Rhum Clément Aging Warehouses – Magical Olfactory Factory Experience
Historic Habitation Clément (est. 1887) is, in many ways, the most famous rhum distillery in Martinique. This, of course, makes it a must-visit among the many distinguished distilleries throughout the West Indies. It’s somewhat surprising, though, that nary a drop of rhum has been produced here in some 30+ years.
Beginning in 1986, new principal owners outside of the Clément family brought big changes to this hallowed ground. In short order, Habitation Clément became more museum than manufactory.
These days, Rhum Clément is distilled at le Distillerie du Simon, a decidedly more industrial complex located nearby. The aging warehouses at Habitation Clément, though, continue to play their time-honored role.
Each year, barrels upon barrels of Clément are transported from Le Simon to their ancestral home at Habitation Clément. There, they age gently in the environs of Le François, just as their predecessors did for nearly 100 years. Thousands of barrels can be found resting here, all of them artfully emblazoned with the profile of the distillery’s founder, Homère Clément.
Visitors touring Habitation Clément can view the casks and sample the Angel’s Share wafting about from open warehouse doors. It’s a magical experience that hints at the exquisite complimentary rhum tasting treats on offer at the end of the tour.