice fermented by ant pee. You probably have to read that again. It’s juice from a birch tree and apparently there’s a special species of ant who particularly loves this juice. So they gather by the hundreds to sit in the juice and start drinking it. After a while it runs through their digestive system and they excrete it again, this liquid is then left to ferment and boom! There’s your magic potion!
I love it, because it shows how passionate and crazy these chefs are and what sacrifices they make on their quest for new flavors. I mean, imagine the conversation at the discovery of this liquid: ‘Look at all these ants! They’re peeing in the drab that comes from this tree! … (together) Let’s taste it!’ If you want more crazy stories, ask Nick Bril about snakes!
All photography by Geertrui Van Goethem, more pics here.