Whiskey: The Original Recession Buster

Free tastings this weekend offer a little something to numb the pain.

By John Capone
|  Saturday, Mar 7, 2009  |  Updated 3:50 PM EDT
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Whiskey: The Original Recession Buster

Courtesy Tuthilltown Spirits.

It's no mistake they look like medicine bottles.

What is better than using local grains to make flour? Using them to make bourbon, of course.

Tuthilltown Spirits is located in the Tuthilltown Gristmill, in the Hudson Valley, which, for 220 years used water power before water power was considered "alternative" energy to make flour. Now one of the mills has been turned into a distillery turning out vodkas, whiskeys and most notably the Hudson Baby Bourbon made from 100 percent New York corn.

The last time aged grain spirits could be legally distilled in New York was before prohibition. Upstate farms produced the original recession buster before the end of Prohibition when the first Great Depression kicked in. They might not have been a bargain, but they sure made people forget about money for a little while. Tuthhilltown whiskeys are the first aged grain spirits produced legally in New York State since the Wilson Administration, and the its makers take pains to preserve the artisanal creaftmanship of their predecessors.

Get a taste of the distillery's offerings this weekend when Gable Erenze, Tuthhilltown Spirit's head distiller, comes to town to show off his handiwork at two free tastings. He'll be ar Bottlerocket in Chelsea tonight from 6–8 p.m. and at Uva in Williamsburg tomorrow from 3–5 p.m. Not to be missed by fans of whiskey or old-timey bottles.

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