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Committed to innovation and quality, St. Lucia Distillers Group of Companies is a boutique rum distillery situated in the scenically beautiful and agriculturally rich valley of Roseau on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia. A passionate team of distillers, blenders and administrative staff work together to produce some of the world's finest rums.
St. Lucia Distillers' Brands have been recognized at the world's most exacting competitions, winning numerous accolades and awards. In the 2009 International Spirits Challenge Admiral Rodney won the Rum Trophy and St. Lucia Distillers was nominated as only one of three distilleries globally for the trophy 'Excellence in Craftsmanship.'
The company prides itself on its commitment to product development and has an offering of over 25 rums and rum products ranging from premium aged rums and cream liqueurs to traditional pouring rums.
The Art of Making Rum
Raw Materials: Molasses, made from the juice extracted from sugarcane, is imported from a number of sugar producing nations throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Their largest supply comes from Guyana. The distillery currently has five acres under sugar cane. They have planted four selected varieties of cane which is sourced from the West Indies Breeding Station in Barbados. They intend to expand our acreage of cane to ten acres in the coming years.
The molasses is mixed with water collected from local streams and is supplemented by the collection of rainwater. All the water they use for finished product is filtered and undergoes reverse osmosis. The resulting wash is monitored closely by the distillers who ensure Brix levels result in efficient fermentation.
Fermentation: The distillery uses a number of yeasts for the bulk of our molasses fermentation. Their sugar cane fermentation is however, completely natural. Their yeasts are propagated in stainless steel tanks and then used to inoculate the wash. These yeasts have been carefully selected for their flavor profile and their efficiency in converting sugar into alcohol. Fermentation takes place at temperatures of up to thirty four degrees celsius for 24-30 hours. We control the length and temperature of fermentation to give a balance of congeners which give the rums their unique flavor. Sugar cane fermentations can take up to four days as we prefer a natural process.
Distillation: The resulting wash is heated and distilled in either a pot still or column (continuous) still. St. Lucia Distillers has four different stills. This gives them the ability of making different rums with varying flavor profiles which then give the blender the rums to make unique and quality driven products. Traditional small batch distillations differentiate them from larger distilleries and allow them to produce rums with different and distinctive characters.
The Continuous (Coffey) Still (commissioned 1985)
The John Dore Pot Still (commissioned 1998)
The Vendome Pot Still (commissioned 2003)
The John Dore 6000 Liter Pot Still (commissioned 2004)
Maturation: They currently have a large and growing stock of barrels undergoing maturation. St. Lucia Distillers sources its’ white American oak barrels from the Kentucky Bourbon industry and has barrels from Jack Daniels, Buffalo Trace and Jim Beam. In addition to Bourbon barrels they use port barrels for final polishing for products such as TØZ and are experimenting with Hermitage and Chilean wine barrels. They are conducting further experiments with Sherry, Madeira and Sauternes barrels. Tropical aging speeds up the maturation process. The spirit ages two and half times faster than equivalent spirits in Europe. Although this has its’ advantages it can often be the case that rums over 10 years of age can be extremely woody as tropical maturation takes on too much tannin. They carefully check all barrels for the evolution of the spirit and rely on the talents of their blending team to marry old rums with younger rums to get balance and greater complexity.
Blending: The art of blending is central to their philosophy. They do not put age statements on the rums because they believe passionately that complexity and balance can only be maximized by blending old, complex but often “woody” rums with fresher but characterful rums. With the exception of caramel for coloring purposes, they do not add sugar or other additives to the rums, and therefore conform to both Caribbean and European Community rum standards. The exact character of each rum or liqueur is determined by a team of master blenders who maintain the consistency of taste in the existing blends. They continue to develop new products which can find a niche in local and export markets.