La Favorite is produced at a family owned distillery of Martinique. This rhum agricole is distilled in a single copper still using fermented sugar cane juice. This juice is pressed from fresh cut sugar cane that has been allowed to mature for one to three days. In Martinique this is done during the dry season between January and May when the sugar cane would be at its sweetest. This limited window leads to the rhum agricole being produced in small batches. After fermentation, the rhum is aged in used whiskey and bourbon barrels for three years at 55% alcohol by volume.
Sealed with a white and blue screw top with the words Habatation La Favorite around the neck along with the A.O.C. seal. The top of the cap states that the distillery was founded in 1842. The bottle is clear glass with white and blue labels with black text on the front and back. The back label also has the dual purpose of creating the image of the plantation with palm trees with the words Coeur de Canne. The front label repeats the words on the neck as well as detailing Martinique as the island of origin for the distillation and bottling of the rhum. The back label has a basic statement and legal details required for distribution in the U.S. It is bottled at 50% alcohol by volume and distributed by Caribbean Spirits Inc. out of Chicago. The labels are not cleanly pressed on the bottle which takes away from what could be an eye catching presentation.
It did not take long for the rich floral bouquet to rise from the glass. The smell reminded me of walking through a tropical flower garden. The floral notes recede only to be replaced by the smell of sugar cane.
As the liquid crossed the lips, the alcohol is immediately present but not overwhelming. The floral notes dance around the tongue as the fruity sweetness follows close behind, replacing one note with another. This sweetness evolves, adding a slight citrus note to the tongue. This lingers into the finish leaving alcohol notes on several parts of the tongue.
When I found this rum on the shelves it intrigued me. I had been looking around Metro Atlanta for a Rhum Agricole to explore and it was a bonus it was from Martinique - both can be hard to find in Georgia. The alcohol might not suit some people's palates, but I never found it overwhelming or negatively impacting the flavor experience. It is not particularly smooth but I have yet to find a three year old rum that is. The floral/fruit/cane notes created an unexpected complexity. One of my friends had mentioned that this was her go-to rum for a classic Daiquiri and Ti Punch. So of course we had to try a Daiquiri using it. The flavor combination raised the bar on this simple cocktail and was quite enjoyable.