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Velier Presents Saint James AOC Anniversary Collection

(Image Source: Velier)


Velier has announced the launch of a vertical collection of ten Saint James millésimes in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Martiniquan AOC designation.

The special project was conceived by Luca Gargano, who had his start in the rum-verse as a product manager for Saint James in 1975, and at the time had gotten to know Jean-Claude Benoit, who would eventually become the head of the Saint James Distillery.

Jean-Claude Benoit himself had helped push for the creation of the Martinique AOC designation in 1996, the only AOC outside Europe. The AOC governs the key production specifications that ensures the quality and authenticity of agricultural rums produced from Martinique, only upon meeting such specifications can a rum carry the "Martinique AOC" mark and logo on its label.


(Image Source: Velier)


The vertical represents the first ever Saint James co-bottling since its establishment, which will see the Martinique rum be filled into the classic bold-shouldered black Velier bottles rather than its house-style square bottles, and will also commemorate Jean-Claude Benoit's retirement from the distillery.

The ten bottles selected by Jean-Claude Benoit and Marc Sassier will showcase the ten most representative vintages from the 25 year history of the Martiniquan AOC, and will carry a label designed by Luca Gargano that pays homage to the original editions.


(Image Source: Velier)


While the series was due to be released in 2021 to commemorate both the 25th anniversary of the Martiniquan AOC and the retirement of distillery head Jean-Claude Benoit, the result of global shipping delays meant that the series could only now be released in 2022.

According to Velier, the commemorative set, the first in the distillery's 257 year history, is a "never-to-be-repeated co-bottling".


(Image Source: Velier)


Find out more details about each bottling and the respective vintages here at Velier.it.