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Old 08-24-2008, 02:57 PM   #31
Matusalem
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On a taste basis, Barbancourt does show signs of being clean cut cane. From a reflective standpoint, the number of 8+ year old agricoles I've tasted has been very few.

Having tasted some vintaged Clement rhum previously, I'm not quite prepared to say that Barbancourt's produce absolutely could not be agricole (were it stilled to bottled in the right location).
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Old 08-24-2008, 04:02 PM   #32
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We could always ask Capn Jimbo for his considered opinion.

Absent additional information, this discussion seems likely to revolve in the same circles as previous considerations of this topic.
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Old 08-24-2008, 04:11 PM   #33
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Are we going to debate the credibiltiy of our host or the reliability of his sources again? If memory serves, Ed stated previously that his sources indicate that Barbancourt distills rum year round (please correct me if I'm wrong). If that is so, it can't be made from sugar cane juice exclusively.

Has any new information been uncovered in the interim?

Should knowledge of the source material affect our perception of the quality of the rum? Agricole or no, Barbancourt makes some very fine rums.

Last edited by Michael; 08-24-2008 at 04:13 PM.
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Old 08-24-2008, 04:25 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matusalem View Post
On a taste basis, Barbancourt does show signs of being clean cut cane.
What aspects of the taste are you talking about specifically?
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Old 08-24-2008, 04:34 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael View Post
Should knowledge of the source material affect our perception of the quality of the rum? Agricole or no, Barbancourt makes some very fine rums.
I'm interested because so far I've found agricoles to taste very distinct - quite unlike other rums.



Barbancourt is also distinctive but seems to be in a class of its own, something different to agricole (or at least those I've tried). For want of a better term I'd call this group 'other French rums'. I'm really under-informed on this matter but I have tasted other French rums, which I do not think made claims to be agricole, that I thought tasted vaguely similar to Barbancourt. Problem is that right now I can't remember brands.

I'd call this taste, for want of a better term, Rhum Baba taste (a sort of 'raisin and baked vanilla cake' thing). I'm sure I've tasted rums other than Barbancourt with this vague profile, and that they were all French (some bottled in France rather than the islands I believe).

So if there is a common thread linking these 'rhum baba' type of rums I'd like to know what it is. . . Maybe nobody knows what I'm talking about though. My inability to name brands other than barbancourt doesn't help. For what it's worth there was this one with a toucan (or similar exotic bird) on the label.

Hmm. . . maybe I'll scout through that rum labels site and see if I can find it.
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Old 08-24-2008, 04:43 PM   #36
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I like your expression 'rhum baba' type of rums"
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Old 08-24-2008, 05:00 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bunnyhugs View Post
What aspects of the taste are you talking about specifically?
Specifically, I think I'd have a hard time describing. If one knows what raw distilled cane tastes like, then one might recognize what I'm referring to (and maybe not - keeping in mind taste is subjective).

Barbancourt tastes... how can I say it... Quite a bit more refined (lack of better words) than the average young agricole. But the sharpest agricoles and the most refined Barbancourt (I'm most familiar with the Stateside 8 & 15) all taste clean of molasses heft imho.

Better words to describe - I'm afraid I'd tie a knot trying! Still I'll try. What I personally find, and I'm just guessing but think it might be attributed to the lack of molasses in the base... I find you can taste some of the more floral-like notes, in Barbancourt like you find in agricoles but it's a very clean & gentle concept in Barbancourt. Not sure if that is in different technique, different raw ingredients, the amount of maturation / different maturation that goes into Barbancourt or all of the above that makes it subtler.

For people who are strictly familiar with molasses based rum but inquiring or interested in agricoles, I often recommend trying Barbancourt first because I feel it gives some idea of what one finds if they search in agricoles... but without the sort of slap in the face I think agricole sometimes gives those who had absolutely no idea what to expect or what rawer distilled cane tastes like - Especially if the intention is to sip neat.

To take it a step further, I don't think I could accurately describe the simpler concepts of corn liquor either. I know "corn" when I taste it, the family was well known for its make back in the day. But I can't accurately describe the exact tastes (in words), beyond more generic terms like sweet(er), more vegetal, sharper etc.

Sorry. I'm just not a talented transcriber of taste to text.
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Old 08-24-2008, 05:05 PM   #38
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I think this is the 'toucan rum' I mentioned. 'Rhum Calao' from Girard. OK, and the bird is not a toucan, something tells me it's a calao - but never mind.



I'm pretty sure I'm right. Label looks about right, and the name Girard just seems to fit.

I remember this as being a pleasant rum with a profile not unlike Barbancourt. Please bear in mind I only tasted it once, a few years ago, before I got into rum, and in the midst of getting bombarded with a whole lot of unfamiliar French products. . . So I could easily be mistaken about its taste here. But that's how I remember things.

Anyone know anything about it?

Looking at some of the other 'Calao' rums on Peter's Rum Pages it seems some are Martinique agricole. The writing on that specific label is too small for me to read though, and anyway my French is bad. Ahh. . confusing.
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Old 08-24-2008, 06:53 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bunnyhugs View Post
I think this is the 'toucan rum' I mentioned. 'Rhum Calao' from Girard. OK, and the bird is not a toucan, something tells me it's a calao - but never mind..
Maybe it was:
http://www.rum.cz/galery/sam/br/ypioca/img/br_53.jpg

Barbancourt Rhum is delicious.
Barbancourt Rhum is from Haiti which used to be French.
Barbancourt Rhum is distilled from sugar cane, in what would be classified the 'agricultural' style-- which is sugar cane juice, or reconstituted sugar cane syrup.
Barbancourt Rhum is NOT an AOC Rhum Agricole, and it doesn't matter.
To be an AOC Rhum Agricole there are other things that would have to be changed by the wonderful Rhum Barbancourt-- They don't feel the need to configure their production method, or to allign their classification... why are we constantly longing to lump things into these circumspect orderly sort of constraining classifications??
Rhum Barbancourt doesn't seem to mind existing in the realm of general 'rum'.
i say we let them be Rhum, Rum, Ron or whatever and take a healthy shot to show our support.
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Old 08-24-2008, 07:04 PM   #40
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Nice find with the Toucan label Forrest.

However, I am pretty sure Rhum Calao was what I previously drank. I remember the paper was yellowish, with a line drawing of the bird (vaguely 19th century 'botanist' style drawing), and the bird was framed by writing on both sides. That label above matches my memory pretty well.

I said 'toucan' because it was the first tropical bird with a big beak that came to mind.


As for clarifying the distinctions between the different rums (or in this case rhums), I just like to understand why what I like tastes the way it does.

I guess I'm also interested in whether there is a 'French style' outside of 'agricole' (or if you like the strictly defined 'AOC agricole'), and if so what the characteristics of that style are.
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