I'm not the first to find out that there's no entry level for the J&B Rare mini, so pay no attention to the 70 cl yadda-yadda, please. I found this little bottle inside my late stepmom's cabinet, so let's toast to her, may she rest in peace.
I dont' exactly know when this was bottled, but I managed to find the batch number with the aid of a handy magnifying glass, so you might know. I think it's got more than a decade, but then again, who knows.
So this is virtually colorless: just a tad of pale wheat in that otherwise featureless waterlike liquid. Aroma starts boozy, then some fermented banana (I mean it), alongside dry lemon, sea breeze, slight avocado (yeah, yeah) and a note I had never spotted before: what they call in Cuba "mamocillo", that is, the fruit of Meliococcus bijugatus (sorry for the pedantic side, but let's be honest, I just googled the scientific binomial.) Nose is splendid, I thought this was just a mixer in a tiny bottle, but check this out.
Warm, slightly aggressive at first and there is some cardboard there. Mouth doesn't live so far up to the nose. Midpalate is crisp and dry, leading to an exotic wood ladden finish. OK, things got better in the end.
So, I came accross what I thought was going to be rubbish and it ended up being more than acceptable. Lucky me! Not that in the past I appreciated J&B a lot, but tasting it calmly from what I think it's an old (tiny) bottle has sort of changed my point of view. Won't love it from now on, but won't deride it either.