Rhum agricole is the French term for a style of rum that’s distilled from fresh-pressed sugar cane juice, rather than molasses, which is a byproduct of refining sugar. And perhaps no place in the world is better suited to producing rhum agricole than Martinique, a hospitable home for sugar cane and one that enjoys a government-stamped AOC (protected designation of origin).
Rhum Clément is one such producer of rhum agricole on Martinique, and they’ve become a favorite among drinkers for their diverse lineup of rhums. From the mixable Premiere Canne to some truly extraordinary ages rhums, Rhum Clement is making the kinds of things we want to drink.
That continued earlier this year, when the brand released two new expressions — Canne Bleue, a 100 proof white rhum crafted from a single varietal of sugarcane, and Select Barrel, a three year old expression that’s aged in rich and aromatic French oak. Today we’re diving into the latter.
Rhum Clément Select Barrel Rhum Agricole pours dark amber in the glass. On the nose, there’s vanilla, caramel, cloves and some unripe fruits. It’s a little hot right off the bat, but the alcohol subsides quickly. Taking a sip, we found a light and flavorful spirit full of green vegetation, raw sugar cane and peppery spice, plus a warming vanilla sweetness and some mild oak. It’s at once intensely flavorful and easy going. It finishes very dry with some spice and oak lingering until the very end.
This is good. Really good. Rhum Clément Select Barrel is exactly what you want at this price point: something well-balanced and elegant enough to stand on its own, but something you won’t be hesitant to mix into a pitcher of ‘Ti Punch.
– 40% ABV
CE Rating: ★★★★