Finished the cuts on the fancy molasses. Ended up with about 1L of distillate @ 65%ABV - I should note here that with both the blackstrap and the fancy rum after the cuts the ABV was slightly higher then 65%, but I dilluted it with distilled water down to 65% (cask strength) for oaking.
I put 850ml of the fancy rum in a mason jar, used just medium toast oak chips. The remaining 150ml I dilluted to 40%ABV and I'm enjoying it right now with a bit of coke.
So, after fermenting, double distilling, making the cuts then oaking I'm left with this -
The two contenders. I'll age these two guys for about 30 days. I'm not sure how long I'll keep them on oak during the 30 days, I'll taste test regularly. The blackstrap rum already has a nice golden color - I'm surprised it colored up so quickly. The fancy molasses is just oaked in this picture - I expect it will color up nicely in a couple days too.
Next step in 30 days (June 22 or about) is the blind taste time. Homemade vs Appleton
I would like to talk a little bit about feints - the heads and tails from the spirit run that didn't make the cut. (I discarded the blackstrap feints but kept all the feints from the fancy molasses rum - because I plan on continuing my exploration of fancy molasses rum only - I'll be starting up a new wash tomorrow).
I didn't add any feints on either of these runs for this test - this is a single run.
However, normally I add these feints to my spirit run. How much I add is totally a whim - afterall I'm the chef and I just add as much as I feel is needed. Because the feints are made from heads and tails and I only collect tails down to 40%ABV, my feints ABV is about 60%ABV. So it's not like it's the 'bottom of the barrel' collection. These feints actually have quite a nice molasses smell to them.
I've experimented with backsetting and adding feints. I've leaned towards using only feints to start a 'generation' of rum and just forgetting about backsetting. By re-using the feints over and over again I'm finding that rums are developing quite the nice flavor and smell. This stronger flavor could be a substitute for blending with blackstrap rum to get a stronger rum (heavy rum???) from the fancy molasses wash.
I'm still working on the technique, but I thought I would mention it, in case there is some input from fellow rummies on what they do with their feints.