Raise a Glass to Rhum!

Press release

Follow Martinique’s Route du Rhum to discover the island’s distilleries.

Fort-de-France, Martinique - The French Caribbean island of Martinique is the Rhum Capitol of the World. Martinique’s rhum agricole, made from fresh sugarcane juice, are the only rums to carry the prestigious AOC (appellation d’origine controlée) designation formerly reserved for fine wines. Follow the routes below to traverse the island while enjoying the distinct flavors and terroir.

The North

Château Depaz

Overlooking the Bay of Saint-Pierre, walk amongst the verdant grounds while witnessing the production process. The sugar cane is harvested, weighed and grinded before the juice is extracted for fermentation, distillation and aging. Pro tip: be sure to try the Château's shrubs during your tasting.

Distillerie Depaz – Plantation de la Montagne Pelée

Free Visit and Tasting: Monday-Friday 10AM-5PM, Saturday 9AM-4PM

www.depaz.fr

Rhum J.M.

Nestled beneath Mount Pelée, the rich volcanic soil along with the tropical humidity creates a unique microclimate contributing to a very distinct rhum. A unique part of the JM visit is the olfactory workshop: plunge your sniffer into the bouquet of each of JM’s seven rhums as well as the seven distinct notes that contribute to the aromatic richness.

Distillerie JM – Au Macouba, Route de Grand-Rivière

Free Visit and Tasting: Every day from 9AM-5PM

www.rhum-jm.com

Neisson Distillery

One of the few continuously-owned family distilleries, Neisson dates from 1932. The distillery is now run by the daughter and grand-son of Hildevert Pampville Neisson.

Neisson Distillerie – Le Carbet (Quartier du Coin)

Free Visit: Monday-Friday 8AM-5PM, Saturday 8:30AM-12PM, and Sunday 9AM-12PM

www.neisson.fr

Saint James Distillery

While distillery visits are available for a fee, the highlight of a visit to Saint James is the House of Distillation and Rhum Museum. Witness the different stills used since the founding of Saint James in 1765 at the House of Distillation and browse the exhibition of old ads and photos showcasing the growing of the cane and the different production steps at the Rhum Museum. Pro tip: stop by the restaurant for lunch and don’t miss the accras.Every December Saint-James and the surrounding town are the setting of the free Rum Festival. Filled with rum tastings, live concerts, a parade and cane field train rides the festival is one of Martinique’s largest annual events.

Saint James – Le Bourg in Sainte-Marie

Free Visit and Tasting: Every day from 9AM-5PM

Rhum Saint-James

Where to Stay

French Coco: a high-end 4-star rustic-chic property with lush gardens and easy walking distance to the beach in La Trinité

Villa Saint-Pierre: 3-star eco-friendly family owned hotel in Saint Pierre

Domaine Saint Aubin Hotel: a 3-star 19th century colonial manor in the midst of a lush park in La Trinité

Center

Habitation Saint-Etienne

One of the principal sugar factories in the 19th century, Saint-Etienne is no longer distilled on site. Rather the rum is distilled in the town of Le François and aged at Saint-Etienne. Tour the old distillery and the cabins where the field workers lived; one of the last and most beautiful witnesses to Martinique’s 19th century architecture. Additionally, the habitation welcomes all types of artistic endeavors from concerts to exhibitions. .

Free entry every day from 9AM-5PM

Habitation Saint-Etienne Distillery

Where to Stay

Cap Est Lagoon & Spa: 4-star suites on a private peninsula with a secluded beach and spa in Le François

Le Simon: contemporary 4-star boutique hotel centrally located in Fort-de-France

Plein Soleil: Recently elevated to a 4-star hotel,16 spacious rooms on the heights of la Pointe Thalémont of Le François.

The South

Habitation Clément

In addition to exploring the former distillery and cask storehouses, a visit to Clément offers architecture, nature and art. The 18th century Creole home, complete with original furniture and interior design, offers a glimpse into the past. The 16 hectares surrounding the home are filled with old trees and 300 species of tropical plants interspersed with striking original sculptures. Art continues with the Fondation Clément, several galleries dedicated to international contemporary exhibitions.

Habitation Clément – Domaine De L’Acajou in Le François

Fondation : Free / Habitation : 13€ / Every day from 9:30AM-5PM

Map & Audio Guide available in English

www. habitation.fondation-clement.org

La Mauny Distillery

Hop aboard the Ti Train and ride through the orange tree grove and sugar cane fields to discover the distillery (and witness the process during harvest season). Check out the storehouses and finish up with a tasting.

La Mauny Destillery– Rivière Pilote

Visit: Monday –Saturday 9AM-5:30PM; 5 Euro per person

La Mauny Distillery

Where to Stay

La Suite Villa is Martinique’s only 5 star hotel. Located in Trois-Ilets, there are 9 private villas.

Bakoua Hotel: 4-star West Indies style hotel with tennis, swimming pool and water sports facilities

Karibéa Sainte-Luce Resort: recently renovated 3-star hotel complex.

About Martinique (www.us.martinique.org)

The French Caribbean Island of Martinique is also known as the Isle of Flowers, The Rum Capital of the World, the Birthplace of coffee in the New World, The Isle of the Famed Poet (Aimé Césaire) – Martinique ranks among the most alluring and enchanting destinations in the world. As an overseas region of France, Martinique boasts modern and reliable infrastructure – roads, water and power utilities, hospitals, and telecommunications, services all on par with any other part of the European Union. At the same time, Martinique’s beautifully unspoiled beaches, volcanic peaks, rainforests, 80+ miles of hiking trails, waterfalls, streams, and other natural wonders are unparalleled in the Caribbean, so visitors here truly get the best of both worlds. The currency is the Euro, the flag and the official language are French, but Martinique’s character, cuisine, musical heritage, art, culture, common language, and identity are of a distinctly Afro-Caribbean inclination known as Creole. It is this special combination of modern world conveniences, pristine nature, and rich heritage that has earned for Martinique several notable distinctions in recent years. Hot off the press: In January 2019 OprahMag.com listed Martinique first in “The 19 Best Winter Getaways.” Martinique is also featured in the Caribbean Journal’s Best Caribbean Islands to visit in 2019, in addition to naming the Isle of Flowers “Culinary Capital of the Caribbean”. Martinique has also been featured in Travel + Leisure and the New York Time’s “52 Places to go in 2018.”

Contact

Marion Fourestier
Atout France-The France Tourism Development Agency