Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin

Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin Rum Review by the fat rum pirateSaint Benevolence Rum Clairin. Saint Benevolence is a charitable organisation which was set up in 2017 by father and son team Calvin and Chase Babcock. This follows on four decades of work by Calvin in helping the people of Haiti.

The town of Saint Michel de L’Attalaye is where most of Calvin and Chase’s charitable work is located and it the people in this town that they have helped the most. They decided to combine their desire to help the people of Haiti with their love of Caribbean rum. And Saint Benevolence was born.

Bwason Pou Bonte – Haitian-Creole meaning “Drink to Goodness” , is an expression that embodies the buoyant spirit of the Haitian people as well as the philanthropic ethos of Saint Benevolence.

Every sip of Saint Benevolence Clairin and aged Caribbean rum directly funds charitable organisations such as Living Hope Haiti, Ti Kay and Innovating Health International.

Saint Benevolence have two expressions available in their fledgling range. One is an aged Caribbean rum the other which I am reviewing today is an unaged traditional Haitian Clairin.

The town of Saint Michel de L’Attayale does have working distilleries. These distilleries on Haiti which produce clairin are very rudimentary and often put together by hand from foraged materials and the Pot Stills are often pretty basic and capable of very small batch distillation.

Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin is a field blend of Cristalline, Madame Meuze, Farine France and 24/14; indigenous cane clones organically grown in the fertile alluvial soils and tropical climate of Saint Michel de l’Attalaye.  This sugar cane is grown in the fields surrounding the Dorcinvil Distillery. The processes for producing this Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin are entirely organic. Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin Rum Review by the fat rum pirate

The sugar cane is harvested by hand and the resulting sugar cane juice is fermented with wild yeasts for between 5 and 7 days.

In homage to Saint Michel, the town of the spirit’s provenance some of the sugar cane juice is reduced to a syrup before being fermented in a local style, known as Methode Saint Michel.

The two resulting fermentations are then blended together and ran through the hand built Copper Pot Still. This results in Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin.

Saint Benevolence rum is mainly available in the US. I was sent a sample to try and get the word out about this, as it for a very noble cause and definitely something to get behind.

Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin retails at just over or around $30. A simple search on google reveals a lot of online stores, where you can find it. Here are a couple of examples. I’m not sure what availability will be like in every state. Presentation wise Saint Benevolence, comes in a very and shapely tall bottle. The labelling is modern and there is a good amount of information on the bottle. The website is also pretty good for information. Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin is bottled at 50% ABV

In the glass Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin is a crystal clear liquid. The nose is very rustic with lots of vegetal grassy sugar cane notes. There is a slightly sweet sour note.  Gooseberries and a salty briny aroma. It’s quite pungent and can be nosed from a distance.

Further nosing reveals some tart lime notes and a smattering of sour cream and mayonnaise. There is a slightly spicy note of horseradish as well.

Sipped Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin is surprisingly smoky and almost mezcal like. It is quite stony and mineral-ey. A much cleaner spirit than the quite vegetal nose suggested. Quite clinical and tastes a little of how disinfectant smells (don’t go there!). But in a good way (?).

It’s certainly quite unique and it tastes a little more refined than some of the Velier Clairins. Finish wise it isn’t especially long but it leaves a nice spicy burn. More than a hint of Wasabi/Horseradish. I love Wasabi, so this is a really nice compliment to the smoke.Saint Benevolence Rum Clairin Rum Review by the fat rum pirate

The website notes that this works well in a number of cocktails. It is certainly something a skilled bartender could work with and probably use both as a rum and a substitute for other more exotic spirits.

I tried it in a Caiprinha and it worked well. The smokiness worked really nicely and more of the sweeter vegetal notes shone through.

This is not going to be for every rum drinker – it’s certainly not your average white rum or even rhum. Definitely one for the more experimental enthusiast.

Really good stuff.





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