Distillerie Arawaks - Clairin Vaval
Style: Single Village Clairin (Rhum Agricole)
Clairin Vaval is driven by salty minerality derived from the proximity to the Haitian south coast. Its vegetal, umami nature is bolstered by toasted dry spice notes. Sip it alone or play off classic gin pairings like grapefruit, coriander and cucumber.
Cavaillon is three hours driving from Portau-Prince on the way to Les Cayes in the south region and close to splendid beaches of Aquin. After the bridge of the village and the animated small market, a dirt road arrives to the distillery Arawaks of Fritz Vaval.
The distillery was built after the second war by Fritz’s father, Danois Vaval. Today Fritz has 20 hectares of the sugarcane variety called Madame Meuze, grown naturally without the additions fertilizers or artificial pesticides. The cane is cut by machete and transported by donkeys to be pressed in a small mill. Fermentation lasts around 5 days and is carried out using wild yeasts without adding water or artificial substances.
The distillate is made on a unique pot still that is very different from any other because it’s homemade. The steam comes from an ancient boiler, powered by burning bagasse. Two distillations are done per day, each lasting around 10 hours and come off the still at 50 to 55% ABV.
The Arawaks distillery was given its name by Fritz’s father in honor of the Arawaks people: the original Caribbean people that populated the south of the island before the colonists arrived.