No vacation is complete without exploring the local distilleries, especially when you are visiting the Caribbean. This destination is not just about fun in the sun and sandy beaches, it’s also about the local produce of rum too. The rum industry in the Caribbean started flourishing back in the 17th century from the need to repurpose the residue from sugar production.
While there are several distilleries in every nook and corner of Caribbean that you can visit, these are our nine recommendations of rum distilleries. From tasting to the process of preparation, get an up-close understanding of your favourite spirit. They have spent centuries to perfect the process and the blending techniques, that is why we think the Caribbean has the best rums in the world. When in the Caribbean, make sure the rum tour is on your itinerary. Here’s a list of the best rum distilleries in the Caribbean that you must-visit.
1. Cayman Spirits Company Distillery, Georgetown
This is the only distillery in Grand Cayman and is not to be missed. Their unique ocean ageing process creates Seven Fathoms Rum. Produced from the local sugar cane, they are packed in white oak barrels and then anchored 42 feet below the surface of the ocean or at a depth of seven fathoms to age. When at Cayman Spirits Company Distillery, you can sample both their products, rum, and vodka. This is undoubtedly one of the best rum distilleries in the Caribbean.
2. River Antoine Rum Distillery, Grenada
River Antoine Rum Distillery is amongst the oldest distillery in the Caribbean. They started their journey in making rums back in 1785, and it is still done most traditionally as was the case centuries ago. A guided tour to River Antoine will showcase cooking, fermenting, and distilling process along with the sampling and tasting their rum produce. They distil smaller batches of their best-known rum that is called “slightly overproof” and is quite famous locally.
3. St. Nicholas Abbey, Barbados
This island’s history of creating rum dates back to 1650s and St. Nicholas Abbey came into existence around the same time. Housed in the marvellous Jacobean-style mansion, which is amongst the only three remaining in the Western Hemisphere. Take a tour of the distillery and enjoy visiting the most beautiful historic site in Barbados. Their honey-coloured 12-year-old produced from molasses and aged in old bourbon barrels are a must-try.
4. Appleton Estate, Jamaica
This is the oldest distillery in Jamaica and is quite reputed in the world of rum. Appleton Estate uses eco-friendly distilling and has over 200 years of history to distilling. While at the estate, don’t forget to try their 50-year-old offering, which is the oldest barrel-aged rum in the world. Appleton Estate is a massive estate with sugar cane farm in itself and offers generous tastings of a list of rums.
5. Rhum J.M Distillery, Martinique
Dating back to the 17th century, Rhum J.M Distillery is one of the oldest distilleries amongst the nine others in Martinique. The rum produce is actively controlled by the French A.O.C. standards. Sample the rums they have to offer and their variety of cocktails while taking a tour of the distillery.
6. Casa Bacardi, Puerto Rico
This gorgeous holiday destination in the Caribbean is also called the rum capital of the world. Their mixology tour is the highlight of it all. From the welcome drink to the exciting tour of the distillery and learning about the history of Bicardi family, everything is a learning experience. If you are fascinated by mixology and cocktails, a visit to Casa Bacardi will teach you how to make Cuba Libre, mojito, and daiquiri. We strongly recommend Casa Bacardi for the distinctive distillery tour experience.
7. Diamond Distillery, Guyana
Diamond Distillery in Guyana is the ultimate destination for Rum lovers. Located on the banks of Demerara River, this distillery continues to use some of the oldest rum stills in the world. The rums distilled at the Diamond Distillery is famous for the rich flavours and distinctive taste of its products. With a history in rum-making dating back to 1650s, their ageing houses hold over 250,000 barrels of rum.
8. Callwood Distillery, Tortola
Using their traditional distilling technique, Callwood Distillery in Tortola continues to produce some of the authentic rums here. Their facility is over 400 years old and is one of the oldest Sugar Cane distilleries in the Caribbean. The tour of the facility showcases the coal-fired boiler that still smoulders and is used for ageing and their collection of hand-bottled Arundel rum. Callwood Distillery produces about 25 gallons of rum from the sugar cane extracts in a day. Don’t forget to try their 10-year blend, which is one of the best rums you’ll ever have. Unlike most other distilleries listed here, this might not be a fancy spot, but it’s definitely one of the best.
9. Casa Brugal, Dominican Republic
Casa Brugal is one of the leading producers of premium rums in the Caribbean. Established in 1888, Casa Brugal crafts its rum using age-old techniques. Take a tour of the facility and try out Mamajuana. This spirited beverage includes Brugal rum as a key ingredient. Casa Brugal in the Dominican Republic is a must-visit if you your travels take you to the Dominican Republic.
While these are just nine of our recommendations of the best distilleries in the Caribbean, there’s more you could add to your list. Rum tour is one of the best joy trips you can take in the Caribbean to learn more about the process, flavours, and colours. You don’t have to stay beach-bound in the Caribbean during your stay, go out an explore the best spirits they have to offer. Comment below if you would like to add more rum distilleries to our list of recommendations. Don’t forget to share your thoughts below.
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