St Lucia Distillers is a small rum distillery situated in the agriculturally rich valley of Roseau on the Caribbean island of St Lucia.
Recently bought by GBH group (owner of rhum J.M and rhum Clément from Martinique), St Lucia Distillers is committed to what the Barnard Family initially started in 1931, the production of a variety of world class artisanal rums by staying true to the island tradition.
The distillery produces the following rums which have recently launched in Australia.
Chairman’s Reserve Rum
Chairman’s Reserve Rum (40% ABV) is a blend of column and pot still distillates matured separately in first fill ex American oak casks. The aged rums are blended then further matured in casks for another 6 months to allow the flavours to marry. Although it has no age statement, the average age is five years. The rum has aromas of vanilla, caramel and sweet spice. The palate has notes of cinnamon spice, toffee, dried fruit and honey flavours and finishes with good length making it a rum well- suited to mixing.
Chairman’s Reserve Spiced Rum
Chairman’s Reserve Spiced Rum (40% ABV) is infused with Caribbean spices and fruits steeped separately and added during blending. These include cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, vanilla, coconut, all spice, lemon, orange and richeria grandis, known locally as bois bande, a bark locally renowned as a potent aphrodisiac.
The rum is produced from a blend of Coffey and pot still rums matured in ex American oak casks from Jim Beam, Jack Daniels and Buffalo Trace. The blends are matured separately then blended and reintroduced to oak for a further six months to marry. The average age is again five years.
In the glass, the rum has deep mahogany colour with reddish tinges. Complex on the nose, it has aromas of bitter orange with nutmeg, cinnamon and sweet raisin. The palate is rich and sweet with warm spices, mainly nutmeg, vanilla and clove balanced by a crisp citrus orange peel character and a hint of nuttiness on the finish. Chairman’s Reserve Spiced Rum is best enjoyed straight, over ice, and mixed with cranberry juice, ginger ale or ginger beer.
Chairman’s Reserve – The Forgotten Casks
Chairman’s Reserve – The Forgotten Casks (40% ABV) is a limited release premium rum. On May 2, 2007 St. Lucia Distillers was struck by a major fire which destroyed the administration and blending facility. The distillery was spared but as this created problems with storage space, the casks were left in the most unusual places. The cellar team had forgotten the casks until they were discovered recently and found that the rum had aged to a beautiful complexity. They decided to offer it as a limited release.
Chairman’s Reserve – The Forgotten Casks is a blend of Coffey and pot stills rums matured separately in American white oak casks (Jim Beam, Jack Daniels and Buffalo Trace) then blended and reintroduced to oak for a further six months. The blend of rums ranges from six to eleven years, is non-chill filtered and hence may contain the occasional sediment.
In the glass, it has a rich dark gold mahogany colour. Wonderfully intense on the nose, it has an oaky note, sweet raisins, sultana and hints of tobacco and vanilla. The palate is intense with sweet honeyed fruit and warm spices that contribute to a balanced and complex rum with a lingering finish.
1931 by St Lucia Fifth Edition
In 1931, a new distillery was commissioned in the Mabouya Valley near Dennery in St Lucia where it produced rum until 1972, when St Lucia Distillers was formed, the result of a merger between the Dennery Distillery and the Roseau Distillery. 1931 by St Lucia is a celebration of this history and the first edition is a blend of aged distillates from three pot stills and one Coffey still.
1931 by St Lucia Fifth Edition (46% ABV) is made up of 10% agricole rhum and has an average age between 7 and 12 years. The colour is a vibrant gold with sweet oak notes, leather and tobacco on the nose. Rich sultana with hints of coffee, leather and toasty oak on the palate contribute to a long finish that is quite dry and tannic with well-integrated oak. A hint of grassy vegetal sugar cane at the end adds complexity to this multi layered sipping rum.
The Chairman’s Reserve Mai Tai Competition for 2017 is currently under way. Bartenders in Australia can enter for a chance to be crowned Mai Tai Chairman and become an Ambassador for Chairman’s Reserve Australia.
In partnership with Big Island Wholesalers, distributors of Chairman’s Reserve in Australia.