The holiday season is upon us and one of the things that makes this winter holidays different than any other is all the aromas that seem to go with it like fresh cut pine, peppermint, burning candles and baking spices. So when I received word that Captain Morgan had released a limited edition Gingerbread Spiced Liqueur (due to it only being 30%ABV) I thought it would be interesting to pick up a bottle from one of my local stores and review for you.
The 750 mL bottle is the standard design with a metal screw cap and labeling indicating the limited edition holiday theme of the product. To be honest, I am surprised they did not put a Santa hat on the Captain, but they did add the “Tis the Season” tag along with snowflakes and gingerbread color on the front label. The standard warning in tiny letters “Caribbean Rum and other Natural Flavors” is scrawled on the bottom of the label, which I read as “this product has chemical additive, live with it…”.The liquid itself is the normal golden brown color associated with the regular Captain Morgan Spiced product. Swirling the liquid generated a thick band that slowly thickened and after a minute began dropping several waves of slow moving legs before leaving a ring of residue around the glass.
The aroma, well it certainly delivers SWEET notes of sugary ginger, cinnamon and something that distinctly reminds me of bread pudding.
First sip the alcohol nips around the tongue as the ginger/cinnamon notes from the aroma swirl with some allspice and clove notes. At this point you cannot help noticing the healthy dose of glycerol covering the tongue and mouth. There is an underlying sugary sweetness to the experience, but it is not as strong on the palate as it was on the nose. The entire flavor settles into a long sweet frosting finish that just flattens out over time leaving an oily residue in the mouth.
Okay, the question I had to ask is: Did they achieve the goal of creating a Gingerbread spiced flavored spirit? And the answer is sort of, but not really. The components are present in the flavor profile, but they do not unify to create the Gingerbread flavor experience I was looking for. I think the overall sweetness in part is why it spins out and away muting the spices and missing the mark. I cannot think of any Captain Morgan product I would recommend sipping neat (yes, that includes Private Stock), and that holds true with this liqueur. However, thinking of the holiday seasons, this would do well in eggnog, coffee, cocoa, and depending on the recipe as an ingredient in Hot Buttered Rum. I am happy that I could find some uses for it and with its inexpensive price think as an ingredient some consumers will enjoy using it in their cocktail creations. I would be concerned with cooking with it as who knows what the artificial flavors and additives would break down in a baking situation. Definitely focus on the seasonal cocktails and you will be happy, anything else you are setting yourself up for disappointment.