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Introduction to Rhum Agricole

Map of Martinique


Martinique Island, French Indies



Sugar cane


Official Appellation:

There are 2 kinds of rums:

  1. Rhums made from first pressed sugar cane juice, which are the only rums to bear the Official Appellation: Rhum Agricole
  2. Rums made from the residuals of sugar can juice, such as molasses, which is simply called "rum"
Sugar cane fields for producing rum agricole


Rhum Agricole is single distilled in a column still



Ceramic or steel vats are used to age Rhum Blanc, while Limousin oak barrels are used for Rhum Brun


Legal Ageing:

Rhum Blanc: 3 months in ceramic or steel vats

Rhum Vieux: 3 years in wood for dark or aged rhums

Crushed sugar cane for creating rum agricole

Brief process for Martinique Agricole Rhums:

The sugar cans are first defibered with a shredder, then sprinkled with water and crushed with a mill powered by a steam engine. The juice that comes out, the "vesou," is filtered twice and then left to ferment in stainless steel vats until is reaches a minimum degree of 5% alcohol. 


After 3 days of fermentation, the sugar cane wine is then distilled until it reaches an alcohol level of 70%. The white rhums will rest in stainless steel vats for 3 months and will then be reduced to about 50% alcohol for consumption; the rhums intended for ageing will be put into wood barrels.