Volcanic terroir and Clément’s tropical appellation lend Première Canne its exotic bouquet and a sensational palate entry with flavors of cocoa bean, bittersweet chocolate, black tea, and unrefined sugar. The mid-palate brings elements of fresh grass and beans preceding a graceful finish with subtle notes of caramelized sugar.
Martinique has long had the reputation of having the best terroir for sugarcane cultivation, long before Homère Clément had the imaginative idea to press sugarcane to produce Rhum Agricole. Domaine de l’Acajou was purchased in 1887 at the peak of the sugar crisis. The introduction of sugar beets and the increasing availability of cheap South American sugar lead to the collapse of the Martiniquean sugar commerce.
As a result, the local economy, which was driven by the principle cash crop of sugar, was in shambles. Many planters were out of work and took to the streets rioting against the bankrupt plantation owners. What once was a rich and lively island was quickly mired in economic despair. At this time, Homère Clément was a very popular member of the Martiniquean community and the mayor of Le Francois. He purchased the prestigious sugar plantation known as Domaine de l’Acajou just 3 kilometers from the center of Le Francois. This 43 acre estate was considered one of the best sugar plantations on the island of Martinique. But as it was stuck in a poor and stagnate sugar economy, it was unfortunately forced into bankruptcy.
Homère Clément made the necessary investments and transformed one of the island's most prestigious sugar plantations into a producer of world-class Rhum Agricole. He had the planters return to the fields to harvest sugarcane once again, but not to refine sugar. His idea was to press his quality estate grown sugarcane to extract first-pressed aromatic and flavorful sugarcane juice to distill pure rhum. Inspired by the enjoyment of great brandies while studying in his early years in Paris, Homère mimicked the distillers of the great Armagnac’s of southwestern France to perfect his method of rhum production known today as Rhum Agricole.
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