Goslings Brothers, Bermuda's oldest business house and largest export company, has unwrapped the world's most elaborate rum package.
Four years ago, the America's Cup announced their decision to bring the 35th running of the event to Bermuda in 2017. One company in particular instantly realized the enormity of this occasion: Goslings Rum, the oldest and largest export business on the island, established there in 1806.
As the 7th generation President & CEO of Gosling-Castle Partners, Inc., Malcolm Gosling explained, "We knew this was huge. I mean, seamanship and rum have gone hand in hand for centuries. And our Black Seal Rum has become the de facto rum of sailors worldwide. So, we decided then and there to create something truly exceptional."
It appears they succeeded. To begin with, Mr. Gosling tapped the last of their oldest rum barrels, dating back to 1968. "Of course, we couldn't put this rarest of rums in just another fancy bottle," said Mr. Gosling. "We wanted something that was outrageously different and I said, 'spare no expense.' "
The result is a limited edition, serial-numbered, handmade wooden chest that houses a 750 ml bottle of the prized rum with a handmade crystal decanter to pour it into. If the decanter looks familiar, that's because it was designed to replicate a smaller version of the America's Cup "Auld Mug"– the oldest trophy in international sport.
Also in the chest is a solid glass stopper for the decanter, a leather book describing the entire fabricating process and a small tasting journal to jot down dates and notes of each sipping occasion.
The leather-lined, polished wooden chest was crafted by Moran's Wood Components in England. It features a pull-out drawer for the rum bottle and book, and an etched glass door that showcases the decanter itself.
The decanter was created by Dartington Crystal, the UK's premier name in hand crafted glassware. It incorporates a sterling silver handle, individually fashioned to fit each decanter, by T.R. Sterling of Essex, England.
Only 166 of these heirlooms have been produced — one for each year the America's Cup has been in existence. The selling price, $10,000 apiece and this exceptionally rare object will be sold only in Bermuda. For information on how to purchase an Auld Trophy Decanter please call Tracy Westhaver 441.298.7348.
"The America's Cup sailing in Bermuda is no ordinary event," beamed Mr. Gosling. "And this is no ordinary souvenir."