Nestled amongst the rolling hills of the Onderberg district of Mpumalanga and amidst our own sugarcane fields, you can find The MHOBA Rum Distillery: An artisan distillery where we make 10 different types of Pure Single Estate Sugarcane Rum or Pure Single Sugarcane Rum.
Mhoba Bushfire is a pure cane juice rum distilled in a pot-still. This version is a nod to South African culture, where Braai (large barbecues) are a custom. To grill and smoke the meats, hardwoods such as acacia found in the bush are used. To replicate this particular flavour, Mhoba decided to mature its rum in caskets containing toasted acacia wood.
On the nose, we immediately get a very big and beautiful whiff of ripe cane. The characteristic solvent of the brand is for once clearly in the background, and one thinks more of vegetal notes, resinous aromas, or even a cane juice fermented with olives in brine.
The aeration reveals a surprisingly smoky woodiness, which compliments the concentrated cane without interfering with it. It is easy to imagine a wood fire, while the smoke becomes more and more present. One has the impression of being close to a wood-fired still, from which a most artisanal rum would flow.
On the palate, it's like a handcrafted cane brandy from the South African bush. Sugar cane transpires from every drop, accompanied by deep, vegetal, resinous, slightly briny, mushroom-studded fermentation notes. The smoke comes in second, and settles on this superb spirit as it would on a mezcal.
The finish is greedy. The smoky notes fade away and are replaced by sugar cane flavours.
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