A Tour to the Donner-Peltier Distillery

DP sign

On the last day, after Tales, we went on a distillery tour to the Donner-Peltier Distillery in Thibodaux and that was just the right thing to do because it turned out a fabulous day!

Starting at the Palace Cafè with drinks and then into the bus and off we went towards the sugarcane fields in Thibodeaux. On the bus the mood was happy and Rum Punches with Rougaroux rums were served 🙂 I have reviewed the Rougaroux Fullmoon dark, blackstrap rum before on this blog and that rum is one of my favorite rums and it has found it`s way into many of my tiki drinks!

Now to see where this fabulous rum is made as well as the other products they are making like the white overproof rum, the Sugarshine as well as their 13 Pennies rum, LA1 Whiskey and Oryza gin and vodka.

The distillery is a little gem way out in Thibodaux….and we were welcomed with a real nice lunch with spicy tasty cajun food and then cocktails with their products and a brief overview of what they are doing. Then after the lunch and cocktails we walked into the distillery to learn how their products are made.

The name “Rougaroux” (Roo ga roo) comes from a Louisiana tale about the Rougaroux which is a mysterious creature lurking in the sugarcane fields and swamps, emerging only during a full moon to exact justice on the wicked… its curse lasting 101 days….and therefore the Sugarshine rum is 101 proof 🙂

The legend of the Rougaroux is based on that the sugarcane fileds are quite a dangerous place for kids to play in, they can get lost or bitten by snakes or other dangerous creatures and so the legend was made to keep them away from playing there.

But the kids got scared by the Rougaroux so they couldn`t sleep….and so then the legend of the 13 Pennies was born….(which also is the name of their praline rum)

The legend has it that if you place 13 pennies outside your door on the ground you`ll confuse the Rougaroux because he can only count to 12….and when he comes and sees the 13 pennies he starts to count and when he gets to 13 he has to start all over again so he is busy counting all night and when the sun starts to rise he has to leave and go back to his lair….

DP 13 PENNIES

13 pennies outside the door…..

The Rougaroux rums are made from local sugarcane and are distilled in both pot and column stills and there´s 3 rums, the Fullmoon Dark which is a blackstrap rum, made from a white rum that has been aged in white oak barrels and which to me tastes like something in between Cruzan blackstrap and El dorado 12, with the addition of dark sugary and fuel notes, it´s a very special rum! then the white Sugarshine rum which is a overproof “moonshine”rum also with a funky nose.

The 13 Pennies is a nice praline flavored rum, not so strong, more sweet and nutty, but it doesn`t have that much of praline in the flavor though, more just a sort of nuttiness.

The Rougaroux Fullmoon Dark Rum is aged on white oak with no extracts, caramel or artificial ingredients added. This rum is my favorite product of their range and it´s absolutely amazing in tiki drinks! but the Sugarshine rum is not to forget….it´s also a rum full of boldness and punch!

Then they make a whiskey, LA1, the Oryza vodka and a gin, and the Oryza vodka recenly was dubbed the “One of the best vodka in the US” by the “Fifty Best” –  the vodka is one of two in the nation that is distilled from rice.

They also have a littel gift shop on the premises and I bought a bottle of El Guapo Bitters, flavor – “Crawfish Boil”….there´s a “Gumbo” Bitters too, very punchy and a more gentle “Polynesian Kiss”. These bitters are unique to Louisiana.

As a gift we could chose between the Rougaroux Full Moon Dark or the Sugarshine rums and since I already have the dark I picked the white Sugarshine rum, espect a review of it later. This tour was educational and fun and it was an excellent day!

Here´s a picture parade from the tour:

DP drinks

We started out at the Palace Cafè with morning Bloody Mary`s, followed by Rum Punches on the bus heading to Thibodaux.

DP bar, cajun food

To continue with cocktails in the bar in the gift shop and a lunch with many different spicy cajun sausages, boudin and other tasty things.

DP Barrels and stills

Then further into the distillery to see the stills, barrels etc and learn about how their products are made.

DP Barrels

Rum barrels.

DP RAW SUGAR

This raw sugar smelled and tasted heavenly….

DP sugarcane field sugar blackstrap

Sugarcane fields and black strap molasses, used to make the flavorful Rougaroux rums.

DP Distillery collage

If you get a chance, try to visit this distillery!

DP EL GUAPO BITTERS2

El Guapu Crawfish Boil Bitters

DP ROUGAROUX SUGARSHINE

And to take home, I picked this one, the potent Sugarshine rum!

Deep down from Louisiana – Rougaroux Full Moon Dark Rum

Rougaroux bottle

This rum surprises me… it´s that good…and it makes one hell of a “Corn `n`Oil!

Rougaroux Rum is made by Donner-Peltier Distillers located in the middle of the cane fields in Thibodaux, Louisiana using pure black strap molasses and raw sugar grown and milled from a family owned farm just down the road from the distillery. They also produce a gin, a vodka and a whiskey called LA1 Whiskey because it´s Louisiana`s first aged whiskey since prohibition.

The name Rougaroux comes from french and cajun folklore legends:

“Deep in the heart of Southern Louisiana Cajun Country lurks a mysterious creature known as the Rougarou, (Roo ga roo). It lingers in the sugarcane fields and swamps, emerging only during a full moon to exact justice on the wicked”

– Because of their monster flavor, we chose this name for our rums”

And flavorful this rum sure is…

I have only tried this dark one and so i have yet to try the white rum which i have heard is also very good having a thick molasses and brown sugar character)

I had heard about Rougaroux rum but never yet tried it when i one day was sitting at the Carousel bar at the Monteleone in New Orleans with a few friends during the Tales of the Cocktail this past summer. One of them suggested i try a rum Alexander with Rougaroux dark which i did and i found it so good i felt i just had to review this rum, here we had something really interesting!

This is a blackstrap rum – but it´s quite different from the other two blackstrap rums i have. They do of course have similarities, like that typical “yummy” blackstrap/molasses flavor but Rougaroux has also an almost demerara-like flavor profile to it with a bold, mysterious, thick and full bodied flavor – and it is (of course) also perfect for tiki drinks…( a big plus in my book…)

But Rougaroux is not as black-ish in color as the others, instead it has a very dark brown color with beautiful almost”reddish” mahogany hues. The label is also really cool i think and so fitting for this rum.

Using Louisiana raw sugar cane and blackstrap molasses they create a white rum which is further aged in white oak barrels (for how long is not known) There is no caramel or other additives in this rum.

Nose: The nose gets me directly to think about a blackstrap with demerara aromas…Deep wood and sugarcane, mash of ripe tropical fruits, a hint of crispy citrus and fresh sugarcane. It`s big on the nose.

In the Mouth: Here comes some vanilla notes along with the wood, it`s deep and oaky with hints of orange peel, sugarcane and molasses. It`s rather balanced and pleasant to sip on and the flavor stays with you for quite some time.

What i find interesting is that it reminds me of  El Dorado 12 year old…and i`m kinda puzzled by that – but i love it! I really like those dark, thick, flavorful rums that got “punch” (and can stand up in tiki cocktails) Also a white rum can have that same character – which i suspect their white “Sugarshine” rum may have…since it´s said to have thick molasses and brown sugar  flavors – a tasting is required! and i can`t wait to try that one as well.

Rougaroux Full Moon Dark Rum won in 2013, bronze at the San Francisco World Spirits and gold
at the World Spirits Award and in 2014 it won silver at the World Spirits Award and gold at the Beverage Tasting Institute.

If i would pick three words to describe this rum it would be dark, deep and balanced…they call it a whiskey sipper´s rum.

Well, after trying this i can safely say that i prefer to not be without it and that is despite i already have other blackstrap rums, but this one is more than just a blackstrap rum, it´s different. And it does go very well in tiki cocktails.

Dark Puka Punch

Rougaroux Dark Puka Punch

1 oz Rougaroux Full Moon Dark Rum
1 oz aged Rhum Agricole
1 oz fresh lime juice
0.75 oz orange júice
0.75 oz pineapple juice
0.75 z passionfruit syrup (lilikoi)
2 tsp honey-mix (equal parts honey and water, mixed and heated to dissolve the honey, then cooled to room temp)
0.25 oz * falernum

Float a little bit of 151 rum on top and finish with a couple dashes angostura bitters.

Classic tiki drink, tasty and rummy! the Rougaroux plays well here.

* Falernum – you can read about what it is here and how to make your own if you wish (it´s brighter and tastier) here and here.

And on to the next….did i say Rougaroux Full Moon Dark makes a mean Corn ´n`Oil? here it is:

Full Moon Corn ´n´ Oil

Rougaroux Full Moon Corn n Oil 1

2 oz Rougaroux Full Moon Dark Rum
0.5 oz Falernum
And just a little squeeze of fresh lime…

Build in a rocks glass with crushed or cracked ice.
Squeeze a lime wedge over the top, stir, and throw in the spent lime wedge in the glass.

Sip and enjoy!

Three Dots and a Dash

Three Dots and a Dash with Rougaroux rum and Clement VSOP

Here´s one of my favorite tiki drinks, it´s a Don the Beachcomber drink and that`s quite appropriate here in this post since Donn Beach was a Louisiana native just like the Rougaroux rum is. He made this drink to commemorate the Allied victory and the name of the drink comes from the Morse Code for the letter “V.” Hence the garnish of the three cherries and either a pineapple leaf/spear or a long chunk representing the three dots and the dash for the Morse Code.

I have only switched the original recipe`s demerara rum for the Rougaroux.

1.5 oz amber Martinican Rhum
0.5 oz Rougaroux Full Moon Dark Rum
0.5 oz lime juice
0.5 oz orange juice
0.5 oz honey mix*
0.25 oz falernum
0.25 oz pimento Dram
6 oz crushed Ice

Combine all ingredients into a blender and blend at high speed for about 5 seconds. Pour into an appropriate glass and garnish with 3 cherries and a pineapple leaf spear or a long shaped chunk.

*Honey Mix

1 part Honey and 1 part Water, gently heated so the honey dissolves and then cooled to room temp.

Here`s some info on where to buy (only in the US and Louisiana for now)

Rougaroux Dark Rum

 

Rougaroux Dark Puka Punch collage

 

See other Rougaroux Full Moon Dark rum reviews on RumRatings