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Recommendable to most
In a single sitting, I tried three Clairin brought to us by Velier. Like the others (Clairin Le Rocher and Clairin Vaval) it's a mix of Jamaican and Martinique/agricole styles. Clairin might not be to everyone's taste, but I'd urge every rum nerd to at least try a glass if they have the opportunity. (The reasonable price point should help.)
This one was the most balanced and subtle of the three. Mineral, a hint of green olive, and just a little funk to make it interesting.
After having some, I tried the rest ti' punch style (just a wee bit of lime and cane syrup), but I think it dulled the subtleties more than the burn. It would probably be good in a daiquiri, but I think a little wasted. This one is probably best straight.
This is a stunning product. The wild yeast fermentation provides such a rich pallette of flavours and aromas that it is guaranteed to provoke some, but I find they are all balanced — if such a word is proper for a rhum this overly funky and rich. Unaged, untamed but still balanced, I find, classic cane juice nose initially but a bit of breathing will add perfumed rubber, cottonsedge and anise-citrusy spices (those who dislike it will rather say it smells of a randy ram on a rainy day and burnt tyres).
You might want to add a few drops of water if you are not used to cask strength, and you will be surprised how it is turned into a spiced, fruity rhum experience with its own idiosyncratic style reminiscent of eccentric rhums agricoles, Jamaican funk and outer space juice. You might also want to follow Zaphod Beeblebrox’ advise and "never drink more than two (...) unless you are a thirty ton mega elephant with bronchial pneumonia”.
First tried the 2015 version of this at the Manchester Rum Festival in 2017 and for me this was the best rum/rhum at the event.
Never tried a Clairin before, so was amased by the amount of flavour in this rhum.
Ordered a bottle of the 2013 once I got home and its very similar (to me). If this is the general quality of Clairins, I'll be buying loads of this stuff.
Une merveille de rhum blanc, au nez de la canne fraîche, citronné, acidulé, en bouche une douceur incroyable et une superbe longueur sur la cannes, le citron... magnifique
fresh sugar cane juice. dry rhum.
opening the bottle. putting the rhum into a nosing glas.
sniffing. grassy. citrus. pepper.
drinking. sugar cane. grassy. citric. peppery. and salty. and salty.
yes, for a rhum very salty :).
9/10 for this fresh powerhouse!
There's definitely a surplus of heads products, such as ethyl acetate and acetone which gives it a very heady character. It's quite light on the palate, however, with whispers of cane and olive brine. It's somewhat intense and "unrefined", which isn't always a bad thing though I wish the heads was a little more restrained. It's unique and very worth having on the shelf - I'd put it in the same league as Cachaca.
I have a lot of respect for the serious distillers of Haiti as the country is very poor and has been mostly alienated by the rest of the world following the revolution. Its a good rum, and all the knowledge and technique involved in its production likely developed from time and experience on account of the distillers, without access to modern research. I hope most of the profit makes it back to Haiti.
Michel Sajous cultive une petite parcelle (30ha) sur l'île d'Haïti.
Son agriculture est vertueuse puisqu'elle respecte une approche biologique. La canne cultivée, la Cristalline est propre à l'île et doit sa notoriété à sa grande richesse aromatique. Nous sommes donc en présence d'un "rhum bio" monovariétal
C’est à partir du pur jus de canne, (sans filtration), que nous est proposé cet excellent Clairin.
Nez: la canne à sucre explose et laisse ensuite une jolie place aux notes mentholées qui lui donnent son identité et son caractère.
Bouche: généreuse et délicate empreinte d'une grande fraîcheur associant menthol et notes florales puissantes. Finale: les notes florales persistent et laissent une saveur divinement rafraîchissante
Became one of my favorites!
Best agricole I've ever had. In Haiti they want to make this an idividual category rather than "just" agricole rhum.
Such good quality funk. A strong nose of cane, banana, and moss. Palate is not as smooth and a little hot. To me, that’s not a bad thing.
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