24 Days of Rum 2023/20: Rivière Du Mât Vieux

Rivière Du Mât is one of the oldest distilleries on Reunion Island still in operation. It is talking about long years of tradition, it was founded in 1886. Production is environmental friendly, from 2011 distillery helps with Island sustainable energy production. Sugar cane is grown on volcanic soil and rums are aged in oak cask in Saint-Louis cellars.

Their basic rums are bar rums, white Master Legend, aged Gold Barrel and dark Black Spiced. After that there is tasting line with vanilla or ginger Arrangé flavoured rums and Vieux rum. Highest line is called Prestige and consists of Grande Reserve, VSOP and XO rums.

Todays rum is called Vieux or Royal Reserve or Old Small Batch. It is blend of differend rums from different casks. They are column still distilled, probably from fresh sugarcane juice. It has 42 % ABV and it is recommended to drink neat or in old fashioned cocktail.

Nose is very rubbery agricole. There are gummy candies and sweet rubber, then pepper and mint chewing gum. I sense some technical notes and hints of fruits and spices.

Taste is almost without any sweet notes, it is fresh and strong. Quite light with hint of juiciness. There is strong mint chewing gum and sweet rubber, also lots of pepper and gummy candies. And lots of rubber.

Aftertaste has sweet rubber and gummy candies with chewing gum. It is lightly sweet and quite long. Its fresh with lots of rubber, there is some fruit in background.

For me this is typical french style agricole rhum – rubber, gummy candies, black pepper. It is not suprising, but also not bad. It is strong and full rum of simple yet full style. For some complexity one would need to look into something more aged. This vieux could be good for simple drinking and flavorfull cocktails.