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At Artisan Wine Shop, we're all in on clairin, the traditional rum of Haiti. Patrick St. Surin is another fantastic producer who started distillery in 2012 in Carrefour Des Pères, a small commune about a thirty-minute drive outside of Cap-Haïtien. He farms 10ha of his own sugarcane, with many unique varieties not grown elsewhere. He also harvests an additional few hectares of his neighbors property in exchange for letting their cows and goats graze around his property.
Following the traditional process of the region, the clairin starts with natural fermentation of sugar cane juice, after which a little cane syrup to the fermenters - huge, open-top oak barrels. These massive wooden fermentation vessels are also quite special, as most clairin in Haiti is fermented in plastic or concrete. Patrick sourced his barrels from the lone cooper working on the north of the island. The fermented cane juice is distilled twice in small pot stills and bottled at full proof. The resulting rum has exquisite texture and weight, with precision on the palate and bunch of funk and tropical fruit on the nose.