La Mauny X.O.

La Mauny XO-RG2

Product of:  Martinique, FWI
Aged: blend of rhums aged over 6 years
Price:
 €326 (purchased at La Mauny distillery on Martinique)
Alcohol: 40% ABV 
Sugar: 0 g/L 
Context: Rhum Agricole Vieux
RG Rating: 9

Tasting Notes
La Mauny X.O. presents a winning display in a proper tasting glass, showing the color of beautifully polished golden bronze, with a green halo around the edge where rhum meets glass.  A multitude of legs with great structure appear, drip, and are followed by even more legs.

A bouquet of dried plum, overripe mango and papaya eagerly greet your senses to a fragrant, flavorful rhum as soon as the cork is released.  The aromas are a complex mix of spice in perfect proportions.  The fruit is present, joined by fresh dried tobacco, understated oaken vanilla, gingerbread (and the baking spices it entails - nutmeg, cinnamon, hint of clove) and cedar.  In the mouth, those aromas beget supple unctuous flavors, nearly manifesting gingerbread, tropical fruit and the herbaceous sugarcane grassiness so traditionally de rigueur of rhums agricole, while introducing a delicious caramel sweetness balanced by licorice  and a hint of white pepper.  The body has a creamy texture, filling the mouth softly, and presenting an encore of all the aromatic flavors through to a finish that’s more lingering memory than permeating taste.  Bravo!

Anecdotes 
La Mauny’s 1998’s bedecks this fine X.O. rhum with nice packaging too.  A stately red and gold cylinder provides a commanding and informative container.  A tapered, clear cylindrical bottle displays the rhum’s rich color, hinting at the rhum’s substantial flavor characteristics .  Topping the bottle is a natural cork stopper with a stout wooden cap, sealed under heavy foil.  The bottle is minimally adorned with labels, but is embossed with the words: “Depuis 1749”;
“La Mauny” [underscored]; and “Martinique”.

The La Mauny estate was established in 1749 by Count Joseph Ferdinand de Mauny, native of Normandy, France.  The island of Martinique is often referred to as the “Pearl of the West Indies”, and one visit will convince you.  Distillerie La Mauny is located at Riviére Pilote, in the South part of the island.  The plantation is renowned for the beauty of its terroir and a climate that offers ideal conditions for aging rums.  You can see a photo tour of the La Mauny distillery here.

Opinion
I’m simply amazed at the delicate yet powerful aromatic and flavor characteristics demonstrated by La Mauny - all the more impressive considering the relatively low ABV of 40%. 

It may also be a good cross-over rhum that could enlighten aficionados of the far more popular style of rums made from molasses (and perhaps even Scotch or Bourbon drinkers) to try an aged agricole.  Go ahead.

Reviewed:  December 2014 at La Mauny’s tasting room and boutique on Martinique, and again in September 2015 at the Rum Gallery, USA.


© Dave Russell 2017