|Photo by Riikka Pitkanan|
|The two owner/operators, in the sugar cane field|
We hop on the back of a tractor to ride into the fields, then opt to just walk and enjoy the butter flies. I'm the only fool in wedge heels, but I manage not to trip along the rocky path. We toured the sugar cane fields, which were originally intended for ethanol development but luckily were converted for better purposes.
The distillery uses the patterns of traditional silk weavers from Laos for the labels. Their interior art work reflects the local townspeople working in the field for harvesting. They don't use chemical fertilizer or pesticides, because of the water and the workers. They don't use machines to harvest or plant, but instead hire locals, raising local earnings. Oh, and they make a damn good cocktail.
After enjoying the great outdoors, we drive back to the city, and head straight to the distillery's riverside bar, Laodi. Equally as enjoyable, however, as the stars start to twinkle, we realize we actually have kids. Two of them, home with the grandparents, and probably hungry. We come home to find two exhausted grandparents, one sleeping terror, and one overjoyed toddler. Apparently, they'd been inconsolable since 4pm, but the grandparents were too kind to end our drinking binge.
I won't make this a long post. Suffice it to say, Laodi rum is my new favorite drink. I left with three bottles and a mini pack to send to my dad. They're exporting to France. If you're lucky, they'll be exporting to the USA soon.
http://rhumlaodi.com/laodi.html check out their website!