Top Ten Wineries, Breweries, and Distilleries

Martinique, French West Indies: Rum
Martinique's charming coastal scenery (Weststock)

1. Martinique, French West Indies: Rum
With seven distilleries producing nearly 20 varieties of rum—"rhum" in local parlance—Martinique is the epicenter of Caribbean rum production. Each producer has its own charm, says Ed Hamilton, founder of the Ministry of Rum, a society for the understanding and appreciation of rum. The Depaz distillery, established in 1651, offers one of the best up-close views of rum production, Hamilton says. Depaz uses the rhum Agricole method, the most expensive method, of producing rum, and he uses fresh blue sugar cane harvested seasonally on the property. The distillery sits adjacent to one of grandest buildings on the island, a massive sugar mansion that dates to 1927 and took seven years to build using imported Italian stone masons. The Rhum Clement Domaine Acajou, while not an active distillery, is a meticulously built plantation house that hosted a 1991 summit between U.S. President George H.W. Bush and French President François Mitterrand. The La Mauny distillery, the largest in the French West Indies, is tucked into fields of sugar cane in an intoxicatingly bucolic setting. The St. James distillery, in Sainte-Marie, also boasts Martinique's Rum Museum. Martinique's facilities actively distill rum for only about five months a year (roughly February to June). Tours and tastings occur year-round.
Martinique Travel Guide

Published: 11 May 2009 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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