Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Rhum Clement Creole Shrub

I know there's been a bit of a recipe glut, but there will be a new one up tomorrow. I promise. Right now though I'd like to take a moment to talk about Rhum Clement Creole Shrub. It's an orange liqueur based on agricole rum produced in Martinique. What's agricole? What's creole shrub? Which way lays madness? Why are you even talking about this?

Rhum agricole is, simply put, rum which is produced using the juice of fresh pressed sugar cane as opposed to molasses. Creole Shrub? Well, that a syrup which is made from dried orange peels and various spices. It made its way from Africa to the Indies via the slave trade, and is most often made by small companies and in homes for Carnival and mixed with rum. Pretty much like the yearly appearance of Egg Nog 'round Christmas time.

Madness is down the hall, third door on your left.

I'm talking about it for two reasons. The first is that Ed and I have had Rhum Clement on our radar for a while, though haven't really used it much. Turns out that's a bit of a shame - A few weeks ago Ed, having done so himself, set me up with a tasting of Rhum Clement, Cointreau, and Grand Marnier. Other than getting an overdose of orange, the results were pretty interesting. The Grand Marnier had a nice orange flavor but the Cognac gave it a bit of a burning edge. The Cointreau was a bit smoother yet the orange flavor was distinctly candy like. Think starbursty. Which is totally a word. To my surprise the Rhum Clement was an excellent middle ground - There was no harsh alcohol burn, and the orange flavor was a perfectly non-candy like. The rum base really didn't hit like I thought it would either. Definitely the sort of thing we'd look for in something to use instead of Cointreau or Grand Marnier.

The second reason I'm talking about it is because Ed and I attended a Shrub event at Cantina a couple of nights ago hosted by the man behind the booze, Benjamin Jones. Taking place in the bar's sub-basement Gamma, owner Duggan and barman supreme Jordan were on hand as well mixing up drinks showcasing the Shrub as Mr. Jones talked about its history and production. It was certainly a fine combination of information of deliciousness.

While I'll certainly be keeping other orange liqueur's around the house as they obviously have their place (have I mentioned that being a drink nerd is expensive?), if you only keep one bottle of that sort of thing around I'd certainly recommend the Shrub.

I suppose I should also mention that I have nothing to do with the Clement folks. The event I attended was open to the public - I didn't even get any free shwag. Except for drinks, which I suppose really is the best shwag one can get.

Both Ed and I, however, are totally up for being bribed if anybody's interested though.

Comments always welcome or feel free to e-mail us at drinkaweek [at] gmail [dot] com.


Anonymous said...

I brought some back from Anguilla but now want to bet it in the States.
Is it available?

drinkaweek said...

Hi Lsr,

I'm not sure how available it is, but it is available in the states, and you should be able to find it for sure if you're in any of the "major" booze markets.