Monday, March 27, 2017

Black Draft Distillery

Black Draft DistilleryDistilleries are popping up all over the Mountain State, and few are as impressive as Martinsburg's Black Draft Distillery.

Black Draft DistilleryServing up authentic moonshine, Black Draft Distillery is crafted in a converted horse barn behind the owners' home.
To tell a great story, you have to go back to the beginning…
It began with a remarkable horse. 
Before there was a Black Draft Distillery, we were just Black Draft Farm with a Percheron draft horse named Biscuit. For ten years we were known as “that farm with the big beautiful horse”. The one that would ride through the nearby neighborhoods, bringing friends and family out of the homes to meet her and go on rides. And, they’d fall in love with her just like we did. 
And every year starting in the fall, she became the main horse that rode in the Apple Harvest parades, then as Santa’s main ride for the Christmas festivities of our town’s Annual Tree Lighting ceremony. 
Last fall, we suddenly lost her, and the barn was left empty with her spirit still very much a strong part of the farm. 
And that is when we decided to take a new chapter in our lives in a very different direction. We sat down as a family, and decided to start a new business and bring the farm back to life again. We wanted to bring back the plow-to-earth business that would make our ancestors proud, and that could be handed down to the next generation. And that is when we decided to get into the whiskey business. 
When it came time to choose a name for the new venture, there was only one that would honor the spirit of our beloved Biscuit. These stories. That horse. These generations. And, that moonshine. This is what brings family and friends together. And that’s what makes moonshine great!
Black Draft DistilleryI was fortunate that Glen and Tara were kind enough to allow me to visit during off-season hours. I don't get to Martinsburg often, so when I knew I'd be passing through, I got in touch with them immediately. They were more than happy to sit down with me and talk to me a little bit about what they do.

Black Draft Distillery
There's something really special about talking to people about what they're passionate about. That's a main driving force in why I wanted to pursue journalism. So hearing the owners talk to me about how they got into this and what it's like serving their community is pretty incredible.

Black Draft DistilleryThey're welcoming and inviting, and - most importantly - totally willing to have a drink with me!

Black Draft DistilleryThey sell four different drinks: First Harvest Moonshine, Rise & Shine Coffee Moonshine, White Julep Moonshine and a bourbon that flies of the shelf faster than they can make it.
First Harvest Moonshine: Made with locally grown NON-GMO corn! Click here to read more about our local corn harvest season.
If you fancy yourself a connoisseur of all-things-whiskey, think again. 
For the first time since Prohibition, you’ll soon be able to (legally) settle into a glass of true-blue, or should I say clear, West Virginia Moonshine, courtesy of Black Draft Distillery.
Old school mason jar?
Check.
Smooth finish so you can even taste the corn?
Check. 
Listen. This ain’t your college bathtub juice. Nor is it some souvenir swill from a corner in a general store. Our First Harvest Moonshine is an honest-to-goodness West Virginia unaged corn whiskey made in the heart of bootlegging country. We’re in the Shenandoah Valley, right in the foothills of the Appalachian mountains. And by incorporating local products, we are working to create a truly authentic, pure, and tasty, libation. 
Most moonshine is made primarily with sugar, and is typically referred to as “white lightning” mainly due to its hot, harsh taste. But we use corn, barley, and wheat to create a smoother, rich flavor and taste. 
And, while some of you out there might have already tangled with the illegal variety, Black Draft Distillery promises a product that won’t land you and your buddies in the clinker. 
Available in 375ml- “pint” or 750ml “fifth” size. Visit our purchase page to locate where to Get Your Shine On!
Black Draft DistilleryThe regular moonshine is much cleaner and smoother than I expected a moonshine to be. The coffee moonshine - made with local roasters Black Dog Coffee - is a must for any West Virginia coffee-lover. And, the White Julep moonshine is not typically something I would typically go for, but mixed with some fresh mint, maybe some cranberry, some bitters... this could be one helluva drink. I even got to try some of the unfiltered bourbon. Top notch. 

Black Draft DistilleryIf you're in the area, give Glen & Tara a call. They'd be more than happy to chat with you. And, you certainly won't regret it. 

Black Draft DistilleryI can't wait to see how they grow and expand from here. 

Black Draft Distillery