Travelling through the sugar-producing past of the archipelago of Madeira is, in a way, navigating through the history of this people. The Engenho da Calheta is an iconic testimony to this legacy. It is, therefore, an enriching visit to be included in any itinerary along the west coast of the island.
The 'Sociedade dos Engenhos da Calheta' was created in a context of great industrial development. That period, corresponding to the late 19th century and the early 20th century, can be characterised as the second Madeiran sugar cycle (a product once called 'white gold').
With more than half a century of existence, Engenho da Calheta is one of the oldest sugar cane mills on the island. This facility produces the internationally renowned Madeira rum, obtained under controlled fermentation and a careful distillation process, and the unmistakable sugar cane honey, made by steaming the 'garapa'.
The Engenho da Calheta, situated in the heart of the town, is a true living museum. The mill works once a year, usually after Easter celebrations. It is a unique opportunity to travel back in time. However, the facilities, which include a tasting room and a wine bar, can be visited all year round.
The Engenho da Calheta, over half a century old, is one of Madeira's oldest sugar cane mills. It produces two iconic regional products: rum and sugar cane honey.