story: JEANNE RUNKLE
Brooklyn is no stranger to distilling. Records indicate that one of first distilleries was founded in 1810, with many more to follow. As the gallons of whiskey began to flow in Brooklyn, it seems that more and more distilleries “forgot” to pay their taxes. “Forgot” to the tune of about $1.2M. And that’s in late 1860s dollars, too. As you can guess, the government soon showed up in force, seizing distilleries and the illegal barrels of hooch they made. Things turned ugly in 1869, when 1500 troops were sent into what’s now the Vinegar Hill neighborhood to shut down and destroy the illicit stills. Nothing like a little “Whiskey War” to keep things interesting, right? Combined with industrial accidents that were a common occurrence, Brooklyn was definitely an adventure in distilling in the late 1800s.
Fast forward 150 years or so. Brooklyn is once again home to quite a crew of distillers. Even though I’m not in Brooklyn, I’ve had the pleasure of trying many things on this list, as well as meeting the folks behind the still. But having these places within walking distance – I’m pretty sure I’m jealous. But I’ll feel better if you go check out these out – take a tour, have a taste, buy a bottle. You won’t regret it!
Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur – Brooklyn – Barrow’s didn’t put Intense in the name to be cute, they really mean it. Made from a ton of fresh ginger, Barrow’s really is that good. Pair it up with your favorite whiskey, cook with it – anywhere you want the fresh taste of ginger, grab some Barrow’s.