La Favourite 1990 AOC


Average score

Bottle Profile
Distillery La Favorite
Origin Martinique
Bottler none
Type Agricole Rhum (artisanal column)
Alcohol By Volume 40%
Sugar Measured 0 g/L
Description Rhum Vieux Agricole AOC Martinique Millésime 1990, about 5-6 years old
Review 5


Review by "Lance" Score: 83

Founded in 1842 and remaining a small family owned outfit in Martinique, La Favorite makes this AOC designated rhum vieux, aged a minimum of three years (I've been told it is five years old). They make a big deal of the transmission of distillation technique and blending from father to son, as well as their selection of only the best cane, the natural fermentation, and controlled distillation (using steam powered equipment). I've gone into the history of the company a little more here. This gold rhum derives from pot still, issued at 40% in 1990. One wonders why they didn't keep it longer, if the year was such a good one. And what's with the cheap tinfoil cap?

Nose: Wow. A very punchy, pot still profile (almost like a clairin with a tan). Pungent, briny, oily, chewy. Like a pail of salted beef. Grassy and green mango hints permeate here and there. Morphs well into black cake, chopped dark fruit (prunes, black grapes) and olives. More than 40% might have been too much, and I don't say that very often.

Palate: A bit raw, toasty and spicy. Rubber and plasticine. Emergent deep notes of black olives, dates, cereal, caramel, vanilla and smoke (in that order, for me). With water, an amazing thread of green apples and citrus, tart lemon zest (like a meringue), yet the dusky brine never entirely leaves the profile.

Finish: Medium short and warm, not dry at all. Some of that saltiness continues, but mostly wax and lemon and some unsweetened caramel.

Thoughts: Thoughts - Unusual, in a good way. Really a lot of flavour here. This is one of those times I think 40% is okay. Stronger would have been more intense yes, but might also have shredded the balance of sweet, salt, grass and citrus.

Review by "Cyril" Score: 83

Nose: De couleur ambrée, belle robe brillante, d’apparence huileuse avec d'épaisses jambes qui retombent à vive allure. Le nez est délicieusement fruité, sur le confit, avec du pruneaux et cette cerise noire que je trouve si caractéristique des rhums La Favorite, comme une évidence. On retrouve aussi de la vanille, du chocolat et de la canne gorgée de sucre et dorée. On imagine un champ de cannes parsemé de fruitiers exotiques, avec une touche végétale notable et de la menthe fraîche mais le tout toujours flatté par les fruits, et un boisé (chêne et réglisse) présent mais maîtrisé.

Palate: L'attaque est douce et soyeuse, sur le confit, le boisé (réglisse), la canne, dans une certaine élégance, avec toujours cette menthe qui nous rafraîchit et un côté minéral (iode/sel) qui marche plutôt bien en bouche. Les épices réchauffent la bouche, et deviennent légèrement piquantes, le chêne s'impose un peu plus.

Finish: La fin de bouche n'est pas très longue, on retrouve ce petit goût iodé qui fait ressortir chaque arôme un peu plus, les épices, et le boisé, peut-être un poil trop présent à cet instant.

Thoughts: Très joli rhum, caractéristique de La Favorite avec ce petit quelque chose d'ancien qui rajoute de la magie à la dégustation.

Review by "Serge" Score: 84

La Favorite Distillerie remains extremely traditional and is highly regarded. Their output is quite small. Colour: amber.

Nose: Starts a tad oaky, with plenty of pencil shavings and chocolate, but oxygen does it much good and will let complex tertiary notes of sauces and aromatic herbs come through. I find a little mint and gravy (and yet it’s no English-style rum ;-)), then soy sauce, shiitake, Maggi and all that. Plus, of course, briny cane juice. A rather unusual profile, extremely far from the sugar bombs that tend to invade our rum shelves.

Palate: Exactly the same phenomenon. A bit of oak and liquorice at first, then subtle yet assertive notes of meat sauces, mushrooms, mint, tobacco, salted liquorice… It’s really a pity that the ABV wasn’t a tad higher, though.

Finish: A bit short, but salty and gamy at times, then salty and kippery.

Thoughts: Complex and characterful old style agricole, just a little weak(ish).

Review by "Marco" Score: 79

A rum from the La Favourite distillery (Martinique) from 1990, before in 1996 the regulations for the information of age have changed. I don't know the exactly age of this rum. I have read something about a minimum of 12 years, but that's unofficially. Colour: Amber.

Nose: Weak sugarcane flavours and strong menthol are dominating the nose. There are delicate fruit flavours present, but are rather more pushed into the background. I smell mangoes, pears and unripe papayas. No sweetness in the nose.

Palate: Grassy sugarcane and menthol also dominate the palate. The fruit is unfortunately very cautious and only weakly present. Among them I am able to recognize mangoes and pears. Even a mineral component is in this rum. After some time, you can taste only menthol, intertwined with minerals.

Finish: Again sugarcane and menthol. Then the mineral aromas and bitter herbs scurry across the palate. There is also oak from the barrel.

Thoughts: Definitely not a cheap rum and the quality is also good, but the Menthol flavours were too dominating for my liking. Perhaps one reason why they tended more and more to lighter rums on Martinique? Who knows.

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