This book shares the stories of 30 New York craft spirit distillers, their journey to success, and their emphasis on using locally grown products. It is an intimate look into each of their struggles, triumphs, and the decision to embark upon this journey.
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The book is a pretty short read but incredibly interesting. Craft brewing/distilling is on the rise in New York State and there seems to be a growing number of both craft breweries and distilleries. Personally, I was more aware of the breweries that we have in the area so I found this book pretty fascinating to learn about all of the distilleries that we have. There are currently 55 craft distillers as well as 20 more in different stages of the licensing process. If you haven’t been to visit any of these places, you are defiantly missing out. I have been saying for years that a book like this should exist.
The first few chapters start off with explaining how the craft spirits boom began and a little background information about the author. Heather also goes into detail about what is required to start a craft distillery. From the licensing costs, to how much one can produce to still be considered a craft distillery (must produce less than 100,000 gallons). She then gets into the 30 New York craft distillers that are featured in her book, featuring their success stories and some background information about their indie-businesses.
At the end of each chapter, Heather gives recipes of cocktails you can make from the liquor each business produces. Hidden Marsh Distillery at Montezuma Winery is the closest one to here. There is a recipe (just one of many recipes provided) for a drink called “Skeeter Juice,” which is their Wreckin’ Ball Corn Whiskey mixed with lemonade. I have sampled their Judd’s Wreckin’ Ball Corn Whiskey before, it is pretty good. This is also what I found in this book to be most exciting. If you have never toured a brewery or distillery, or gone for a tasting, you should make the time. Heather makes this a lot easier by giving the addresses and where to find each of these distilleries, as well as an idea of what to expect there. She also provides the locations where each of the distilleries products can be purchased.