The first batch of 242 of the total 605 bottles of “Rum Agrícola Madeira 970 Reserva” from the Destilaria Engenhos do Norte (Engenhos do Norte Distillery), which have been maturing underwater since March at the Marina Quinta do Lorde in Caniçal, has been removed from the sea.
“Today we removed two cages with 242 bottles: the operation went very well and, after the tasting, we came across a fabulous thing, we are very pleased and it is an experience to continue”, said the company administrator Miguel Faria.
“It resulted in a very appetizing rum, very round, very easy to drink because it has matured”, he added.
The submerged bottles – the 363 still in the depths will be hoisted early next year – were subjected to temperatures ranging from 17 to 24 degrees and the animal life attached to the bottles will now be studied by MARE – Center for Marine and Environmental Sciences to elaborate a neck label narrating the experience.
Six hundred and five bottles of “Rum Agrícola Madeira 970 Reserva”, from the Destilaria Engenhos do Norte, packed in five metal cages, were launched on March 30th at the sea of Marina Quinta do Lorde, in Caniçal, in an experiment presented, then, as unprecedented.
An initiative of the company J. Faria, owner of the almost centenary Destilaria Engenhos do Norte, founded in 1927 in the village of Porto da Cruz, in the municipality of Machico, Madeira, in partnership with the Center for Marine and Environmental Sciences.
The objective is to determine the evolution of the organoleptic properties (which impress the senses) of the agricultural rum produced by the Engenhos do Norte in an underwater maturation.
Five metal cages were deposited in the depths of the Marina Quinta do Lorde entrance, two of which were hoisted and removed three months later. The remaining three will remain in the water for one year.
“We think it will go well, it will be an unprecedented rum experience, because we have done some research and to date we are unaware that such an experiment has ever been done. We are pioneers”, the responsible for the company – Miguel Faria – said at the time to Lusa.
“We sank five cages containing a total of 605 bottles in the clear waters of Marina Quinta do Lorde, at a depth ranging from eight to ten meters, with the intention of gauging the evolution of rum when subjected to these experiential conditions”, he explained.
The rum produced by the distillery – which has already won several international awards (silver and bronze medals in spirits competitions) – is mostly intended for export to the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Italy.
The rum deposited in the ocean is “970 Reserva”, obtained exclusively by alcoholic fermentation of fresh sugarcane juice and subsequent distillation, aging for six years in French oak casks.
With its 26-meter high chimney, evident in the landscape of the small and quiet village of Porto da Cruz, Engenhos do Norte is one of the few examples of distillery operating in Madeira and the only one with steam machinery that refers to the times of the Industrial Revolution.
According to the IVBAM – Instituto do Vinho, do Bordado e do Artesanato da Madeira (Madeira Wine, Embroidery and Handicraft Institute), in 2018, 518.062,10 liters of Madeira Agricultural Rum were bottled, which generated a revenue of 2.527.317,82 euros.